Vulnerability and the Future of Families with Children in Europe

Family.jpgIn recognition of the 56th Commission for Social Development, the International Federation for Family Development and UNDESA/Division for Social Policy & Development (DSPD) organized a side event on the vulnerability of large families in Europe. Mr. Armella mentioned that there was a need for research on this topic so the European Union financed this research. The research had a multidisciplinary approach with the goal of enhancing the civil societies connection to policy making through data. Mr. Socias mentioned how the focus of the study was Europe but the information is relevant all over the world. He said that experiments are necessary for progress and the only way to take advantage of them is finding outcomes, analyzing them, and then acting accordingly. He said that a less supportive and weaker family leads to a cycle of less freedom.

Mr.Márki said his research was focused on understanding the motivations, living conditions, and general features of larger European families to see what policies meet their needs. He said that France and Italy had older parents therefore larger families. He compared countries with long and paid maternity leave like Hungary to Portugal where 70% of mothers have a full time job. Mr.Riederer talked about his research and the types of vulnerability including economic, psychological, and social. He stressed how important it is to provide help not only temporarily but to improve the situation in a sustainable manner. He concluded by talking about how family vulnerability is multidimensional and that policy could drastically improve the situation.  

Meeting: Side Event entitled “Vulnerability and the Future of Families with Children in Europe”

Date/Location: Thursday, February 1, 2017; 10:00- 11:30; Conference Room D, United Nations Headquarters, New York, NY

Speakers: Mr.Mario Armella, World President, International Federation for Family Development (IFFD); Mr. Ignacio Socias, Director of International Relations, International Federation for Family Development (IFFD), Partner, Families And Societies Consortium; Mr.László Márki, President,  European Large Families Confederation (ELFAC), Partner, Families And Societies Consortium; Mr. Bernhard Riederer, Wittgenstein Centre, Vienna Institute of Demography, Austrian Academy of Sciences, Co-leader, Families And Societies Work Package 10

Written By: WIT Representative Nicole Matsanov


Briefing by the United Nations System Senior Coordinator of Ebola Virus Disease

imagesDr. Nabarro stated that the current response to Ebola is the most extraordinary mobilization around a health issue he has ever seen. The current breakout is an issue that is deeply affecting society, economies, governments, and many aspects of global affairs—way beyond what ministries of health and health professionals are personally responsible for. People across many disciplines must therefore work together.

Although there have been “some signs of positive progress,” said Dr. Nabarro, “they are small signs.” In parts of West Africa, where communities are fully involved in the response and have proper resources, there are signs of a slowing of the outbreak. However, there are hotspot areas in which transmission is fierce. The response must learn to be flexible, bending to address the needs in areas where new hotspots emerge.

Essential services in affected countries are being undermined—access to health service for regular, typical accidents and health problems is limited; central services for poverty eradication have faltered; agriculture is being disturbed; access to education has suffered; and other functions of government are not working.

However, the World Bank and African Development Bank have given money directly to the governments of affected countries, ensuring that the capital exists to get health workers and responders the resources they need; communications capacities in affected countries are being increased; NGOs and UNICEF are involved in responding to the increasing number of orphans created by Ebola; UNMEER works to ensure community care facilities are created in areas touched by new outbreaks; and vaccines and experimental drugs have been in testing and production.

            A representative of Sierra Leone reminded listeners that we must also begin thinking about comprehensive post-Ebola recovery—we must invest in recovery so that affected countries can get back on track and working on development once Ebola is beaten.

Meeting: Briefing by the United Nations System Senior Coordinator for Ebola Virus Disease
Time: 12 November 2014
Location: Economic and Social Council Chamber, UN HQ, New York
Speakers: Dr. David Nabarro, UN Special Envoy for Ebola
Written by WIT Representative: Philip Bracey

Edited by WIT Representative: Aslesha Dhillon

Sustainable development and the world drug problem

Drug addiction is a serious health problem, leading to significant negative effects towards people and society. Many States have successfully adopted various national drug strategies, including primary prevention, early intervention, treatment, care, rehabilitation, recovery and social reintegration measures in minimizing the consequences of drug abuse.

Ambassador Sajdik commenced by emphasizing the issue of alternative development in tackling the drug problem in an integrated and balanced manner that respects dignity, solidarity, rule of law and human rights.He noted the importance of cooperation among civil society and non-governmental organizations in addressing the world drug problem. This would shape the post-2015 development agenda and the 2016 special session.Untitled

It is important to help farmers grow alternative crops to stabilize market and create decent jobs. We aim at promoting progress and peace”, said Ambassador Ban, the Secretary-General, in the video message. He agreed the negative impacts and side effects of drugs, and how it affects people’s lives and society. Mr. Fedotov stressed in his video message that good roads, reliable bridges and stable environments are equally important to farmers as crops and market place.

As the Executive Director of UNODC, he highlighted it is their goal to give farmers additional choices and move away from illicit drugs, this would allow them to live a life based equally on fairness and prosperity. Mr. Naidoo pointed out that the International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) was mandated to monitor and promote the three international drug control conventions.

The global drug control system aims at providing medical and scientific use, and also prevents diversion to illicit channels, trafficking and abuse. Mr. Peñaranda reported on the progress in the alternative, integral and sustainable development program. He addressed the impact of alternative crops in reducing poverty and the promotion of economic development, leading to a suppression in drug trafficking.

Meeting Title: High-level panel discussion “Sustainable development and the world drug problem: challenges and opportunities”
Speakers: H.E. Oh Joon (Republic of Korea), Vice-President of the Council; H.E. Martin Sajdik (Austria), President of the Economic and Social Council; H.E. Ban Ki-moon, Secretary-General of the United Nations (via video message); Mr. Yury Fedotov, Executive Director, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) (via video message); H.E. Norachit Sinhaseni, Permanent Representative of Thailand to the United Nations; Ms. Mary Chinery-Hesse, Commissioner, West Africa Commission on Drugs; Mr. Lochan Naidoo, President, International Narcotics Control Board (INCB); Mr. Aldo Lale-Demoz, Deputy Executive-Director, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime; Mr. Alberto Otárola Peñaranda, Executive Director of DEVIDA
Location: ECOSOC, United Nations HQ, New York
Date: 15 July 2014
Written By WIT representative: Samantha Kong
Edited by Apurv Gupta