Home » Plenary Item 9. Contributions by the Commission to the work of the Economic and Social Council

Plenary Item 9. Contributions by the Commission to the work of the Economic and Social Council

9: Contributions by the Commission to the work of the Economic and Social Council, in line with General Assembly resolutions 75/290 A and 75/290 B, including follow-up to and review and implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

ECOSOC: An update on the contributions made by ECOSOC: during our coordination segment on Jan 31/Feb 1st, chair put UNODC contributions to political agenda; provided updates on mid-term review. 2024 roundtable discussions w/ other ECOSOC subsidiaries to brief on the mid-term review ahead of the commission’s own review. WIll also cover key development issues related to our commitment. The HOPF will be held 15-17th July 2024, focussed on eliminating poverty and innovative solutions. WIll be held in advance of the SDG Review in September 2024. The CND contributions were made early march 2024 focussing on data responses on harmful effects of NPS/synthetics/etc, alternative development, safe handling of drugs and precursors, and int’l coop to address links between illicit trafficking and finance. Various summits are coming up this year. 

UNODC: Ensuring healthy lives and promoting wellbeing for all centres the 2030 agenda. Our efforts to achieve this goal and address WDP are complementary. UNODC in practice entails the methodology to measure the status and share/report the data with member states and databases to promote the SDG. High quality data and research is of utmost importance if evidence based decisions are to be made. On SDG 3 on the annual questionnaire the CND promotes expanding data collection on point 3.5 to strengthen treatment of drug and alcohol abuse, and 16.4 on the link between drugs, crime, and illicit financial flows. This year’s … has improved our data to measure these issues through clearer statistical decisions; also allows for better reporting. In 2023 UNODC had 5 regional capacity building events, >400 participants, 56% female, from 128 countries. Based on the data from there, UNODC/WHO aims to produce SDG indicator 3.5.1, measuring the coverage of treatment interventions, subject to data availability looking at 4th data cycles. … While data is available for over 100 countries, less than 35 have capacity to do the monitoring of coverage of treatment services; more international cooperation  and capacity building is required. Also UNODC is producing better measures of goal 16: since 2015, UNODC, UNHCR, UNDP, have closely coordinated w/ national institutions to develop better methodologies to make nationally relevant and globally comparable data on human rights and justice. For the first time, data was available on all goal 16 indicators; some country coverage continues to be limited and more work is needed to expand the expanse of data. Also, new project on measuring financial flow data; UNODC continues to support member states to track the data on financial flows, which will continue until 2026 which will support this effort and create new indicator data for participating countries. 

In 2021 the ‘Common Agenda’ was launched, outlining about 90 proposals for action, continuing on existing agreements, we have focussed on: 1 new agenda for peace, 2 rule of law, and 3 youth empowerment. UNODC has contributed to 12 action recommendations; this year, our common agenda will continue as an important political feature in the upcoming forums, including in the High Level Political Forum in July. Will review SDG 1,2,3, and 16 on hunger, climate action, and strong institutions. Also, will support the political declaration … the outcome of the summit will be on a pact of the future, to bring the attainment of SDGs back on track. To conclude:  UNODC reaffirms its commitment to help member states before the High Level Pol. Forum and Forum for the Future, for the present and future generations.

Thailand: Alternative Development at heart of our control strategies. We have learned from experience that it can contribute to meeting SDGs, implementing Alternate Development programs, we see more stable income and motivate people to have legitimate livelihoods. Helps reduce poverty, contributes to peaceful and inclusive communities, rule of law and good governance leaving no one behind. Emphasis on collaboration with partners per engagement with ethnic groups and local communities. With multi stakeholder collaboration. We have organised a series of events and with Germany and Peru we have tabled resolutions to mark the 10th anniversary of the guiding document on alternative development, which remains vital in addressing persistent and emerging challenges. We thank member states for support, particularly co sponsors. We will organise a conference to mark the 55th anniversary of our first alternative development programme. We invite stakeholders to the event to share best practices and examples for how to achieve sustainable development on the ground and end the world drug problem. Delegates can see the products of our alternative development program at our stand. We stand ready to make SDGs a reality through alternative development.

Canada: Since 2015 we have created ambitious SDGs and we hold this topic very dear.In particular the intersectionality of SDGs and approach to drug policy based in human rights and public health. Our Prime Minister is continuing to co-chair the group for SDGs along with the Prime Minister of Barbados. This underscores leadership Canada has in 20130 agenda and our efforts to drive gender equality and autonomy among women and girls. Ensuring access to quality education for all and diverse inclusion for all. In 2023 we conducted a second national voluntary review towards the 2030 agenda. Review shows ongoing efforts to reach SDGs and reaffirm all efforts to support evidence based decision making. We recognize advancing gender equality and empowering women and girls is a more effective way to accelerate progress on all SDGs ensuring nobody is left behind. People with disabilities and people who use drugs including indigenous and marginalised people’s experience difficulties with health services across the country. 3 of the 4 resolutions this year support SDGs 1, 3, and 17. We continue efforts to tackle global health concerns and reduce inequality. Encourage UNODC to tackle health and human rights. Effective interagency collaboration promotes peace and security, development, human rights and the 2030 agenda and we welcome the human rights experts contributions to CND and we support the UN Common position. 

United States of America: We recognize CND as the primary decision making body and we see interconnectedness contributing to UNODCs technical expertise. Looking forward we want to underline that SDGs and tackling the world drug problem are complimentary. Need to tackle the fertile conditions facilitating trafficking and production of drugs.

Colombia: We would like to reiterate our commitment to the comprehensive balance of the SDGs, understanding that domestic measures are part of the whole strategy. We need to take collective global action to address the crises which affect us all and threaten our species; biodiversity loss, and address global threats which threaten our survival. But we must think beyond 2030; Colombia is making a new proposal on sustainable development for a carbon-neutral plan. Without this we cannot be sure of our survival or ability to be sustainable in nature; putting humans and nature at the heart of our activities, without neglecting the fight against crime. We need new multilateral commitment, hopefully in the Summit for the Future will help us to do this together. 

IDPC Consortium: I am making this intervention on behalf of the International Drug Policy Consortium, a global network of over 190 NGOs coming together to promote drug policies grounded in social justice and human rights. Traditionally, development considerations in drug policy have been restricted to the narrow concept of ‘alternative development’, with the end goal being eradication rather than a commitment to ensuring sustainable development. This is a major concern because illegal crop cultivation remains concentrated in some of the most impoverished, remote, and conflict-torn areas in the world. In those areas, local communities tend to have little access to secure land and water rights, basic infrastructure and public services such as roads, healthcare and education, or employment opportunities in the legal economy. At the UN, various countries have attempted to broaden the definition of ‘alternative development’, focusing on long-term development strategies to provide sustainable livelihoods, with eradication no longer being considered as the sole, or even an important goal, of the approach. This is a positive development, which is aligned with SDGs 1.1 on the eradication of extreme poverty, as well as SDG 1.4 which seeks to ensure equal rights to economic resources, as well as access to basic services, ownership and control over land. But progress on the ground remains very limited, with affected farmers continuing to face far too many challenges, even when alternative development programmes are being implemented. For many, poor sequencing has had devastating effects on local communitie, with many farmers and their families being faced with no other choice but to start cultivating again, often in more remote areas, to avoid falling into abject poverty. In other countries, monocultures have resulted in significant environmental damage without providing long-term adequate means of subsistence for local farmers. Sometimes, alternative crops are simply too costly or impractical. The situation is particularly concerning for women. The lives of women in illegal crop cultivation areas are marked by intersecting layers of vulnerability and discrimination because they are women, because they are rural farmers, and because their livelihoods depend on illegal activities. We urge you to adopt and implement drug policies that are truly aligned with development objectives – and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Success should no longer be tracked against eradication and reductions in cultivation or production, but instead in terms of progress made towards gender equity, access to land for men and women, access to basic infrastructure, safe water, education and employment. And there is a need to leverage the legal regulation of internationally controlled plants, both for medicinal purposes and adult recreational purposes, to ensure that traditional farmers are no longer left behind, but instead fully and meaningfully involved in legal markets for cannabis, coca and other plants.

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