Updates

Since the World Conference on Indigenous Peoples, various United Nations bodies have decided to take action to implement key decisions of the Conference:

  1. Actions to combat violence against indigenous women. The Human Rights Council, the largest intergovernmental human rights body in the UN, held two panels in 2016 on the issue of violence against indigenous women and girls. In June, the Council held a panel dedicated to addressing violence against indigenous women and girls and its root causes during its annual full-day discussion on the human rights of women. On July 1, the Council adopted its annual resolution to accelerate efforts to eliminate violence against women and girls with a focus on indigenous women and girls. And on September 20, the Council held a panel on violence against indigenous women and girls. The Commission on the Status of Women, the global policymaking body to promote gender quality and empowerment of women, has decided to consider the issue of violence against indigenous women as a focus area during its annual meeting in March, 2017.
  1. An implementing and monitoring body for the UN Declaration. The Human Rights Council convened a two-day expert workshop April 4-5, 2016, to review the mandate of the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and to propose recommendations for how the body can “more effectively promote respect for the UN Declaration, including by better assisting member states to monitor, evaluate, and improve achievement of the ends of the Declaration,” in keeping with the call of the World Conference Outcome Document. The results of the meeting will inform the development of a resolution deciding on the mandate and structure of the implementing and monitoring body to be adopted during the Human Rights Council’s September session. The report from the workshop is available here. The Center, with several supporting indigenous nations and organizations, submitted written comments to inform the report, along with the Citizen Potawatomi Nation’s written comments. The resolution of the Council on this matter is being finalized now.
  1. Participation of indigenous governments in the UN. On March 7, 2016, the President of the General Assembly's 70th session launched a series of consultations with indigenous peoples and member states to determine how to enable the participation of indigenous peoples' representatives and institutions (governments) at the UN, beginning with an initial electronic consultation. The Center, with several supporting indigenous nations and organizations, submitted written comments to inform the electronic consultation, and supplemental submissions to inform the in-person consultations. Based on the input from participants, the advisers to the President published a final compilation of views and addendum. On October 3, the incoming President of the General Assembly's 71st session will convene a launch briefing with indigenous peoples and the member states to discuss next steps and how to proceed. The final compilation of views and addendum will form the basis for a draft text to be finalized and adopted by the General Assembly during its 71st session (September 2016-September 2017). More information regarding the consultation process is available here.


ILRC Supplemental Submission_5-13-16
ILRC Statement I on objective of the process 5-18-16
ILRC Statement II on purpose of consultations and terminology 5-18-16
ILRC Comments on Third Compilation 6-28-16
Indian Law Comments_6-30-16
ILRC Supplemental Submission_7-1-16

2016 is going to be a year of substantive action to implement decisions of the World Conference. Indigenous nations are eager to take their place in the world community, and we will work with you to achieve the strongest outcome possible, to ensure indigenous nations are always at the United Nations to directly assert and to defend your rights and to establish a body capable of responding to situations concerning indigenous peoples' rights. The remaining work to follow through on decisions of the World Conference can positively and permanently impact every tribal nation.

Proposals to Follow-up Decisions of the World Conference on Indigenous Peoples

Download the full details of our proposals to implement decisions of the World Conference:
Actions to combat violence against indigenous women.pdf
An Implementing and monitoring body for the UN Declaration.pdf
Participation of indigenous governments in the UN.pdf

If you are interested in supporting or participating in the World Conference work by supporting the proposals or joining our email list, contact project lead Karla General at kgeneral@indianlaw.org.

Actions to Follow-up Decisions of the World Conference on Indigenous Peoples

Oct. 3, 2016 | The President of the 71st session of the General Assembly, H.E. Mr. Peter Thomson, in response to Resolution A/RES/69/2, conducted an informal launch briefing on the next steps to enable the participation of indigenous peoples' representatives and institutions (governments) at the United Nations. The PGA reconfirmed the appointment of H.E. Mr. Kai Sauer, Permanent Representative of Finland; H.E. Ms. Martha Ama Akyaa Pobee, Permanent Representative of Ghana; Dr. James Anaya; and Dr. Claire Winfield Ngamihi Charters as advisors to the process. The Advisors laid out the schedule of consultative meetings as follows:

  • December 14 and 15, 2016
  • January 30– February 1, 2017
  • February 27-28, 2017
  • April 24– May 5. 2017 (specific dates to be confirmed, depending on the schedule of the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues)

 

July 11, 2016 | Center Asks UN Body to Uphold World Conference Decisions

June 13-July 1, 2016 | Center calls on UN Human Rights Council to take action to end violence against indigenous women

March 14-24, 2016 | At the 60th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women, New York, NY

Sept. 14-Oct. 2, 2015 | At the September 2015 30th Session of the Human Rights Council, Geneva, Switzerland

July 20-24, 2015 | At the 9th Session of the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Geneva, Switzerland

July 22, 2015 | At the Economic and Social Council, New York, NY
On July 22, Center Attorney Leonardo Crippa addressed the Economic and Social Council on behalf of the Indian Law Resource Center, the National Congress of American Indians, the Native American Rights Fund, and the Ewiiaapaayp Band of Kumeyaay Indians, supporting the report and calling for, among other things, the full and effective participation of indigenous peoples in reforming the mandate and structure of the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and for developing new rules for indigenous governments to participate in the UN. The Economic and Social Council took note of the Secretary-General’s report and the report of the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues.

June 15-July 3, 2015 | At the 29th Session of the Human Rights Council, Geneva, Switzerland

April 20-May 1, 2015 | At the 14th Session of the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, New York, NY
Tribal leaders introduced a statement to the Permanent Forum on April 20, 2015, with proposals for follow-up work on the World Conference, including important details and recommendations for creating an effective implementing and monitoring body for the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, new rules for the participation of indigenous peoples’ governments in the UN, and UN action to combat violence against indigenous women. The statement also urges that indigenous governments have the opportunity to review, respond, and comment on the Secretary-General’s report and recommendations before it is submitted to the Economic and Social Council in July. The statement, though never offered to the Forum due to time limitations, was shared widely and was successfully filed with the Secretariat on behalf of 90 indigenous nations and 23 organizations in the Americas.
Read Full Statement

March 9-20, 2015 | At the 59th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women, New York, NY