Advocacy Update for the 2019 High Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development

What’s happening at the 2019 HLPF?

The annual High Level Political Forum (HLPF) on Sustainable Development will be held under the auspices of the Economic and Social Council in New York, July 9 – 18, 2019. This is an important year for key population advocates, as the HLPF theme “Empowering people and ensuring inclusiveness and equality” will include review of several crucial Goals:  10 (reducing inequalities); 16 (peace, justice, and strong institutions); and 17 (partnership for the Goals).

The HLPF annotated programme details the numerous thematic sessions, including session chairs and other speakers; the summary programme includes the 47 countries sharing Voluntary National Review (VNR) reports during the High Level Ministerial Segment. A tentative programme of side events at the HLPF has also been released.We particularly encourage you to attend MPact’s Side Event:  Empowered while Criminalized: Multi-Stakeholder Strategies for Combatting Stigma, Discrimination, Violence, and Inequalities

On Friday 12 July afternoon, join MPact and partners at the UN in New York or online for an interactive panel discussion and keynote by Justice Edwin Cameron of the Constitutional Court of South Africa.

Discriminatory and punitive laws, inequality, and experiences of stigma, discrimination and violence further marginalise people living with HIV and key populations: gay men and other men who have sex with men, sex workers, people who use drugs, transgender people, and people in prisons and other closed settings. These barriers prevent people living with HIV and key populations from accessing quality acceptable health services.

Even in extremely challenging environments, there are good practices, innovative strategies and multi-stakeholder approaches that have successfully addressed criminalization, stigma and discrimination. This event aims to discuss effective multistakeholder approaches to realizing the critical targets under SDGs 10 and 16 and harnessing synergies with SDGs 3 and 5 in settings where people living with HIV and key populations are criminalized and stigmatized. The event will convene representatives of Governments, UN agencies, affected communities and other stakeholders to openly share promising practices and success stories of the type of partnerships needed to realize the SDGs and to ensure that no one is left behind.

Join us for this interactive discussion, in person, or online.  Please register to receive a pass.

Register to attend the UN Side event on Friday 12 July 13:15 EST (NYC time) here, or join online here.

This side event is organized by UNAIDS, UNDP, UN OHCHR, the Permanent Missions to the UN of Argentina, Australia, Central African Republic, South Africa, Aidsfonds, PITCH, Frontline AIDS, and GNP+.

Engaging Governments During the HLPF

MPact and Free Space Process (FSP) partners are pleased to share two informational Technical Briefs prior to the HLPF, which could help advocates to influence their government representatives:

  • Achieving Sustainable Development Goal 16 for All: Linking HIV, Key Populations, and Human Rights: This brief analyzes five targets within Goal 16 and explains how progress in these areas is essential to ending HIV, to protecting and respecting human rights, and to achieving the ambitious 2030 Agenda. Insufficient attention has been given to the ways key populations are implicated in this Goal, and this brief outlines the ways that discriminatory and punitive policies, violence, lack of inclusive and participatory decision-making, and restrictions to fundamental freedoms and access to information create serious barriers to the realization of SDG 16 for criminalized populations.
  • To Achieve Sustainable Development Goal 17, Invest in the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria: This brief outlines the ways that replenishment of the Global Fund can serve as a model for achieving the broader call for Universal Health Coverage and achieving the 2030 Agenda. This year the Global Fund is seeking a replenishment of US$14 billion to sustain its work through 2022, and donors should realize the complementarity of Replenishment and Goal 17.

Finally, another key opportunity for advocates  will be the High Level Meeting on Universal Health Coverage (which is enshrined in SDG Goal 3 Target 3.8), which will take place at the UN General Assembly on Monday 23 September, followed by a SDG Summit 24-25 September. These two meetings will both produce Political Declarations, to ensure governments remain committed to achieving UHC and the SDGs by 2030.

To learn more about the HLPF and how to get involved, listen to the Recording and view the PowerPoint from the Friday 28 June community update webinar, organised in collaboration with COC Nederlands, OutRight Action International, and RFSL.

If you will be in New York for the HLPF, contact MPact Senior Policy Advisor, Stephen Leonelli:  sleonelli@mpactglobal.org