However, we in World Animal Net (WAN) have decided not to accept this situation lying down, but to advocate with our animal protection colleagues and other allies until our collective voices are heard. We are calling on animal protection organizations across the world to help us in this task. We are not powerful enough on our own to make the difference – but “Together We Can”!
Political Opportunity Arises!
Now that the SDGs have been developed, each year there will be a High-Level Political Forum (HLPF), which is the UN’s central platform for follow-up and review of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the SDGs. This not only provides for the participation of UN member states and specialized agencies, but also provides further opportunities for civil society input. Each year the HLPF will take a set of SDGs to review. This provides an opportunity and focus for ongoing APO advocacy.
NGO Official Position Paper: Supportive Extracts
Just a few of supportive sections which APOs can use in their advocacy work are highlighted below:
The 2017 meeting of the HLPF on sustainable development will be held in New York from Monday 10th July, to Wednesday 19th July. The theme will be "Eradicating poverty and promoting prosperity in a changing world". The set of goals to be reviewed in depth will be the following:
- Goal 1. End poverty in all its forms everywhere.
- Goal 2. End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture.
- Goal 3. Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages.
- Goal 5. Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls.
- Goal 9. Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation.
- Goal 14. Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development.
- Plus Goal 17 Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development. Goal 17 will be considered each year.
The meeting will also include voluntary national reviews.
NGO Major Group
WAN is a member of the NGO Major Group (NGO MG), one of the nine groups recognized by the UN as the main channels through which broad participation is facilitated in UN activities related to sustainable development. See here for more about Major Groups. The NGO MG is tasked with collating and reconciling the diverse perspectives of NGOs into a word-limited position paper—a challenging endeavor! WAN took part in their latest consultation exercise on the 2017 HLPF, and was impressed by the open and participatory way in which the NGO MG operates. The result of this consultation can be found in their official position paper for the HLPF. As you will see, we were able to insert quite a number of animal protection concerns into the final paper.
The NGO MG is asking all NGOs to share and use this paper - on social media, with government representatives you meet, and on your organization’s website.
See below for more about the national advocacy needed!
WAN is currently working with colleagues from the following organizations in pitching for a Side Event at the HLPF:
- Brighter Green
- A Well Fed World
- Compassion in World Farming
- The Good Food Institute
- Humane Society International
The theme of the proposed side event is “The Future of Food and Agriculture in a Changing World” and would highlight the inherent unsustainability of industrial animal agriculture and promote alternatives that can provide kinder, healthier and more equitable solutions to world hunger and food security while eradicating poverty and promoting prosperity.
Please keep your fingers crossed that our Side Event pitch will succeed!
Regional Preparatory Meetings
We are also represented at the following Regional Preparatory meetings:
- The Africa Regional Forum on Sustainable Development (Addis Ababa 17-19 May) – where we will be represented by WAN Co-Founder, Janice Cox.
- The Arab Forum for Sustainable Development (Rabat 3-5 May) – where we were represented by our partner organization RAPAD, Morocco (the Associative Network for Animal Welfare and Sustainable Development).
We promise that we will do all in our power to make the case for animals in these important meetings!
National Advocacy Needed Now!
Whilst we are doing what we can to make the case for animals through these various channels, we are very aware that final decisions will not rest with civil society, but with UN member countries. So we are calling on all APOs to lobby their national governments to make the case for animals and the environment. The supportive parts of the NGO MG official position paper will be useful background for this advocacy work. However, a copy of our more targeted briefing is also available on request (general briefing, briefing on the SDGs under review and comments on the SDG indicators). Please do not hesitate to ask for this (or, indeed, for any other information and advice on your advocacy).
Thank you for helping us to help the animals!