Challenges, achievements and aspirations to be shared as civil society gears up for General Assembly High Level Meeting on AIDS
08 April 2011
The United Nations General Assembly hall will host a new format of interactive dialogue between civil society organizations and United Nations member states on how better to respond to HIV on 8 April 2011.
The debates are taking place as part of the informal Civil Society Hearing being held at the UN in New York which is presided over by the President of the 65th session of the United Nations General Assembly Mr Joseph Deiss. The event provides a platform for UN member states to engage with civil society representatives and hear their views on how to further the AIDS response. This will in turn inform discussions at the High Level Meeting on AIDS which is being held in United Nations General Assembly, New York, from 8-10 June 2011.
A broad consortium of participants from civil society organizations from across the world are assembling at the UN to engage in the exchange. The participants represent a cross section of the civil society response to the epidemic, including people living with HIV and people representing population groups most affected by the epidemic.
This is a unique opportunity for member states to learn from the people who are living the epidemic and provoking real change
Kate Thomson, Head of Civil Society Partnerships at UNAIDS.
“This is a unique opportunity for member states to learn from the people who are living the epidemic and provoking real change,” said Kate Thomson, Head of Civil Society Partnerships at UNAIDS. “We hope that in the lead up to the High Level Meeting on HIV these debates will put more emphasis and attention on the main issues of concern to civil society and that these issues will be reflected in the final declaration.”
After the official opening by Mr Deiss, the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, Michel Sidibé, the Executive Director of UNAIDS and a representative from the Association Nationale de Soutien aux Séropositifs et aux Malades du SIDA, three panels will be held in the form of moderated discussions. Debate is expected to take place on the following three themes:
- Enhancing community-level access: Opportunities for healing social and systemic ills;
- A new generation of national partnerships: Diversity in dialogue; and
- Synergies among global movements: Opportunities for shared action.
The three panels will comprise of panellists representing civil society, member states and an eminent person. Each will be overseen by a moderator who will call on other participants to intervene from the floor. This is the first time this format has been used in the General Assembly Hall.
The outcome of the discussions will form part of the preparatory process for the High Level Meeting on AIDS in June. The General Assembly President will prepare a summary report from the event which will be issued as an official General Assembly document prior to the High Level Meeting and serve as a reference for member states during negotiations around a new declaration on HIV.
The debates will be broadcast live on www.un.org/webcast
See below for the full agenda (all times are EST):
Informal Interactive Hearing with Civil Society for the High Level on HIV Friday 8 April 2011
- Opening Session chaired by the President of the General Assembly
- Opening remarks by the President of the General Assembly, the UN Secretary General, The Executive Director of UNAIDS and Ms Jeanne Gapiya of Association Nationale de Soutien aux Séropositifs et aux Malades du SIDA
- Panel One: Enhancing Community Level Access: Opportunities for Healing Social Ills
- Panel Two: A New Generation of Partnerships: Diversity in Dialogue
- Press conference
- Panel Three: Synergies among Global Movements: Opportunities for Shared Action
- Closing Session
- Chaired by the President of the General Assembly
- Closing remarks by the President of the General Assembly, UNAIDS Executive Director and the Programme Coordinator of the Friends of Life Organisation.