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World Summit for Social Development
PrepCom for Copenhagen +5
New York, 3-14 April 2000

Highlights from Thursday, 13 April
In the morning, afternoon and evening, Working Group I discussed Commitment 9, on resource allocation, and Commitment 7, on accelerated development in Africa and the LDCs. In the afternoon and evening, Working Group II debated Commitment 2, on poverty eradication, and Commitment 4, on social integration.

Above: The US and Pakistan discuss Commitment 7(accelerated development in Africa and LDCs), 87(b), on improving market access for export products.The US, Norway and the EU (ad referendum) supported an amended G-77/China text referring to eliminating trade barriers and other protectionist measures, including, inter alia, securing tariff-free treatment, eliminating quotas and providing preferential schemes for essentially all of their products. Pending Japan's position, the amended paragraph remains bracketed.

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Working Group I discussed Commitment 9, on resource allocation, and Commitment 7, on accelerated development in Africa and the LDCs.

Chair Maquieira consults with the G-77/China

In 87 (a), on implementing debt relief consistent with the HIPC initiative, the G-77/China supported a Norwegian proposal amended by the EU on "innovative" debt relief initiatives for LDCs and proposed reference to debt cancellation. Japan and the US objected. The text remains bracketed. The G-77/China proposed a World Solidarity Fund to alleviate poverty.

Working Group II discussed Commitment 2, eradicating poverty through decisive national actions and international cooperationon resource allocation, and Commitment 4, on promoting social integration

The EU consults with Sudan and Algeria

On 27 bis (i) on the informal sector, the EU deferred discussion on safeguarding and promoting respect for basic workers' rights. The G-77/China opposed, and delegates left bracketed, Canadian text on promoting the balance of employment and family responsibilities.

Egypt and Nigeria

Considering a Chair's reformulation of EU-proposed 27 bis, the G-77/CHINA could not accept reference to "meso-level" in addressing capacity and institution building. The paragraph remains bracketed. . In paragraph 27, on national strategies for a multi-sectoral approach to poverty eradication, the G-77/CHINA accepted EU proposals to, inter alia: delete reference to all relevant government ministries and departments. The paragraph was agreed.

Algeria reading the daily ENB.

The Canadian delegate (right) intervenes on 27 bis (i) on the informal sector.

Norway in Working Group II

Nigeria (left) speaks with NGOs

Julian Disney, President, International Council on Social Welfare, and Chair Maquieira

Further Initiatives in Overcoming Poverty in Partnership with the Poorest
This side event was sponsored by the Division for Social Policy and Development

Quyen Tran, International Movement ATD Fourth World

He described some of the conditions conducive to full partnership with the poorest, including development projects based on aspirations of the poor, opportunities for the poor to renew their creativity, and participation in social and political action. He also outlined conditions necessary for sustainable partnerships with the poor, including time and mutual trust, strengthening the family unit, reciprocity, and participation in project evaluation. He then highlighted two further initiatives: leadership in the commitment to fight poverty; and the establishment of a working group to study the feasibility of a Convention on Overcoming Human Poverty.

Tirro Holele, Department of Welfare and Population Development, South Africa

He described the Speak Out on Poverty Hearings in South Africa, where the poor spoke out on what poverty means to them. Problems raised were referred to the appropriate organizations. Over 10,000 people participated in the entire process in various capacities. Testimonies provided ample evidence of the ingenuity and creativity of people. Gender, disability and crime each emerged as affecting vulnerability of people ot poverty.

Ambassador Ruth Jacoby, Sweden

Ambassador Jacoby discussed how donor countries can contribute to the eradication of poverty. She highlighted outcomes from a Swedish report "The Rights of the Poor." She stressed that poverty is not only lack of material resources, but it is also exclusion from fundamental human rights. She emphasized support for programmes designed by the partner countries themselves. She said the proposal to work for a legally binding convention to overcome human poverty merited further study.

Mental Health: Forging Linkages to Social Development
Moderator Corann Okorodudu, Ed.D., American Psychological Association and Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues, Pablo Sadler, M.D., World Association for Psychosocial Rehabilitation who spoke on A human rights perspective on mental health and social development, Ricki Kantrowitz, Ph.D., World Federation for Mental Health, discussed Gender, mental health and social development, Chris Stout, Ph.D., Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues, addressed Developing sustainable partnerships to promote mental health and social development, and Nancy Wallace, NGO Committee on Mental Health. Not pictured: Richard Donahue, World Federation for Mental Health, discussed Psychosocial well-being and social development, and Joseph DeMeyer, Ph.D., Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues, addressed Implications of the mental health of refugees and displaced persons for social development

.Nancy Wallace, Chair, NGO Committee on Mental Health, Conference of NGOs in consultative status with ECOSOC, discussed the importance of and ways to increase dialogue on and attention given to the issue of mental health at the intergovernmental level within the UN system and at the country level

Life after Debt: The South Speaks
This event, sponsored by the NGO Subcommittee on the Eradication of Poverty and the Caucus on Eradication of Poverty for the Geneva 2000 Special Session, provided a dialogue on debt cancellation from the Southern perspective.
Raj Bardoville, Senior Economist, Office of the Special Coordinator for Africa and the Least Developed States (OSCAL), gave a a technical presentation on financial structures relating to debt financing and payments along with a brief clear analysis of the the reality of the dire effects of unpayable debts on the poor and the urgent need to cancel the debts and increase ODA.

Linkages Coverage of the World Summit for Social Development in Copenhagen
A summary of the major issues
Agenda for the Second Session of the PrepCom

Secretariat web site with official documents and information for NGO participants
Secretary-general's Report on the Implementation of the Outcome of the WSSD
Summary of the WSSD agreements
Information on the WSSD+5 Special Session
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