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World without Wars and Violence

International Humanist Organisation - Official Website

Consultative status with the UN Economic and Social Council opens new possibilities for WWW

In the UN Charter, signed on the 26th of June 1945, six main organs within the institution were established: the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), the General Assembly, The Security Council, the Trusteeship Council, The International Court of Justice and the Secretariat.  Currently the UN is working to strengthen cooperation with non-governmental organisations (NGOs) throughout the system and in all areas of its activity.  Many UN agencies and their organisms carry out periodic consultations with NGOs and new forms of management and government of UN entities are emerging that count on the participation of civil society.

Within this context, in July this year ECOSOC recognised World without Wars as having Special Consultative Status.  This status gives the possibility for civil society organisations to work together with the United Nations in a common global agenda, and offers them the possibility to act in several ambits, among which is included the work with other organisations, cooperation with organisms of the United Nations and new possibilities of action within WwW.

Regarding the work with other organisations, ECOSOC makes available a data base containing social organisations from around the world which can be used for searching for contacts, sending communications, sharing news and participating in forums.

Regarding the work at the heart of the UN, consultative associations can, for example, consult the UN Secretariat, present declarations to the Economic and Social Council and be informed about the provisional programme of work, carry out studies for the Commission in a specific field, be consulted by ECOSOC, request the General Secretary to put items of special interest on the provisional agenda of the Council, participate in meetings and have access to the United Nations, designate official representatives in the UN Headquarters in New York and the UN offices in Geneva and Vienna or use the library and UN facilities for conferences or small meetings, to cite a few possibilities of immediate interest.

Regarding the third point, World without Wars is a grass-roots organisation and its prime interest is to create a social movement capable of influencing against wars and violence in all social ambits.  Therefore, in the World Coordination Team we are working on the formation of a Commission that can coordinate these new opportunities to strengthen the work of the base teams.  It would be, in short, to facilitate the flow of useful information towards the base teams on the one hand and on the other to make available the mechanisms, in a coordinated way, so that we may directly benefit from these possibilities.

This would translate to every team that is developing projects in accordance with the ECOSOC agenda to have tools available to carry out direct consultations, take part in meetings and take their petitions or conclusions to the corresponding organisms.

Institutionally, the new status could open new possibilities of action and collaboration with other interesting organisations: national and international organisms and associations, universities and educational institutions, public administrations, etc.

We have, in summary, a new tool for relations and working at our disposition that we can start to use.

Montserrat Prieto
World Coordination Team of WWW