SGI actively participated in the 40th session of the Human Rights Council (HRC) from 25 February to 22 March.
On 8 March, Elisa Gazzotti of SGI, on behalf of the NGO Working Group on Human Rights Education and Learning (NGO WG on HREL) delivered an oral statement co-signed by 17 organizations. Resolution A/HRC/RES/39/3 adopted on 27 September 2018 requested the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) to prepare a Plan of Action for the fourth phase of the World Programme for Human Rights Education, in consultation with all stakeholders, and to submit it during the forty-second session of the HRC. In this context, the NGO WG on HREL provided key points for the draft of the Plan of Action, including the importance of indicators for measuring the impact and progress of human rights education and of an inclusive Plan of Action, which adequately reflects young people’s voices.
In addition, SGI contributed to the drafting of the written statement submitted by the International Organization for the Right to Education and Freedom of Education (OIDEL) on behalf of the NGO WG on HREL. SGI was among the 14 organizations that co-signed this written statement, which emphasizes and elaborates the same main points highlighted in the oral statement.
On 7 March, Hayley Ramsay-Jones of SGI spoke at a side event titled “State Duty to Protect – Corporate Responsibility to Respect.” The event focused on emerging challenges and state and corporate responsibility, and it was co-sponsored by the NGO Alliance on Global Concerns, Foundation for Gaia and Planetary Association for Clean Energy (PACE). Ramsay-Jones spoke about the weaponization of technology, in particular, fully autonomous weapons systems, the inherent biases programmed into algorithms and the ethical and human rights dilemma that they pose. She also gave an overview of the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots, which SGI joined recently, and the need for negotiations to begin on a preemptive ban treaty. Other panellists included: Olivier Vuillemin from PACE and Vita de Wall from Foundation for GAIA. The side event was moderated by Mintze van der Velde from Towards One World.