Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Sustainable Human Rights Cities

Sustainable Human Rights Cities – Cities of Dignity - Cities of Freedom in The Post-2015 Sustainable Development Goals –
PDHRE, People’s Movement of Human Rights Learning, an NGO In consultative status with the UN, has been for the last 25 years a champion of introducing at the community level, in many forms, an ongoing process of learning human rights, to be understood by the learners as a way of life…-- a powerful strategy for economic, social and human development.
For that purpose, since 1997, PDHRE has been facilitating the development of human rights cities - the first one in Rosario, Argentina, a community of more than a million people- evoking in most region of the world discussions that lead to action on the practical meaning of Human Rights to daily life…-- people learning the relevance of the Holistic, comprehensive , interconnected and interrelated human rights framework that leads toward transformation and meaningful change.
The learners, women and men come together to shine the light on a newly curved road on which they walk to discover new horizons, where human rights are being realized for all step by step! . They are guided by the knowledge they have acquired, examining, analyzing and claiming ownership of -HUMAN RIGHTS AS AWAY OF LIFE – some say human rights as a home!! --A place where people develop critical thinking and systemic analysis, learning to decipher between symptoms and causes and the essence of real equality.
Such a process of ongoing learning is to insure that the future of humanity will be void of the imposing autocratic 3 “P”s: Patriarchy, Politics and Power that are shamelessly obstructing the development of a world that is: Free from fear and need. In the learning process women and men join to break through the vicious cycle of humiliation never again to exchange their equality for survival as they join in moving charity to dignity!!
To make this experience and action part of the SDG - Sustainable Development Goals, we have been discussing with several top UN authorities and agencies, including international CSOs and several Ambassadors to the UN, the need to integrate such learning across the P2015 agenda, so that people around the world, for whom this public policy on SDG is being created, the imperative of human rights learning become an integral, organic, an absolutely necessary part. It is important to note that a special international FUND will need to be crated to support these activities.
We believe that in its vision and mission and the contribution it stands to make this is a unique and exciting plan, The proposed extraordinary combination of its partners and underlining purpose is overwhelming yet possible.
To achieve these objectives and goals in a practical way we are proposing the following plan
1. Identify 10 International, development civil society organization, each working in about 100 countries around the world, where local activists attend to the specific implementation and actions of these organizations’ development agenda.( --avoiding Neo colonialism )
2. UNDP Calls for a meeting/retreat with leaders of these 10 organizations to include: UN Women, UNFPA and UNICEF, several Ambassadors to the UN with some UN high officials, such as Amina Mohammed. ( The CSO now in discussion are : WCC , Civicus, Care, Save the Children, PLAN International, Oxfam, the Huairou Commission, Greenpeace, Fian, and PFH-Exchange –health organization. Several more will be Identified.)
3. The 10 chosen CSOs that will agree to join this extraordinary initiative, will be asked to identify together 10 countries in which all of them work-- at least one in every international region, where they all work. Each CSO will accept the overview and general responsibility for the program in one of the ten countries. Their responsibility will be to assume, with possible collaboration with UN agencies – and more- to facilitate the development of:


4. From the start each of the SHRC will be developed also as a HUB of learning, action and experience to be used to demonstrate the commitments of local communities to implement the SDG, guided by the human rights framework. Learning and actions to be undertaken in the City will be radiated to one or two villages and/or towns to lay the foundation of future national participation and be understood as such from the outset.
5. Local representative of each of the CSOs in each of the 10 countries will become members of the steering committee that will be designing the process and selecting ways and means that will have the specific city become a Sustainable Human Rights City within its religion, culture, economic and social issues, and historic memory.
6. Forms and procedures of ongoing reporting and communication between an appointed international executive committee and the representative of the 10 internationals development organizations, will be created to document and analyze the process in each of the 10 cities. These will be collected and analyzed for the purpose of learning how practically human rights can become fully integrated, as called for by the UN/SG of the implementation of the P2015.
7. Data collected recorded and examined will enable the designing of a detailed blue-print to develop within 5 to 10 years, in about 100 countries around the world, 100 Sustainable Human Rights Cites and national Hubs.
In summation: The expressed objectives and goals of these efforts and community activities is to have a world that all its inhabitants, the many billions of us, learn, know and understand the meaning of human rights to the future of their community and this of humankind!! – and take action. An ongoing process for all to know human rights is similar to as preventive health care.. where women and men joining to transform the future of humanity, being guided by the light of the holistic and practical human rights framework for which we have no other option what every or specific entry point for evoking such transformation is.
It is expected that as part of developing these initial activities an international body composed of well known personalities and activists will be crated to give credibility and visibility to this noble effort to make sure that in the whole wide world no one will be left behind and the meaning and relevance of human rights to people daily lives will be known and practices by all as a way of life!.
1. Empower citizens to know their human rights in order to claim their human rights.
2. Include and inspire Girls, Boys, Men and Women living with human dignity, in community, in harmony with one another and with the natural world.
3. Are an evolution, not a revolution.
4. Use collaboration and consensus to change the underlying values and attitudes that contribute to violence and misery.
5. Encourage free and frank dialogue, truth and reconciliation.
6. Citizens seek long-term changes in behaviour, not a short-term focus on violations of human rights.
7. Understand that genuine wealth lies in sharing our collective experience and wisdom.
8. Commit to meaningful participation for all in the political, economic, societal and cultural life of the community.
9. Learn and act according to our universal human rights, which define a shared moral and legal framework for living in dignity within our varied communities.
10. Is a community of lifelong learning, without a “finish line.”
11. Evolve from within the community, accommodating its unique cultural norms and behaviours, and its own approaches to consensus and coalition building.
12. The commonality in each Human Rights City is to enable “freedom from fear” and “freedom from want” within their own communities.
13. Learning together also means unlearning the inhumanity, violence and injustice that plague the human condition.
14. Learning from the experiences of people is as valuable as traditional teaching to embed the qualities of humility, empathy and mutual respect that underlie human rights.
15. The voices of people deprived of human rights—and thus of their human dignity—are indispensable guides to learning our shared duties to the community.
16. Through dialogue, interaction and learning we move from information to knowledge to achieve social and economic justice within a human rights framework.
17. Learning human rights in cities and communities harnesses the energies of all people to develop a shared global culture of human rights.
18. Embrace inclusive, participatory and responsive systems of governance.
-- Satya Brata Das, PDHRE People’s Movement for Human Rights Learning, 14 May 2014

By PDHRE , Peoples Movement for Human Rights Learning
Contact person: Shulamith Koenig –

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