Almost one year after the adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, Member States, Civil Society, the Private Sector and UN Agencies come together in New York for the High Level Political Forum. This year's theme is "Ensuring that no one is left behind".
The High-level Political Forum (HLPF) on Sustainable Development is the central platform for the global follow-up and review of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs ) adopted at the UN Sustainable Development Summit on 25th September 2015.
Almost one year after the adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, Member States, Civil Society, the Private Sector and UN Agencies come together in New York to report about and exchange on progress made in implementing that ambitious agenda. The HLPF will take place from 11-20 July at the UN in New York with an overarching theme of “Ensuring that no one is left behind,” very relevant for the rights of persons with disabilities. Importantly, the HLPF will have national voluntary reviews of 22 countries and thematic reviews of progress on the SDGs, including cross-cutting issues, supported by reviews by the ECOSOC functional commissions and other inter-governmental bodies and forums. The 22 countries that have volunteered to give national reports on SDG implementation at the HLPF in July include: China, Colombia, Egypt, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Madagascar, Mexico, Montenegro, Morocco, Norway, Philippines, Republic of Korea, Samoa, Sierra Leone, Switzerland, Togo, Turkey, Uganda, and Venezuela.
As this is the first time that the HLPF looks at the implementation of the 2030 Agenda, it will be critical to learn how it works overall and how persons with disabilities are part of the Forum. This is true for the participation by persons with disabilities in the deliberations of the Forum, but also in terms of Member States reporting about their concrete actions to realise the rights of persons with disabilities in their countries.
The HLPF, which adopts a Ministerial Declaration, is expected to start effectively delivering on its mandates to provide political leadership, guidance and recommendations on the 2030 Agenda's implementation and follow-up, keep track of progress, spur coherent policies informed by evidence, science and country experiences, as well as address new and emerging issues. After this year, the HLPF will continue to be convened for the next 14 years until 2030. For this reason, it is imperative that persons with disabilities are included in this process to ensure full inclusion of the implementation of the SDGs at all levels.
In New York in partnership with the International Disability Alliance (IDA), we have been reaching out to Organizations of Persons with Disabilities (DPOs) and partners in the aforementioned 22 countries to ensure that persons with disabilities are included in the reporting process, to disseminate and gather information, to find good practices and gaps, and assess the situation for the coming years. Sixteen countries responded to a participation-related questionnaire designed by the IDA, the International Disability and Development Consortium (IDDC) and Disability Rights Fund (DRF). Some findings are that multi-stakeholder dialogues between civil society - including persons with disabilities - and governments were carried out in 12 countries; governments did not hold multi-stakeholder dialogues in three countries; and the disability movement was unified in only four countries.
In addition, a parallel event, the Partnership Exchange , will take place on 18 July. This will provide a space for dialogue among multi-stakeholder partnerships and government officials, policy makers, UN entities and major groups and other stakeholders, for showcasing the work of multi-stakeholder partnerships in supporting the achievement of the SDGs, ensuring that no one is left behind in the implementation of the 2030 Agenda. This is a key space as we will highlight the fruitful partnership of IDDC and IDA and our strong collaboration during the process toward the adoption of the 2030 Agenda, as well as planned projects for the implementation phase.