Today, former Presidents Tarja Halonen (Finland) and Joaquim Chissano (Mozambique) announced the launch of the High Level task Force for ICPD. Halonen & Chissano will chair the High Level Task Force which will aim to “to galvanize political will and social mobilization for sexual and reproductive health and rights.”
The High Level Task Force for ICPD is made up of representatives from government, civil society, UN agencies, and other relevant stakeholders. It is intended that the High Level Task Force for ICPD will strengthen the implementation of the ICPD PoA, advance sexual and reproductive health beyond 2014 and integrate sexual and reproductive health and rights into the post-2015 development agenda. As part of its mandate, the High Level Task Force is tasked with advancing key and emerging issues related to the ICPD PoA and sexual and reproductive health and rights, including unresolved issues, critical gaps since the PoAs adoption.
Within this context, the Youth Coalition for Sexual and Reproductive Rights announces its priority issues which we urge the High Level Task Force to prioritize in its key issues to address.
YCSRR recommendations for the High Level Task Force on ICPD:
1. Ensure young women and girls’ right to access to safe abortion.
The YCSRR calls for the elimination of all laws that restrict or prohibit access to safe and comprehensive abortion services. The YCSRR calls for laws and policies that protect and respect women’s right to access safe and affordable abortion services, free of discrimination and stigma.
2. Ensure the Sexual and Reproductive Rights of LGBTIQ youth; including the elimination of discrimination against LGBTIQ youth
The YCSRR calls on the international community to actively recognize and uphold the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ) youth. The YCSRR calls for the elimination of laws and policies that discriminate against LGBTIQ youth, based on their sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI); including criminalization based on SOGI.
3. Advance the Sexual and Reproductive Rights of youth and adolescents, particularly young women and adolescent girls.
The YCSRR calls for complete recognition of the sexual and reproductive rights of adolescents and youth, particularly young women and girls; through, but not limited to, the provision of accessible information, comprehensive and integrated sexual and reproductive health services. The YCSRR calls on governments to actively promote the empowerment of adolescent girls and young women, to allow them to make free decisions about their bodies and futures, and by ensuring that all law, policies and programmes be based on the principles of gender equality and human rights.
4. Ensure the Right to Education, including Comprehensive Sexuality Education.
The YCSRR calls on governments to uphold young people’s right to comprehensive sexuality education; and urges them to ensure that young people have access to both formal and non-formal education. Furthermore, we call on governments to fully integrate comprehensive sexuality education into all levels of education. The YCSRR calls for comprehensive sexuality education curricula that is rights based and promotes gender equality, non-discrimination, evidence-based information and elimination of gender-based inequality and violence.
5. Support Laws, policies & programmes based on our rights, not our numbers.
The YCSRR calls on all stakeholders to frame discussions regarding young people as rights-holders, rather than a demographic. Young people are more than numbers, we are individuals who require legal protection through the respect and promotion of our human rights. When our rights are guaranteed, including our sexual and reproductive rights, we are better positioned to make free and informed decisions regarding our health, well-being and futures.
For more information regarding the ICPD review process, please click here.
For more information regarding the High Level Task Force, please visit the NGOs Beyond 2014 Coalition website:
- Maria Jose Alcalá appointed Director of the Secretariat for the High Level Task Force for ICPD.
- Former Presidents Halonen of Finland and Chissano of Mozambique to co-chair the High-Level Task Force for Promoting Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights.
Read the official press release marking the launch of the High Level Task Force for ICPD:
Media Release: New High Level Task Force for ICPD to prioritize gender equality, youth health and rights, in international development efforts