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Human Rights Council

A Resource for Promoting Dialogue on Creating a New UN Convention on the Rights of Older Persons 
Nine international ageing organizations joined to prepare this report highlighting the need for a UN Convention on the Rights of Older Persons. They believe that a Convention (or treaty among nations) will ensure that older women and men can realize their rights. With a new UN convention, and the assistance of a Special Rapporteur, governments can have an explicit legal framework, guidance and support to assure that older people's rights are realized in our increasingly aging societies. To read key messages, click here.

Report: Latin America and the Caribbean: The Challenges of International Protection of Human Rights of Older Persons (March 22, 2010)
(Report in Spanish)

This CELADE report reviews the situation regarding human rights international law and older persons on and international and regional levels. Currently there are various theoretical and policy considerations on the human rights of specific groups, with special attention to the rights of older people. This report presents arguments justifying the adoption of an international convention and the appointment of a special rapporteur.

Report: World: Report of the Independent Expert on the Question of Human Rights and Extreme Poverty, Magdalena Sepulveda Carmona (March 31, 2010)
Magdalena Sepulveda Carmona, an independent expert, focuses on non-contributory pensions, also known as social pensions. A social pension is a cash benefit received by persons above a given age that does not require prior compulsory contributions from beneficiaries, employers, or the State. Carmona is working to make sure that these pensions are in accordance with core human rights standards. Submitted to the 14th session of the Human Rights Council, this report advocates older person's right to social security to Member States of the UN. 

Report: World: Position Paper for the UN Commission for Sustainable Development Submitted by the NGO Committee on Ageing-NY (April 26, 2010)
Persons of all ages, including older people, require transport and mobility. Such access is essential for sustainable development. The Ageing NGOs are asking the UN Commission for Sustainable Development to include older persons in the necessary planning for an energy efficient, multi-transportation mode outcome in a multi-generational society. 

Video: World: "Regional Perspectives on a New Human Rights Instrument for Older People: Concerns and Benefits" (February 2010)
Leaders of the UN’s Third Committee continue to seek a compromise on a Resolution to create an “open-ended working group” to examine the feasibility of a convention on the rights of older persons. What’s the back story? Watch this video featuring UN delegates who talk about the complex regional issues they face in considering a convention. GAA and its partners sponsored this discussion last February.

World: Joint NGO Statement to the 48th UN Commission for Social Development (December 2009)
To give a voice to civil society at the 48th UN Commission for Social Development, which will take place next February, Global Action on Aging, along with other NGOs, agreed on a joint statement. On Human Rights Day, December 10, 2009, this statement called for strengthening the rights of older persons worldwide. The NGOs underline the fact that older people cannot access their human rights. They recommend the adoption of a global human rights instrument to assure such rights.

World: Human Rights Council Advisory Committee Adopts its Rules of Procedure and Closes Debate on the Right to Food and the Human Rights of the Elderly (August 6, 2009)
The newly established Advisory Committee to the Human Rights Council recently agreed to include the protection of the rights of older people as a priority for its work. Ms. Chinsung Chung of Korea was assigned the task to come up with a working paper outlining ways to protect and preserve the rights of older people. This is one response to a growing need to draw attention to the rights of older people.

Report: World: Urgent Call to Protect Older Women and Their Human Rights (February 18, 2009)

A joint statement, advocating older women’s rights was recently adopted by a group of NGOs at the UN. Recent UN Population Division data indicate that the numbers of the aged are increasing worldwide and that there is a gendered aspect to ageing, with women comprising the majority of older persons. However, no binding legal international document exists either on old age or older women. The joint statement urged member states to adopt a multitude of recommendations including establishing a General Recommendation on the human rights of older women, alongside a Convention on the human rights for older persons. 

Global Food Crisis and Older Persons

United Nations: Launching Geneva Lecture Series, Secretary-General Says Global Food Crisis Chance To Address Root Problems Of World's Poorest, Majority Of Whom Are Small Farmers (April 30,2008) 
Global Action on Aging always keeps an eye on the UN’s work. The UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon spoke in Geneva about the situation of the world’s 100 billion poorest people. He focused on the food crisis, the risks in the current situation, the missed opportunities to take action over the last recent years. And he projected important goals to respond to the current crisis. Interestingly, he speaks about his personal childhood experience of hunger and poverty and mentions his grandparents’ situation as they suffered from starvation in Korea. 

United Nations: Press Conference By United Nations Special Rapporteur On Right To Food (April 26,2008)
Global Action on Aging updates our coverage on the food crisis, featuring the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food Jean Ziegler. (DATE) He pointed outs that food is a human right in his forthright speech at the New York Headquarters Press Conference on April 26, 2008, in New York. He showed that 100,000 people around the world are dying daily from hunger-related causes, and that one in six were gravely or permanently undernourished. Zeigler pointed to how the hunger crisis is creating a serious refugee problem. He criticized sanctions on bio-fuel because they produce inefficient results. The oil and auto companies have yet to yield to the human right for food. And the poor of the world continue to suffer.

UNESCO: Global Food Crisis is Unavoidable (April 15, 2008)
(Article in Russian)
Governments must swiftly change their farming methods to avoid worldwide food crisis, social breakdown and environmental collapse, says a recent UNESCO report. Agricultural production comes at high environmental and social costs while soaring food prices are plunging millions of people into potentially deadly poverty. “The status quo is no longer an option,” say the experts. 

United Nations: Food Crisis Is Now Emergency (April 14, 2008)
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has addressed the 2008 food crisis, saying that it is very important to give high priority to this crisis. He urges short term action. Many people are hungry and may die of starvation. He wants governments to support the UN World Food Programme with a $500 Million emergency aid donation by May 1, 2008. The United Nations is key to this urgent campaign.

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