Today marks the beginning of the High Level Political Forum (HLPF) at the United Nations (UN) Headquarters in New York City. The HLPF is the UN's annual review process for their 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which were put in place in 2015. Each year's HLPF reviews a subset of the SDGs. The SDGs under review this year are:
- SDG 1: End Poverty in all its forms everywhere
- SDG 2: End hunger, improve food security and improved nutrition, and promote sustainable agriculture
- SDG 3: Ensure healthy lives and promote wellbeing for all at all ages
- SDG 5: Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls
- SDG 9: Build resilient infrastructure, promote
- SDG 14: Conserve and sustainably conserve the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development
- inclusive and sustainable industrialization, and foster innovation
- SDG 17 (this SDG is covered every year): Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development.
The HLPF will foster a dialogue on each of these goals. In addition, leading up to each year's HLPF are Voluntary National Reviews (VNRs). VNRs are an opportunity for governments to assess their own progress in achieving the SDGs, and are a good opportunity for animal protection organizations to influence the outcomes. Another process that animal protection organizations can feed into regionally ahead of the HLPF are Regional Preparatory Meetings. This year, World Animal Net attended the regional meeting for Africa in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, and our partner organization RAPAD Morocco attended the Middle Eastern preparatory meeting in Rabat, Morocco.
Lastly, input at the HLPF from civil society is largely accomplished via the Major Groups and Other Stakeholders (MGoS). Joining the NGO Major Group will keep you updated on activities at the UN, and especially on ways to get involved during major events such as the HLPF. You can join the NGO Major Group by filling out their survey and joining their Google Group.
WAN has held consultative status at the United Nations Economic and Social Council since 2001, and in 2015 we moved up to special consultative status. I’m excited to announce that this is our first HLPF that we will attend, and look forward to sharing our insights with you, from how your organization can become active for animals at the United Nations itself, to how you can influence outcomes at the United Nations from a national and regional level.
I will be sharing updates from the HLPF on our Facebook page and on Twitter, and will have a weekly recap blog posted right here, so be sure to follow us on social media and subscribe to receive our blog posts in your inbox (on the right sidebar)! For now, you can read more about the HLPF in this previous post on our blog, and on the official Sustainable Development Goal website.