The UN Commission for Social Development (CSocD) adopted during its session in February 2011 a new Youth Resolution called “Policies and Programmes involving Youth”, focusing on the importance of cooperation among UN agencies working on youth issues and on developing a joint set of indicators assessing the progress of global Youth Policies. PaxRomana and the European Youth Forum (YFJ) were present during the CSocD in order to support and facilitate the Youth Delegate’s activities. Together they were working towards a better framework for youth policy at the global level. Beside this it was important to maintain their contacts with relevant partners.

'under construction' - the parts of the UN need to improve its recognition of Youth Participation

'under construction' - the parts of the UN need to improve its recognition of Youth Participation

 

The main focus of the Youth Delegates and the ICMYO partners that were present during the 49th session of the CSocD was contributing to, and by this improving, the UN Youth Resolution. While the actual focus of the resolution was supposed to be technical aspects, we were able to add substantial proposals on youth employment, and the need to make it an integral aspect of national development agendas. The call for indicators in order to measure the progress towards the World Programme of Action for Youth is valuable but stays uncompleted without working on sharpening and improving the goals and targets that were developed together with Youth Organizations and Young People four years ago.

The Youth resolution valued the importance of coordination and collaboration among United Nations entities, but it came short in proposing concrete steps in order to strengthen partnerships between Youth Organizations/Youth Platforms and the Inter-Agency Network on Youth Development. This was one of the demands put forward in the YFJ’s policy paper on Global Governance, and the Forum will continue to strive towards a real participation in the network. In sum it can be said that the Youth Resolution gathers many valuable issues but lacks a clear focus and connection to the CSocD’s theme ‘poverty eradication’ and is therefore not a big step forward.

Youth Delegates during the Side Event on Youth Participation

Youth Delegates during the Side Event on Youth Participation

With its resolution 64/134, the United Nations General Assembly not only proclaimed the year following the International Youth Day 2010 as the International Year of Youth but it also decided to hold a Youth Conference in 2011, under the auspices of the UN, as the highlight of the year. Both the Youth Resolution and the negotiations for this Conference took a lot of attention and work. The main aim of PaxRomana and the YFJ and its partners is to ensure full and effective youth participation and the involvement of Youth Organizations during all phases of the conference. The negotiations are still ongoing and the outcome is not clear. Together with Youth Delegates and some Member States we were able to ensure a strong EU position concerning real youth participation. Prior to the CSocD several ICMYO members, Youth Delegates and National Youth Council sent a letter to the President of the UN General Assembly, outlining our priorities.

Together with our partners and the Youth Delegates we will follow-up future developments and will closely monitor the progress.

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