Commission for Social Development

Officials at the UN and civil society were watching this Commission with great anticipation. It was the first major UN event scheduled after the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were passed in September, and the UN Paris Climate Change conference in December. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said “This is a crucially important time for humanity. The delivery of our 2mandate (from the SDGs, Paris) begins this year.” After the excitement of the Forum, there were some disappointments in the Commission itself.  This was a “policy” year so some resolutions were passed to be sent to the General Assembly, but—unlike at other commissions, we did not get access to the documents until they were already completed ( and there were limited opportunities to speak from the floor. However, there were some positive highlights: two women from civil society (Anna Martinez de Luco—a former UNANIMA intern and Vedruna sister!—and Cristina Diaz of ATD 4th World) gave stunning panel presentations. Our NGO committee presented a good Civil Society Declaration, centering on Inequality, to the Commission. And see the great banner we made to hang on the UN gates? To read the Declaration, go to the committee website at click the What We Do button, and in the drop- down menu find Commission for Social Development.  The Declaration is in English, French, and Spanish.


UNANIMA submitted a written intervention for the Commission. It is UN document number  E/CN.5/2016/NGO/6  entitled “Climate Change and its Impact on Social Development Today.” The entire office staff played a role in its writing, and we used an “on the ground” example from one of our interns.It was submitted jointly with the Dominican Federation, because collaborative documents are more likely to be accepted! You can find it on our website at