Item 3 : Respecting minority rights as a means of preventing or mitigating the impact of humanitarian crises
This session will identify and discuss key factors that lead to humanitarian crises — such as those resulting from conflicts, natural and man-made disasters and pandemics — having a disproportionate impact on minority groups. Participants will examine how that disproportionate impact on minority communities could be avoided or mitigated through thorough and participative planning and contingency plans. The session will also remind that minority rights protection and minority participation in public life can contribute to the prevention of conflict and should be fundamental components of early warning mechanisms. The session will consider ways to ensure that international, regional, national and local humanitarian actors systematically take into account the needs of minorities and other vulnerable groups in their planning, risk assessments and contingency plans. Participants will seek to identify effective strategies that will enable Governments and humanitarian actors to establish trusted channels of communication with communities at risk, including minority communities, before crises occur. Such communication is critical in order to collect accurate information and data about minority groups to develop plans, including contingency plans; and in order to ensure the meaningful participation of minorities in the development of such plans. This session will also reflect on the responsibility of all States with regard to reducing the phenomenon of statelessness, which often disproportionately affects minorities and increases their vulnerability during crises.
- Dr Volker Türk, Assistant High Commissioner for Protection, United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Refugees, UNHCR
- Dr Ojot Miru Ojulu, Former OHCHR Minority Fellow and Advocacy Officer at Lutheran World Federation
- Ms Maria Luisa Silva, Director of Geneva Office, United Nations Programme for Development, UNDP
- Ms Erlendy Cuero Bravo, Vice-president of the National Association of Displaced Afro-Colombians, AFRODES
Programme of work