United Nations

A/RES/50/81


General Assembly

Distr. GENERAL  
50th session
13 March 1996


Fiftieth session
Agenda item 105


                  RESOLUTION ADOPTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY

              [without reference to a Main Committee (A/50/728)]


              50/81.      World Programme of Action for Youth to
                          the Year 2000 and Beyond


      The General Assembly,

      Recognizing that young people in all countries are both a major
human resource for development and key agents for social change,
economic development and technological innovation,

      Bearing in mind that the ways in which the challenges and
potentials of young people are addressed by policy will influence
current social and economic conditions and the well-being and
livelihood of future generations,

      Acknowledging that young women and men in all parts of the world
aspire to full participation in the life of society,

      Recognizing that the decade since the observance of International
Youth Year: Participation, Development and Peace has been a period of
fundamental political, economic and socio-cultural change in the
world,

      Acknowledging the contribution that non-governmental youth
organizations could make in improving dialogue and consultations with
the United Nations system on the situation of youth,

      Recalling its resolution 45/103 of 14 December 1990, in which it
requested the Secretary-General to prepare a draft world youth
programme of action towards the year 2000 and beyond,

      Recalling also its resolution 49/152 of 23 December 1994 on the
International Youth Year, in which it requested the Commission for
Social Development at its thirty-fourth session to consider further
the draft world programme of action for youth towards the year 2000
and beyond,


      Having considered the report of the Economic and Social
Council,  1/

      1.    Adopts the World Programme of Action for Youth to the Year
2000 and Beyond, annexed hereto, as an integral part of the present
resolution, including the ten priority areas identified therein,
namely, education, employment, hunger and poverty, health,
environment, drug abuse, juvenile delinquency, leisure-time
activities, girls and young women and the full and effective
participation of youth in the life of society and in decision-making;

      2.    Invites Governments, with the support of the international
community, non-governmental organizations and the public and private
sectors, as well as youth organizations in particular, to implement
the Programme of Action by undertaking the relevant activities
outlined therein;

      3.    Requests the Secretary-General to report to it at its fifty-
second session, through the Commission for Social Development and the
Economic and Social Council, on the progress made in the
implementation of the Programme of Action, taking into account the
promotion of integrated reporting;

      4.    Invites Member States, once again, to include, whenever
possible, youth representatives in their delegations to the General
Assembly and other meetings of relevant United Nations bodies, with a
view to stimulating the participation of young women and men in the
implementation of the Programme of Action.

                                                          91st plenary meeting
                                                              14 December 1995


                                     Annex

                      WORLD PROGRAMME OF ACTION FOR YOUTH
                          TO THE YEAR 2000 AND BEYOND


                                   CONTENTS

                                                              Paragraphs

PREAMBLE ...................................................   1 - 2

STATEMENT OF PURPOSE .......................................   3 - 4

 I.   UNITED NATIONS DECLARATION OF INTENT ON YOUTH:  
      PROBLEMS AND POTENTIALS ..............................   5 - 8

II.   DEVELOPMENT SETTING ..................................   9 - 12

III.  STRATEGIES AND POLICY SPECIFICS .....................   13 - 17

IV.   PRIORITY AREAS ......................................   18 - 107

      A. Education ........................................  21 - 32

      B. Employment .......................................  33 - 39

      C. Hunger and poverty ...............................  40 - 47

      D. Health ...........................................  48 - 63

      E. Environment ......................................  64 - 72

      F. Drug abuse .......................................  73 - 85

      G. Juvenile delinquency .............................  86 - 90

      H. Leisure-time activities ..........................  91 - 97

      I. Girls and young women ............................  98 - 103

      J. Full and effective participation of youth in the 
         life of society and in decision-making ........... 104 - 107

 V.   MEANS OF IMPLEMENTATION .............................  108 - 143

      A. National level ................................... 112 - 115

      B. Regional cooperation ............................. 116 - 120

      C. International cooperation ........................ 121 - 143


                                   PREAMBLE

1.   The decade since the observance of International Youth Year: 
Participation, Development, Peace has been a period during which the
world experienced fundamental political, economic and socio-cultural
changes.  These changes will inevitably affect at least the first
decade of the twenty-first century as well.

2.   Young people represent agents, beneficiaries and victims of major
societal changes and are generally confronted by a paradox:  to seek
to be integrated into an existing order or to serve as a force to
transform that order.  Young people in all parts of the world, living
in countries at different stages of development and in different
socio-economic settings, aspire to full participation in the life of
society.


                             STATEMENT OF PURPOSE

3.   The World Programme of Action for Youth provides a policy
framework and practical guidelines for national action and
international support to improve the situation of young people.  It
contains proposals for action to the year 2000 and beyond, aiming at
achieving the objectives of the International Youth Year and at
fostering conditions and mechanisms to promote improved well-being and
livelihood among young people.

4.   The Programme of Action focuses in particular on measures to
strengthen national capacities in the field of youth and to increase
the quality and quantity of opportunities available to young people
for full, effective and constructive participation in society.


          I.  UNITED NATIONS DECLARATION OF INTENT ON YOUTH:  PROBLEMS
              AND POTENTIALS

5.   The States Members of the United Nations have agreed to work
towards achievement of the purposes and principles of the Charter of
the United Nations, inter alia, the promotion of higher standards of
living, full employment and conditions of economic and social progress
and development.  Young people in all parts of the world, living in
countries at different stages of development and in different
socio-economic situations, aspire to full participation in the life of
society, as provided in the Charter, including:

     (a) Attainment of an educational level commensurate with their
aspirations;

     (b) Access to employment opportunities equal to their abilities;

     (c) Food and nutrition adequate for full participation in the
life of society;

     (d) A physical and social environment that promotes good health,
offers protection from disease and addiction and is free from all
types of violence;

     (e) Human rights and fundamental freedoms without distinction as
to race, sex, language, religion or any other forms of discrimination;

     (f) Participation in decision-making processes;

     (g) Places and facilities for cultural, recreational and sports
activities to improve the living standards of young people in both
rural and urban areas.

6.   While the peoples of the United Nations, through their
Governments, international organizations and voluntary associations,
have done much to ensure that these aspirations may be achieved,
including efforts to implement the guidelines for further planning and
suitable follow-up in the field of youth endorsed by the General
Assembly in 1985,  2/ it is apparent that the changing world
social, economic and political situation has created the following
conditions that have made this goal more difficult to achieve in many
countries:

     (a) Claims on the physical and financial resources of States,
which have reduced the resources available for youth programmes and
activities, particularly in heavily indebted countries;

     (b) Inequities in social, economic and political conditions,
including racism and xenophobia, which lead to increasing hunger,
deterioration in living conditions and poverty among youth and to
their marginalization as refugees, displaced persons and migrants;

     (c) Increasing difficulty for young people returning from armed
conflict and confrontation in integrating into the community and
gaining access to education and employment;

     (d) Continuing discrimination against young women and
insufficient access for young women to equal opportunities in
employment and education;

     (e) High levels of youth unemployment, including long-term
unemployment;

     (f) Continuing deterioration of the global environment resulting
from unsustainable patterns of consumption and production,
particularly in industrialized countries, which is a matter of grave
concern, aggravating poverty and imbalances;

     (g) Increasing incidence of diseases, such as malaria, the human
immunodeficiency virus and the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome
(HIV/AIDS), and other threats to health, such as substance abuse and
psychotropic substance addiction, smoking and alcoholism;

     (h) Inadequate opportunities for vocational education and
training, especially for persons with disabilities;

     (i) Changes in the role of the family as a vehicle for shared
responsibility and socialization of youth;

     (j) Lack of opportunity for young people to participate in the
life of society and contribute to its development and well-being;

     (k) Prevalence of debilitating disease, hunger and malnutrition
that engulfs the life of many young people;

     (l) Increasing difficulty for young people to receive family life
education as a basis for forming healthy families that foster sharing
of responsibilities.

7.   These phenomena, among others, contribute to the increased
marginalization of young people from the larger society, which is
dependent on youth for its continual renewal.

8.   We, the peoples of the United Nations, believe that the following
principles, aimed at ensuring the well-being of young women and men
and their full and active participation in the society in which they
live, are fundamental to the implementation of the World Programme of
Action for Youth to the Year 2000 and Beyond:

     (a) Every State should provide its young people with
opportunities for obtaining education, for acquiring skills and for
participating fully in all aspects of society, with a view to,
inter alia, acquiring productive employment and leading
self-sufficient lives;

     (b) Every State should guarantee to all young people the full
enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms in accordance with
the Charter of the United Nations and other international instruments
related to human rights;

     (c) Every State should take all necessary measures to eliminate
all forms of discrimination against young women and girls and remove
all obstacles to gender equality and the advancement and empowerment
of women and should ensure full and equal access to education and
employment for girls and young women;

     (d) Every State should foster mutual respect, tolerance and
understanding among young people with different racial, cultural and
religious backgrounds;

     (e) Every State should endeavour to ensure that its policies
relating to young people are informed by accurate data on their
situation and needs, and that the public has access to such data to
enable it to participate in a meaningful fashion in the
decision-making process;

     (f) Every State is encouraged to promote education and action
aimed at fostering among youth a spirit of peace, cooperation and
mutual respect and understanding between nations;

     (g) Every State should meet the special needs of young people in
the areas of responsible family-planning practice, family life, sexual
and reproductive health, sexually transmitted diseases, HIV infection
and AIDS prevention, consistent with the Programme of Action adopted
by the International Conference on Population and Development in
September 1994,  3/ the Copenhagen Declaration on Social
Development and the Programme of Action adopted by the World Summit
for Social Development in March 1995,  4/ and the Beijing
Declaration and the Platform for Action adopted by the Fourth World
Conference on Women in September 1995;  5/

     (h) Environmental protection, promotion and enhancement are among
the issues considered by young people to be of prime importance to the
future welfare of society.  States should therefore actively encourage
young people and youth organizations, to participate actively in
programmes, including educational programmes, and actions designed to
protect, promote and enhance the environment;

     (i) Every State should take measures to develop the possibilities
of education and employment of young people with disabilities;

     (j) Every State should take measures to improve the situation of
young people living in particularly difficult conditions, including by
protecting their rights;

     (k) Every State should promote the goal of full employment as a
basic priority of its economic and social policies, giving special
attention to youth employment.  They should also take measures to
eliminate the economic exploitation of children;

     (l) Every State should provide young people with the health
services necessary to ensure their physical and mental well-being,
including measures to combat diseases such as malaria and HIV/AIDS,
and to protect them from harmful drugs and the effects of addiction to
drugs, tobacco and alcohol;

     (m) Every State should place people at the centre of development
and should direct their economies to meet human needs more effectively
and to ensure that young people are active participants and
beneficiaries in the process of development.


                           II.  DEVELOPMENT SETTING

9.   In 1995, the world youth population - defined by the United
Nations as the age cohort 15-24 - is estimated to be 1.03 billion, or
18 per cent of the total world population.  The majority of the world
youth population (84 per cent in 1995) lives in developing countries. 
This figure is projected to increase to 89 per cent by 2025.  The
difficult circumstances that people experience in many developing
countries are often even more difficult for young people because of
limited opportunities for education and training, viable employment
and health and social services, and because of a growing incidence of
substance abuse and juvenile delinquency.  Many developing countries
are also experiencing unprecedented rates of rural-urban migration by
young people.

10.  Apart from the statistical definition of the term "youth"
mentioned above, the meaning of the term "youth" varies in different
societies around the world.  Definitions of youth have changed
continuously in response to fluctuating political, economic and
socio-cultural circumstances.

11.  Young people in industrialized countries comprise a relatively
smaller proportion of the total population because of generally lower
birth rates and longer life expectancy.  They comprise a social group
that faces particular problems and uncertainties regarding its future,
problems that relate in part to limited opportunities for appropriate
employment.

12.  Young people in all countries are both a major human resource for
development and key agents for social change, economic development and
technological innovation.  Their imagination, ideals, considerable
energies and vision are essential for the continuing development of
the societies in which they live. Thus, there is special need for new
impetus to be given to the design and implementation of youth policies
and programmes at all levels.  The ways in which the challenges and
potentials of young people are addressed by policy will influence
current social and economic conditions and the well-being and
livelihood of future generations.


                     III.  STRATEGIES AND POLICY SPECIFICS

13.  In 1965, in resolution 2037 (XX), the General Assembly endorsed
the Declaration on the Promotion among Youth of the Ideals of Peace,
Mutual Respect and Understanding between Peoples.  From 1965 to 1975,
both the General Assembly and the Economic and Social Council
emphasized three basic themes in the field of youth:  participation,
development and peace.  The need for an international policy on youth
was emphasized as well.  In 1979, the General Assembly, by resolution
34/151, designated 1985 as International Youth Year:  Participation,
Development, Peace.  In 1985, by resolution 40/14, the Assembly
endorsed the guidelines for further planning and suitable follow-up in
the field of youth. 2/ The guidelines are significant for their focus
on young people as a broad category comprising various subgroups,
rather than a single demographic entity.  They provide proposals for
specific measures to address the needs of subgroups such as young
people with disabilities, rural and urban youth and young women.

14.  The themes identified by the General Assembly for International
Youth Year: Participation, Development, Peace - reflect a predominant
concern of the international community with distributive justice,
popular participation and quality of life.  These were reflected in
the guidelines, and they represent overall themes of the World
Programme of Action for Youth to the Year 2000 and Beyond as well.

15.  The Programme of Action also builds upon other, recent
international instruments, including the Rio Declaration on
Environment and Development, adopted by the United Nations Conference
on Environment and Development,  6/ the Vienna Declaration and
Programme of Action adopted by
the World Conference on Human Rights,  7/ the Programme of Action
of the International Conference on Population and Development, 3/ the
Copenhagen Declaration on Social Development and the Programme of
Action of the World Summit for Social Development, 4/ and the Platform
for Action adopted by the Fourth World Conference on Women. 5/

16.  The Programme of Action is drawn from these international
instruments generally and specifically related to youth policies and
programmes.  The Programme of Action is significant because it
provides a cross-sectoral standard relating to both policy-making and
programme design and delivery.  It will serve as a model for
integrated actions, at all levels, to address more effectively
problems experienced by young people in various conditions and to
enhance their participation in society.

17.  The Programme of Action is divided into three phases:  the first
phase focused on analysis and on drafting the Programme of Action and
on its adoption by the General Assembly at its fiftieth session, in
1995; the second phase is concerned with world-wide implementation of
the Programme of Action to the year 2000; the third phase, covering
the period 2001 to 2010, will focus on further implementation and
evaluation of progress made and obstacles encountered; it will suggest
appropriate adjustments to long-term objectives and specific measures
to improve the situation of young people in the societies in which
they live.


                              IV.  PRIORITY AREAS

18.  Each of the ten priority areas identified by the international
community is presented in terms of principal issues, specific
objectives and the actions proposed to be taken by various actors to
achieve those objectives.  Objectives and actions reflect the three
themes of International Youth Year:  Participation, Development,
Peace; they are interlinked and mutually reinforcing.

19.  The ten fields of action identified by the international community
are education, employment, hunger and poverty, health, environment,
drug abuse, juvenile delinquency, leisure-time activities, girls and
young women and the full and effective participation of youth in the
life of society and in decision-making.  The Programme of Action does
not exclude the possibility of new priorities which may be identified
in the future.

20.  Implementation of the Programme of Action requires the full
enjoyment by young people of all human rights and fundamental
freedoms, and also requires that Governments take effective action
against violations of these rights and freedoms and promote
non-discrimination, tolerance, respect for diversity, with full
respect for various religious and ethical values, cultural backgrounds
and philosophical convictions of their young people, equality of
opportunity, solidarity, security and participation of all young women
and men.


                                 A.  Education

21.  Although progress towards universal basic education, beginning
with literacy, has been impressive in recent times, the number of
illiterate people will continue to grow and many developing countries
are likely to fall short of universal primary education by the year
2000.  Three main concerns regarding current systems of education may
be expressed.  The first is the inability of many parents in
developing countries to send their children to schools because of
local economic and social conditions.  The second concerns the paucity
of educational opportunities for girls and young women, migrants,
refugees, displaced persons, street children, indigenous youth
minorities, young people in rural areas and young people with
disabilities.  The third concerns the quality of education, its
relevance to employment and its usefulness in assisting young people
in the transition to full adulthood, active citizenship and productive
and gainful employment.

22.  To encourage the development of educational and training systems
more in line with the current and future needs of young people and
their societies, it would be helpful to share experience and to
investigate alternative arrangements, such as informal arrangements
for the provision of basic literacy, job skills training and lifelong
education.

23.  Opportunities for young people to pursue advanced or university
education, engage in research or be trained for self-employment should
be expanded in developing countries.  Given the economic problems
faced by such countries and the inadequacy of international assistance
in this area, it is difficult to provide appropriate training for all
young people, even though they are a country's chief economic asset.

24.  Governments, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations
are called upon to assist young people from developing countries to
obtain education and training at all levels in developed as well as in
developing countries, as well as to participate in mutual academic
exchanges among developing countries.


Proposals for action

      1.  Improving the level of basic education, skill training and
          literacy among youth

25.  Priority should be given to achieving the goal of ensuring basic
education for all (beginning with literacy), mobilizing for that
purpose all channels, agents and forms of education and training, in
line with the concept of lifelong education.  Special emphasis should
also be given to the reform of education content and curricula,
especially curricula that reinforce traditional female roles which
deny women opportunities for full and equal partnership in society, at
all levels, focusing on scientific literacy, moral values and learning
of skills, adapted to the changing environment and to life in
multi-ethnic and multi-cultural societies.  The importance of the
development of information skills, that is skills for researching,
accessing and using information, and informatics should be emphasized
along with the importance of distance education. Non-governmental
youth organizations and educational organizations should develop
youth-to-youth programmes for basic education, skills training and
literacy.  Consideration should be given to developing programmes
enabling retired and elderly people to teach literacy to young people. 
Particular attention should be given to specific groups of youth in
distressed circumstances, including indigenous, migrant and refugee
youth, displaced persons, street children and poor youth in urban and
rural areas, as well as to special problems, including literacy
problems, for blind youth and youth with other disabilities.


          2.  Cultural heritage and contemporary patterns of society

26.  Governments should establish or strengthen programmes to educate
young people in the cultural heritage of their own and other societies
and the world.  Governments should institute, in cooperation with
non-governmental youth organizations, travel and exchange programmes
and youth camps to help youth understand cultural diversity at both
the national and international levels, develop intercultural learning
skills and participate in the preservation of the cultural heritage of
their own and other societies and the world around them.  The United
Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, in
cooperation with interested Governments and non-governmental
organizations, is requested to expand international programmes, such
as youth camps, by which young people, particularly those from
developing countries, with different cultures, may help restore major
international cultural sites and engage in other cultural activities.


         3.  Promoting mutual respect and understanding and the ideals
             of peace, solidarity and tolerance among youth

27.  Programmes aimed at learning peacemaking and conflict resolution
should be encouraged and designed by Governments and educational
institutions for introduction to schools at all levels.  Children and
youth should be informed of cultural differences in their own
societies and given opportunities to learn about different cultures as
well as tolerance and mutual respect for cultural and religious
diversity.  Governments and educational institutions should formulate
and implement educational programmes which promote and strengthen
respect for all human rights and fundamental freedoms and enhance the
values of peace, solidarity, tolerance, responsibility and respect for
the diversity and rights of others.


                   4.  Vocational and professional training

28.  Governments and educational institutions, in cooperation with
regional and international organizations, could establish or enhance
vocational and technical training relevant to current and prospective
employment conditions.  Youth must be given the opportunity to access
vocational and professional training and apprenticeship programmes
that help them acquire entry-level jobs with growth opportunities and
the ability to adjust to changes in labour demand.


                     5.  Promoting human rights education

29.  Governments should ensure that the United Nations Decade for Human
Rights Education, which began in 1995, is adequately observed in
schools and educational institutions.  In order to make youth aware of
their civil, cultural, economic, political and social rights, as well
their societal responsibilities, and in order to develop harmonious
inter-community relations, mutual tolerance and respect, equality
between women and men, and tolerance for diversity, Governments should
develop human rights education strategies targeted at youth, taking
particular account of the human rights of women.


                    6.  Training for enterprise programmes

30.  Governments, in cooperation with regional and international
organizations, should formulate model training programmes for youth in
individual and cooperative enterprises.  They are encouraged to
establish self-contained enterprise centres where young people may
plan and test their enterprise venture concepts.


        7.  Infrastructure for training youth workers and youth leaders

31.  Governments should assess the adequacy of facilities and
programmes to train youth workers and youth leaders, including the
adequacy of curricula and staff resources.  On the basis of such
assessments, Governments should plan and implement relevant training
programmes.  Non-governmental youth organizations should be encouraged
and assisted in formulating and disseminating model training courses
for use by member organizations.

32.  Interested organizations should investigate possibilities of
strengthening international youth worker and youth leadership
training, with priority given to accepting participants from
developing countries.  In cooperation with concerned organizations
that provide training opportunities for youth, including internships
and volunteer programmes, establishment of an inventory of such
programmes could also be explored.


                                B.  Employment

33.  Unemployment and underemployment among youth is a problem
everywhere.  It is, indeed, part of the larger struggle to create
employment opportunities for all citizens.  The problem has worsened
in recent years because of the global recession which has affected
developing countries the most seriously.  The disturbing fact is that
economic growth is not always accompanied by growth in employment. 
The difficulty of finding suitable employment is compounded by a host
of other problems confronting young people, including illiteracy and
insufficient training, and is worsened by periods of world economic
slow-down and by overall changing economic trends.  In some countries,
the influx of young people into the employment market has brought with
it acute problems.  According to estimates of the International Labour
Organization, more than one hundred million new jobs would have to be
created within the next twenty years in order to provide suitable
employment for the growing number of young people in the economically
active populations of developing countries.  The situation of girls
and young women, as well as of young people with disabilities, refugee
youth, displaced persons, street children, indigenous youth, migrant
youth and minorities warrants urgent attention, bearing in mind the
prohibition of forced labour and child labour.

34.  The crisis of youth unemployment deprives young people of the
opportunity to secure independent housing or the accommodations
necessary for the establishment of families and participation in the
life of society. Advances in technology and communications, coupled
with improved productivity, have imposed new challenges as well as new
opportunities for employment. Young people are among the most severely
affected by these developments. If effective solutions are not found,
the cost to society will be much higher in the long run. Unemployment
creates a wide range of social ills and young people are particularly
susceptible to its damaging effects: the lack of skills, low
self-esteem, marginalization, impoverishment and the wasting of an
enormous human resource.


Proposals for action

               1.  Opportunities for self-employment

35.  Governments and organizations should create or promote grant
schemes to provide seed money to encourage and support enterprise and
employment programmes for young people.  Businesses and enterprises
could be encouraged to provide counterpart financial and technical
support for such schemes.  Cooperative schemes involving young people
in production and marketing of goods and services could be considered. 
The formation of youth development banks could be considered.  The
Committee for the Promotion and Advancement of Cooperatives is
encouraged to develop models for cooperatives run by youth in
developed and developing countries.  Such models could include
guidelines for management training and training in entrepreneurial
techniques and marketing.


       2.  Employment opportunities for specific groups of young people

36.  Within funds designated to promote youth employment, Governments
should, as appropriate, designate resources for programmes supporting
the efforts of young women, young people with disabilities, youth
returning from military service, migrant youth, refugee youth,
displaced persons, street children and indigenous youth.  Youth
organizations and young people themselves should be directly involved
in the planning and implementation of these programmes.


               3.  Voluntary community services involving youth

37.  Where they do not already exist, Governments should consider the
establishment of voluntary service programmes for youth.  Such
programmes could provide alternatives to military service, or might
constitute a required element in educational curricula, depending on
national policies and priorities.  Youth camps, community service
projects, environmental protection and inter-generational cooperation
programmes should be included among the opportunities offered.  Youth
organizations should be directly involved in designing, planning,
implementing and evaluating such voluntary service programmes.  In
addition, international cooperation programmes organized between youth
organizations in developed and developing countries should be included
to promote intercultural understanding and development training.


                  4.  Needs created by technological changes

38.  Governments, in particular those of developed countries, should
encourage the creation of employment opportunities for young people in
fields that are rapidly evolving as a result of technological
innovation.  A subset of the employment data compiled by Governments
should track the employment of youth into those fields marked by newly
emerging technologies.  Measures should be taken to provide ongoing
training for youth in this area.

39.  Special attention should be paid to developing and disseminating
approaches that promote flexibility in training systems and
collaboration between training institutions and employers, especially
for young people in high-technology industries.


                            C.  Hunger and poverty

40.  Over one billion people in the world today live in unacceptable
conditions of poverty, mostly in developing countries, particularly in
rural areas of low-income countries in Asia and the Pacific, Africa,
Latin America and the Caribbean and the least developed countries. 
Poverty has various manifestations; hunger and malnutrition; ill
health; limited or lack of access to education and other basic
services; increased morbidity and mortality from illness; homelessness
and inadequate housing; unsafe environments; and social discrimination
and exclusion; it is also characterized by a lack of participation in
decision-making and in civil and socio-cultural life. Poverty is
inseparably linked to lack of access to or loss of control over
resources, including land, skills, knowledge, capital and social
connections.  Without those resources, people have limited access to
institutions, markets, employment and public services.  Young people
are particularly affected by this situation.  Therefore, specific
measures are needed to address the juvenilization and feminization of
poverty.

41.  Hunger and malnutrition remain among the most serious and
intractable threats to humanity, often preventing youth and children
from taking part in society.  Hunger is the result of many factors: 
mismanagement of food production and distribution; poor accessibility;
maldistribution of financial resources; unwise exploitation of natural
resources; unsustainable patterns of consumption; environmental
pollution; natural and human-made disasters; conflicts between
traditional and contemporary production systems; irrational population
growth; and armed conflicts.


Proposals for action

          1.  Making farming more rewarding and life in agricultural
              areas more attractive                                 

42.  Governments should enhance educational and cultural services and
other incentives in rural areas to make them more attractive to young
people.  Experimental farming programmes directed towards young people
should be initiated and extension services expanded to maintain
improvements in agricultural production and marketing.

43.  Local and national Governments, in cooperation with youth
organizations, should organize cultural events that enhance exchanges
between urban and rural youth.  Youth organizations should be
encouraged and assisted in organizing conventions and meetings in
rural areas, with special efforts to enlist the cooperation of rural
populations, including rural youth.


           2.  Skill-training for income-generation by young people

44.  Governments, in cooperation with youth organizations, should
develop training programmes for youth which improve methods of
agricultural production and marketing.  Training should be based on
rural economic needs and the need to train young people in rural areas
in techniques of food production and the achievement of food security. 
Attention should be given in such programmes to young women, youth
retention in rural areas, youth returning to rural areas from the
cities, young people with disabilities, refugee and migrant youth,
displaced persons and street children, indigenous youth, youth
returning from military service and youth living in areas of resolved
conflicts.


                       3.  Land grants for young people

45.  Governments should provide grants of land to youth and youth
organizations, supported by financial and technical assistance and
training.  The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
and the International Labour Organization are invited to document and
disseminate information about national experience with land-grant and
settlement schemes for use by Governments.

46.  Governments, consistent with their rural development schemes and
with the assistance of international organizations, as appropriate,
are encouraged to work with volunteer youth organizations on projects
which enhance and maintain the rural and urban environments.


               4.  Cooperation between urban and rural youth in
                   food production and distribution            

47.  Non-governmental organizations should organize direct-marketing
groups, including production and distribution cooperatives, to improve
current marketing systems and to ensure that young farmers have access
to them.  The aim of such groups should be to reduce food shortages
and losses from defective systems of food storage and transport to
markets.


                                  D.  Health

48.  Young people in some parts of the world suffer from poor health as
a result of societal conditions, including such factors as customary
attitudes and harmful traditional practices and, in some cases, as a
result of their own actions.  Poor health is often caused by an
unhealthy environment, by missing support systems in everyday life for
health promoting patterns of behaviour, by lack of information and by
inadequate or inappropriate health services.  Problems include the
lack of a safe and sanitary living environment, malnutrition, the risk
of infectious, parasitic and water-borne diseases, the growing
consumption of tobacco, alcohol and drugs, unwarranted risk-taking and
destructive activity, resulting in unintentional injuries.

49.  The reproductive health needs of adolescents have been largely
ignored.  In many countries, there is a lack of information and
services available to adolescents to help them understand their
sexuality, including sexual and reproductive health, and to protect
them from unwanted pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases,
including HIV/AIDS.


Proposals for action

                    1.  Provision of basic health services

50.  All young people should have access to basic health services in
the interest of all and of society as a whole.  It is the
indispensable responsibility of each Government to mobilize the
necessary awareness, resources and channels.  These measures should be
supported by a favourable international economic environment and by
cooperation.

51.  Efforts should be expedited to achieve the goals of national
health-for-all strategies, based on equality and social justice, in
line with the Declaration of Alma Ata on primary health care  8/
adopted on 12 September 1978 by the International Conference on
Primary Health Care, by developing or updating country action plans or
programmes to ensure universal, non-discriminatory access to basic
health services, including sanitation and drinking water, to protect
health, and to promote nutrition education and preventive health
programmes.

52.  Support should be provided for stronger, better coordinated global
actions against major diseases which take a heavy toll of human lives,
such as malaria, tuberculosis, cholera, typhoid fever and HIV/AIDS; in
this context, support should be continued for the Joint and
Co-sponsored United Nations Programme on the human immunodeficiency
virus/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS).

53.    Poor health is often caused by lack of information and lack of
health services for youth, mostly in developing countries.  The
resulting problems are, among others, sexually transmitted diseases,
including infection with HIV; early pregnancies; lack of hygiene and
sanitation, leading to infection, infestation and diarrhoea; genetic
and congenital diseases; psychological and mental diseases; narcotic
and psychotropic drug abuse; misuse of alcohol and tobacco;
unwarranted risk-taking and destructive activity, resulting in
unintentional injuries; malnutrition; and poor spacing of births.


                      2.  Development of health education

54.  Governments should include, in the curricula of educational
institutions at the primary and secondary levels, programmes focusing
on primary health knowledge and practices.  Particular emphasis should
be placed on the understanding of basic hygiene requirements and the
need to develop and sustain a healthy environment.  These programmes
need to be developed in full awareness of the needs and priorities of
young people and with their involvement.

55.  Cooperation among Governments and educational and health
institutions should be encouraged in order to promote personal
responsibility for a healthy lifestyle and provide the knowledge and
skills necessary to adopt a healthy lifestyle, including teaching the
legal, social and health consequences of behaviour that poses health
risks.


            3.  Promotion of health services, including sexual and
                reproductive health and development of relevant   
                education programmes in those fields              

56.  Governments, with the involvement of youth and other relevant
organizations, should ensure the implementation of the commitments
made in the Programme of Action of the International Conference on
Population and Development, 3/ as established in the report of that
Conference, in the Copenhagen Declaration on Social Development and
the Programme of Action of the World Summit on Social Development, 4/
and in the Beijing Declaration and the Platform for Action for the
Fourth World Conference on Women, 5/ as well as in the relevant human
rights instruments, to meet the health needs of youth.  The United
Nations Population Fund and other interested United Nations
organizations should continue to take effective steps on these issues. 
The reproductive health needs of adolescents as a group have been
largely ignored to date by existing reproductive health services.  The
response of societies to the reproductive health needs of adolescents
should be based on information that helps them attain a level of
maturity required to make responsible decisions.  In particular,
information and services should be made available to adolescents to
help them understand their sexuality and protect them from unwanted
pregnancies, sexually transmitted diseases and the subsequent risk of
infertility.  This should be combined with the education of young men
to respect women's self-determination and to share responsibility with
women in matters of sexuality and reproduction.  This effort is
uniquely important for the health of young women and their children,
for women's self-determination and, in many countries, for efforts to
slow the momentum of population growth. Motherhood at a very young age
entails a risk of maternal death that is much greater than average,
and the children of young mothers have higher levels of morbidity and
mortality.  Early child-bearing continues to be an impediment to
improvements in the educational, economic and social status of women
in all parts of the world.  Overall for young women, early marriage
and early motherhood can severely curtail educational and employment
opportunities and are likely to have a long-term adverse impact on the
quality of life of young women and their children.

57.  Governments should develop comprehensive sexual and reproductive
health- care services and provide young people with access to those
services including, inter alia, education and services in family
planning consistent with the results of the International Conference
on Population and Development, the World Summit for Social Development
and the Fourth World Conference on Women.  The United Nations
Population Fund and other interested United Nations organizations are
to be encouraged to continue assigning high priority to promoting
adolescent reproductive health.


                 4.  HIV infection and AIDS among young people

58.  Governments should develop accessible, available and affordable
primary health care services of high quality, including sexual and
reproductive health care, as well as education programmes, including
those related to sexually transmitted disease, including HIV/AIDS, for
youth.  Continued international cooperation and collective global
efforts are necessary for the containment of HIV/AIDS.


            5.  Promotion of good sanitation and hygiene practices

59.  Governments, in cooperation with youth and volunteer
organizations, should promote the establishment of youth health
associations to promote good sanitation and hygiene programmes.


             6.  Prevention of disease and illness among youth
                 resulting from poor health practices         

60.  Governments, in cooperation with youth organizations, should
promote healthier lifestyles and, in this context, should investigate
the possibility of adopting policies for discouraging drug, tobacco
and alcohol abuse, including possibly banning the advertisement of
tobacco and alcohol.  They should also undertake programmes to inform
young people about the adverse effects of drug and alcohol abuse and
tobacco addiction.

61.  Programmes should be instituted, with the appropriate assistance
of the United Nations bodies and organizations concerned, to train
medical, paramedical, educational and youth work personnel in health
issues of particular concern to young people, including healthy
lifestyles.  Research into such issues should be promoted,
particularly research into the effects and treatment of drug abuse and
addiction.  Youth organizations should be enlisted in these efforts.


                7.  Elimination of sexual abuse of young people

62.  As recommended by the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action,7/ 
the International Conference on Population and Development, 3/ the
World Summit for Social Development 4/ and the Fourth World Conference
on Women, 5/ and bearing in mind that young women are specially
vulnerable, Governments should cooperate at the international level
and take effective steps, including specific preventive measures to
protect children, adolescents and youth from neglect, abandonment and
all types of exploitation and abuse, such as abduction, rape and
incest, pornography, trafficking and acts of paedophilia, as well as
from commercial sexual exploitation resulting from pornography and
prostitution.  9/ Governments should enact and enforce legislation
prohibiting female genital mutilation wherever it exists and give
vigorous support to efforts among non-governmental and community
organizations and religious institutions to eliminate such
practices.  10/


                 8.  Combating malnutrition among young people

63.  Governments should promote post-primary-school and out-of-school
health projects by individuals and youth organizations, emphasizing
information on healthy eating practices.  School lunch programmes,
provision of food supplements and similar services should be available
whenever possible to help ensure a proper diet for young people.


                                E.  Environment

64.  The deterioration of the natural environment is one of the
principal concerns of young people world wide as it has direct
implications for their well-being both now and in the future.  The
natural environment must be maintained and preserved for both present
and future generations.  The causes of environmental degradation must
be addressed.  The environmentally friendly use of natural resources
and environmentally sustainable economic growth will improve human
life.  Sustainable development has become a key element in the
programmes of youth organizations throughout the world.  While every
segment of society is responsible for maintaining the environmental
integrity of the community, young people have a special interest in
maintaining a healthy environment because they will be the ones to
inherit it.


Proposals for action

         1.  Integration of environmental education and training into
             education and training programmes                       

65.  Emphasis should be given in school curricula to environmental
education.  Training programmes should be provided to inform teachers
of the environmental aspects of their subject-matter and to enable
them to educate youth concerning environmentally friendly habits.

66.  The participation of youth groups in gathering environmental data
and in understanding ecological systems and actual environmental
action should be encouraged as a means of improving both their
knowledge of the environment and their personal engagement in caring
for the environment.


        2.  Facilitating the international dissemination of information
            on environmental issues to, and the use of environmentally 
            sound technologies by, youth                              

67.  The United Nations Environment Programme, in cooperation with
Governments and non-governmental youth organizations, is invited to
intensify production of information materials illustrating the global
dimension, its origins and the interrelated effects of environmental
degradation, describing the outcome of initiatives undertaken in
developing and developed countries as well as countries with economies
in transition.  The United Nations Environment Programme is requested
to continue its efforts to disseminate information to and exchange
information with youth organizations.  Governments should encourage
and assist youth organizations to initiate and develop youth-to-youth
contacts through town-twinning and similar programmes in order to
share the experience gained in different countries.

68.  Relevant United Nations organizations and institutions and
Governments of technologically advanced countries are encouraged to
help spread the use of environmentally sound technologies in
developing countries and in countries with economies in transition and
to train youth in making use of such technologies in protecting and
conserving the environment.


          3.  Strengthening participation of youth in the protection,
              preservation and improvement of the environment        

69.  Governments and youth organizations should initiate programmes to
promote participation in tree planting, forestry, combating desert
creep, waste reduction, recycling and other sound environmental
practices.  The participation of young people and their organizations
in such programmes can provide good training and encourage awareness
and action.  Waste management programmes may represent potential
income-generating activities which provide opportunities for
employment.

70.  As recognized by the United Nations Conference on Environment and
Development, the involvement of youth in environment and development
decision- making is critical to the implementation of policies of
sustainable development.  Young people should be involved in designing
and implementing appropriate environmental policies.


               4.  Enhancing the role of the media as a tool for
                   widespread dissemination of environmental    
                   issues to youth                             

71.  Governments should, to the extent consistent with freedom of
expression, encourage the media and advertising agencies to develop
programmes to ensure widespread dissemination of information on
environmental issues in order to continue to raise awareness thereof
among youth.

72.  Governments should establish procedures allowing for consultation
and possible participation of youth of both genders in decision-making
processes with regard to the environment, at the local, national and
regional levels.


                                F.  Drug abuse

73.  The vulnerability of young people to drug abuse has in recent
years become a major concern.  The consequences of widespread drug
abuse and trafficking, particularly for young men and women, are all
too apparent.  Violence, particularly street violence, often results
from drug abuse and illicit drug networks.

74.  As the number of psychotropic drugs increases steadily and their
effects and appropriate prescriptive uses are often not fully known,
some patients may not be adequately treated and others may become
over-medicated.  Abuse of prescription drugs, self-medication with
tranquillizers, sleeping-pills and stimulants can also create serious
problems, particularly in countries and regions where distribution
controls are weak and habit-forming drugs are purchased abroad or
diverted from licit channels of distribution.  In this context, the
vulnerability of young people raises a particular problem and specific
measures are therefore needed.

75.  The international community places particular emphasis on reducing
the demand for and supply of illegal drugs and preventing abuse. 
Supply reduction includes combating international illicit drug
trafficking.  Drug abuse prevention initiatives range from
discouraging people from taking drugs, thus preventing involuntary
addiction, to helping those who are abusing drugs to stop doing so. 
Treatment programmes need to recognize that drug abuse is a chronic
relapsing condition.  It is essential for programmes to be adapted to
the social and cultural context and for there to be effective
cooperation between various approaches to treatment.  To this end,
national initiatives and measures to combat illicit drug trafficking
should be fully supported and reinforced at the regional and
international levels.

76.  Drug control strategies at the national and international levels
consistently emphasize initiatives aimed at reducing drug abuse among
young people.  This is reflected in the resolutions of the Commission
on Narcotic Drugs and in the demand reduction programmes of the United
Nations International Drug Control Programme.


Proposals for action

         1.  Participation of youth organizations and youth in demand
             reduction programmes for young people                   

77.  To be effective, demand reduction programmes should be targeted at
all young people, particularly those at risk, and the content of the
programmes should respond directly to the interests and concerns of
those young people.  Preventive education programmes showing the
dangers of drug abuse are particularly important.  Increasing
opportunities for gainful employment and activities which provide
recreation and opportunities to develop a variety of skills are
important in helping young people to resist drugs.  Youth
organizations can play a key role in designing and implementing
education programmes and individual counselling to encourage the
integration of youth into the community, to develop healthy lifestyles
and to raise awareness of the damaging impact of drugs.  The
programmes could include training of youth leaders in communication
and counselling skills.

78.  Government entities, in cooperation with relevant agencies of the
United Nations system, non-governmental organizations, particularly
youth organizations, should cooperate in carrying out demand reduction
programmes for illicit drugs, tobacco and alcohol.


         2.  Training medical and paramedical students in the rational
             use of pharmaceuticals containing narcotic drugs or      
             psychotropic substances                                  

79.  The World Health Organization, associations of the medical,
paramedical and pharmaceutical professions and pharmaceutical
corporations and medical faculties and institutions could be asked to
develop model training courses and disseminate information material
for young medical and paramedical students on the proper handling of
drugs and the early identification and diagnosis of substance abuse.


         3.  Treatment and rehabilitation of young people who are drug
             abusers or drug-dependent and young alcoholics and       
             tobacco users                                            

80.  Research has been undertaken into the possibility of identifying
medication to block cravings for specific drugs without creating
secondary dependency, but much remains to be done in this area.  The
need for medical and social research in the prevention and treatment
of substance abuse as well as rehabilitation, has become more urgent,
particularly with the world-wide increase in abuse and addiction among
young people.  In such research, emphasis should be given to the fact
that intravenous substance abuse raises the risk of contracting
communicable diseases, including HIV/AIDS and hepatitis, arising from
the sharing of needles and other injection equipment.  The fruits of
all such research should be shared globally.

81.  Research on issues such as the medical treatment and the
rehabilitation of young drug abusers, including the combination of
different types of treatment, the problem of recidivism and the
administrative aspects of drug treatment, and the inclusion of
students in the relevant faculties in such research, should be
encouraged.

82.  In cooperation with the institutions of civil society and the
private sector, drug abuse prevention should be promoted, as should
preventive education for children and youth and rehabilitation and
education programmes for former drug and alcohol addicts, especially
children and youth, in order to enable them to obtain productive
employment and achieve the independence, dignity and responsibility
for a drug-free, crime-free productive life.  Of particular interest
is the development of treatment techniques involving the family
setting and peer groups.  Young people can make significant
contributions by participating in peer group therapy to facilitate the
acceptance of young drug-dependent persons and abusers upon their
re-entry into society.  Direct participation in rehabilitation therapy
entails close cooperation between youth groups and other community and
health services.  The World Health Organization and other world-wide
medical and mental health organizations could be requested to set
guidelines for continuing research and for carrying out comparable
programmes in different settings, whose effectiveness could be
evaluated over a given period of time.


          4.  Care for young drug abusers and drug-dependent suspects
              and offenders in the criminal justice and prison system

83.  Authorities should consider strategies to prevent exposure to drug
abuse and dependence among young people suspected or convicted of
criminal offences.  Such strategies could include alternative
measures, such as daily reporting to police stations, regular visits
to parole officers or the fulfilment of a specified number of hours of
community service.

84.  Prison authorities should cooperate closely with law enforcement
agencies to keep drugs out of the prison system.  Prison personnel
should be discouraged from tolerating the presence of drugs in penal
institutions.

85.  Young prisoners who are already drug-dependent should be targeted
as priority candidates for treatment and rehabilitation services and
should be segregated as appropriate.  Guidelines and standard minimum
rules should be prepared to assist national authorities in law
enforcement and prison systems in maintaining the necessary controls
and initiating treatment and rehabilitation services.  Action along
these lines constitutes a long-term advantage to society, as the cycle
of dependence, release, repeated offences and repeated incarcerations
constitutes a heavy burden on the criminal justice system, quite apart
from the wasted lives and personal tragedies which result from drug
dependence and criminal behaviour.


                           G.  Juvenile delinquency

86.  Juvenile crime and delinquency are serious problems all over the
world.  Their intensity and gravity depend mostly on the social,
economic and cultural conditions in each country.  There is evidence,
however, of an apparent world-wide increase in juvenile criminality
combined with economic recession, especially in marginal sectors of
urban centres.  In many cases, youth offenders are "street children"
who have been exposed to violence in their immediate social
environment, either as observers or as victims.  Their basic
education, when they have it, is poor; their primary socialization
from the family is too often inadequate; and their socio-economic
environment is shaped by poverty and destitution.  Rather than relying
solely on the criminal justice system, approaches to the prevention of
violence and crime should thus include measures to support equality
and justice, to combat poverty and to reduce hopelessness among young
people.


Proposals for action

                      1.  Priority to preventive measures

87.  Governments should give priority to issues and problems of
juvenile delinquency and youth criminality, with particular attention
to preventive policies and programmes.  Rural areas should be provided
with adequate socio-economic opportunities and administrative services
which could discourage young people from migrating to urban areas. 
Youth from poor urban settings should have access to specific
educational, employment and leisure programmes, particularly during
long school holidays.  Young people who drop out of school or come
from broken families should benefit from specific social programmes
that help them build self-esteem and confidence conducive to
responsible adulthood.


                          2.  Prevention of violence

88.  Governments and other relevant organizations, particularly youth
organizations, should consider organizing information campaigns and
educational and training programmes in order to sensitize youth to the
personally and socially detrimental effects of violence in the family,
community and society, to teach them how to communicate without
violence and to promote training so that they can protect themselves
and others against violence.  Governments should also develop
programmes to promote tolerance and better understanding among youth,
with a view to eradicating contemporary forms of racism, racial
discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance and thereby prevent
violence.

89.  To prevent violence and crime, the development of social
organization, particularly through youth organizations and community
involvement, should be fostered by a supportive social policy and
within a legal framework.  Government assistance should focus on
facilitating the ability of community and youth organizations to
express and evaluate their needs concerning the prevention of violence
and crime, to formulate and implement actions for themselves and to
cooperate with each other.


               3.  Rehabilitation services and programmes

90.  Destitution, poor living conditions, inadequate education,
malnutrition, illiteracy, unemployment and lack of leisure-time
activities are factors that marginalize young people, which makes some
of them vulnerable to exploitation as well as to involvement in
criminal and other deviant behaviour.  If preventive measures address
the very causes of criminality, rehabilitation programmes and services
should be made available to those who already have a criminal history. 
In general, youth delinquency begins with petty offences such as
robbery or violent behaviour, which can be easily traced by and
corrected through institutions and community and family environments. 
Indeed law enforcement should be a part of rehabilitation measures. 
Finally, the human rights of young people who are imprisoned should be
protected and principles of penal majority according to penal laws
should be given great attention.


                          H.  Leisure-time activities

91.  The importance of leisure-time activities in the psychological,
cognitive and physical development of young people is recognized in
all societies.  Leisure-time activities include games, sports,
cultural events, entertainment and community service.  Appropriate
leisure programmes for youth are elements of any measure aimed at
fighting social ills such as drug abuse, juvenile delinquency and
other deviant behaviour.  While leisure programmes can contribute
greatly to the development of the physical, intellectual and emotional
potential of young people, they should be designed with due care and
concern so that they are not used as a means for excluding youth from
participating in other aspects of social life or for indoctrinating
them.  Leisure-time activity programmes should be made freely
available to young people.


Proposals for action

              1.  Leisure-time activities as an integral part of
                  youth policies and programmes                 

92.  Governments, in planning, designing and implementing youth
policies and programmes, with the active involvement of youth
organizations, should recognize the importance of leisure-time
activities. The importance given to such activities should be
reflected in appropriate funding.

93.  Governments are invited to establish public libraries, cultural
centres and other cultural facilities in rural and urban areas, with
the aid of international organizations, and to provide assistance to
young people active in the fields of drama, the fine arts, music and
other forms of cultural expression.

94.  Governments are invited to encourage the participation of young
people in tourism, international cultural events, sports and all other
activities of special interest to youth.


     2.  Leisure-time activities as elements of educational programmes         
                                   
95.  Governments, by providing adequate funding to educational
institutions for the establishment of leisure-time activities, may
accord priority to such activities. In addition, leisure-time
activities could be integrated into the regular school curriculum.


    3.  Leisure-time activities in urban planning and rural development

96.  National Governments as well as local authorities and community
development agencies should incorporate leisure-time activity
programmes and facilities in urban planning, giving particular
attention to areas with a high population density.  Equally, rural
development programmes should pay due attention to the leisure needs
of rural youth.


              4.  Leisure-time activities and the media

97.  The media should be encouraged to promote youth understanding and
awareness of all aspects of social integration, including tolerance
and non-violent behaviour.


                    I.  Girls and young women

98.  One of the most important tasks of youth policy is to improve the
situation of girls and young women.  Governments therefore should
implement their obligations under international human rights
instruments as well as implementing the Platform for Action of the
Fourth World Conference on Women, 5/ the Programme of Action of the
International Conference on Population and Development, 3/ the Vienna
Declaration and Programme of Action of the World Conference on Human
Rights 7/ and other programmes of relevant United Nations conferences. 
Girls are often treated as inferior and are socialized to put
themselves last, thus undermining their self-esteem.  Discrimination
and neglect in childhood can initiate a lifelong downward spiral of
deprivation and exclusion from the social mainstream.  Negative
cultural attitudes and practices as well as gender-biased educational
processes including curricula, educational materials and practices,
teachers' attitudes and classroom interaction, reinforce existing
gender inequalities.


Proposals for action

                         1.  Discrimination

99.  Discrimination and neglect in childhood can initiate a lifelong
exclusion from society.  Action should be taken to eliminate
discrimination against girls and young women and to ensure their full
enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms through
comprehensive policies, plans of action and programmes on the basis of
equality.  Initiatives should be taken to prepare girls to participate
actively, effectively and equally with boys at all levels of social,
economic, political and cultural leadership.


                           2.  Education

100.     Universal and equal access to and completion of primary
education for girls and young women as well as equal access to
secondary and higher education should be ensured.  A framework should
be provided for the development of educational materials and practices
that are gender balanced and promote an educational setting that
eliminates all barriers impeding the schooling of girls and young
women, including married and/or pregnant girls and young women.


                             3.  Health

101.     Discrimination against girls and young women should be
eliminated in health and nutrition.  The removal of discriminatory
laws and practices against girls and young women in food allocation
and nutrition should be promoted, and their access to health services
should be ensured in accordance with the Programme of Action of the
International Conference on Population and Development and the
Platform for Action of the Fourth World Conference on Women.


                           4.  Employment

102.     Girls and young women should be protected from economic and
related forms of exploitation and from performing any work that is
likely to be hazardous, to interfere with their education or to be
harmful to their health or their physical, mental, spiritual, moral or
social development, in conformity with the Convention of the Rights of
the Child  11/ and the Convention on the Elimination of All
Forms of Discrimination against Women.  12/  Equal access for
young women to all employment opportunities should be promoted and
their participation in the traditionally male-dominated sectors should
be encouraged.


                                 5.  Violence

103.     Governments should cooperate at the international level and
enact and enforce legislation protecting girls and young women from
all forms of violence, including female infanticide and prenatal sex
selection, genital mutilation, incest, sexual abuse, sexual
exploitation, child prostitution and child pornography.  Age
appropriate, safe and confidential programmes and support services to
assist girls and young women who are subjected to violence should be
developed in cooperation with relevant non-governmental organizations,
particularly youth organizations, as appropriate.


     J.  Full and effective participation of youth in the life of
         society and in decision-making

104.     The capacity for progress of our societies is based, among
other elements, on their capacity to incorporate the contribution and
responsibility of youth in the building and designing of the future. 
In addition to their intellectual contribution and their ability to
mobilize support, they bring unique perspectives that need to be taken
into account.

105.     Any efforts and proposed actions in the other priority areas
considered in this programme are, in a certain way, conditioned by
enabling the economic, social and political participation of youth, as
a matter of critical importance.

106. Youth organizations are important forums for developing skills
necessary for effective participation in society, promoting tolerance
and increased cooperation and exchanges between youth organizations.


Proposals for action

107. The following actions are proposed:

     (a)  Improving access to information in order to enable young
people to make better use of their opportunities to participate in
decision-making;

     (b) Developing and/or strengthening opportunities for young
people to learn their rights and responsibilities, promoting their
social, political, developmental and environmental participation,
removing obstacles that affect their full contribution to society and
respecting, inter alia, freedom of association;

     (c) Encouraging and promoting youth associations through
financial, educational and technical support and promotion of their
activities;

     (d) Taking into account the contribution of youth in designing,
implementing and evaluating national policies and plans affecting
their concerns;

     (e) Encouraging increased national, regional and international
cooperation and exchange between youth organizations;

     (f) Inviting Governments to strengthen the involvement of young
people in international forums, inter alia, by considering the
inclusion of youth representatives in their national delegations to
the General Assembly.


                   V.  MEANS OF IMPLEMENTATION

108.     Effective implementation of the World Programme of Action for
Youth to the Year 2000 and Beyond will require a significant
expression of commitment by organizations and institutions responsible
for its adoption and implementation and the involvement of such
organizations and especially of youth from all sectors of society. 
Without such commitment by governmental, intergovernmental and
non-governmental entities at the national, regional and international
levels, the Programme of Action will remain little more than a global
statement of intent and general standard for action.

109.     Therefore the development of an overall system of enabling
mechanisms is necessary in order for the Programme of Action to be
implemented.  Such mechanisms should engage, on a continuing basis,
the human, political, economic, financial and socio-cultural resources
necessary to ensure that the Programme is implemented efficiently and
effectively.

110.     Implementation of the Programme of Action is ultimately the
responsibility of Governments with the support of the international
community and in cooperation, as appropriate, with the
non-governmental and private sectors.  Translation of the Programme's
proposals for action into specific plans, targets and law will be
influenced by national priorities, resources and historical
experience.  In this process, Governments can be assisted, at their
request, by regional and international organizations.

111.     In implementing the Programme of Action, Governments, youth
organizations and other actors should promote an active and visible
policy of mainstreaming a gender perspective in all policies and
programmes in accordance with the results of the International
Conference on Population and Development, the World Summit on Social
Development and the Fourth World Conference on Women.


                        A.  National level

112.     Governments which have not already done so are urged to
formulate and adopt an integrated national youth policy as a means of
addressing youth-related concerns.  This should be done as part of a
continuing process of review and assessment of the situation of youth,
formulation of a cross-sectoral national youth programme of action in
terms of specific, time-bound objectives and a systematic evaluation
of progress achieved and obstacles encountered.

113.     Reinforcing youth-related concerns in development activities
can be facilitated through the existence of multilevel mechanisms for
consultation, dissemination of information, coordination, monitoring
and evaluation.  These should be cross-sectoral in nature and
multidisciplinary in approach and should include the participation of
youth-related departments and ministries, national non-governmental
youth organizations and the private sector.

114.     Special and additional efforts may be required to develop and
disseminate model frameworks for integrated policies and to identify
and organize an appropriate division of responsibilities among both
governmental and non-governmental entities concerned with
youth-related issues.  Special and additional efforts could also be
directed towards strengthening national capacities for data collection
and dissemination of information, research and policy studies,
planning, implementation and coordination, and training and advisory
services.

115.     National coordinating mechanisms should be appropriately
strengthened for integrated youth policies and programmes.  Where such
mechanisms do not exist, Governments are urged to promote their
establishment on a multilevel and cross-sectoral basis.


                     B.  Regional cooperation

116.     The activities of the United Nations regional commissions, in
cooperation with concerned regional intergovernmental and
non-governmental youth and youth-related organizations, are essential
complements to national and global action aimed at building national
capacities.

117.     Regional commissions, within their existing mandates, are
urged to promote the implementation of the Programme of Action through
incorporation of its goals in their plans, to undertake comprehensive
reviews of the progress achieved and obstacles encountered and to
identify options to further regional-level action.

118.     Regional intergovernmental meetings of ministers responsible
for youth, in cooperation with the concerned United Nations regional
commissions, regional intergovernmental organizations and regional
non-governmental youth organizations, can make particular
contributions to the formulation, implementation, coordination and
evaluation of action at the regional level, including periodic
monitoring of regional youth programmes.

119.     Data collection, dissemination of information, research and
policy studies, inter-organizational coordination and technical
cooperation, training seminars and advisory services are among the
measures which can be provided on request at the regional level to
promote, implement and evaluate youth programmes.

120.     Regional non-governmental youth organizations, regional
offices of bodies and organizations of the United Nations system and
regional intergovernmental organizations concerned with youth are
invited to consider meeting on a biennial basis to review and discuss
issues and trends and to identify proposals for regional and
subregional cooperation.  United Nations regional commissions are also
invited to play an essential role through the provision of a suitable
venue and appropriate input regarding regional action.


                  C.  International cooperation

121.     An essential role for international cooperation is to promote
conditions conducive to the implementation of the Programme of Action
at all levels.  Means available include debates at the policy level
and decisions at the intergovernmental level, global monitoring of
issues and trends, data collection and dissemination of information,
research and studies, planning and coordination, technical cooperation
and outreach and partnership among interested constituencies from both
the non-governmental and private sectors.

122.     In its capacity as the subsidiary body of the Economic and
Social Council responsible for global social development issues, the
Commission for Social Development has an important role to play as the
focal point for the implementation of the Programme of Action.  The
Commission is called upon to continue the policy-level dialogue on
youth for policy coordination and for periodic monitoring of issues
and trends.

123.     Current regional and interregional conferences of ministers
responsible for youth affairs in Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America
and the Caribbean and Western Asia are invited to intensify
cooperation among each other and to consider meeting regularly at the
international level under the aegis of the United Nations.  Such
meetings could provide an effective forum for a focused global
dialogue on youth-related issues.

124.     Youth-related bodies and organizations of the United Nations
system are invited to cooperate with the above-mentioned conferences. 
In this connection, the existing ad hoc inter-agency working group on
youth should meet annually and invite all concerned bodies and
agencies of the United Nations system and related intergovernmental
organizations to discuss ways and means by which they can promote the
implementation of the Programme of Action on a coordinated basis.

125.     Effective channels of communication between non-governmental
youth organizations and the United Nations system are essential for
dialogue and consultation on the situation of youth and implications
for the implementation of the Programme of Action. The General
Assembly has repeatedly stressed the importance of channels of
communication in the field of youth.  The Youth Forum of the United
Nations system could contribute to the implementation of the Programme
of Action through the identification and promotion of joint
initiatives to further its objectives so that they better reflect the
interests of youth.


         1.  Data collection and dissemination of information

126.     Capacities to collect, analyse and present data in a timely
and accurate fashion are essential for effective planning and
target-setting, for monitoring issues and trends and for evaluating
progress achieved in implementing the Programme of Action.  Special
attention should be directed towards building national capacities and
institutions regularly to collect and compile socio-economic data
series that are both cross-sectional and disaggregated by cohort.  To
this end, interested centres and institutions may wish to consider the
possibility of jointly strengthening or establishing, in cooperation
with the United Nations, networks concerned with collection of data
and publication of statistics and to realize thereby greater economies
of scale in the development and dissemination of statistics in the
field of youth.

127.     Major contributions related to data and statistics in the
field of youth are currently being made by the United Nations.  Such
contributions include the socio-economic data collection and
statistical development activities of the Statistics Division of the
Department for Economic and Social Information and Policy Analysis of
the Secretariat; the youth policies and programmes information
activities of the Division for Social Policy and Development of the
Department for Policy Coordination and Sustainable Development of the
Secretariat; the educational and literacy data collection activities
of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural
Organization; and the youth advisory networks of the United Nations
Environment Programme.  Concerned bodies and agencies of the United
Nations system are urged to explore ways and means of achieving
greater coherence in data collection and the publication of
statistics.  This could include programme planning and coordination on
an inter-agency basis.  For example, the data bank programme on
adolescent health of the World Health Organization is coordinated with
the work of the Statistics Division of the Secretariat.  Other bodies
and agencies of the United Nations system are invited to contribute
data in their respective areas of expertise to an integrated
socio-economic data bank on youth.  For instance, the international
drug abuse assessment system of the United Nations International Drug
Control Programme is urged to consider including a component on youth
and drugs.  An inventory of innovative youth policies, programmes and
projects could be coordinated and made available to interested users
by the Department for Policy Coordination and Sustainable Development. 
Other topics that could be considered for joint action include
juvenile delinquency, runaways and homeless youth.

128.     Public information and communications are equally important
in building awareness of youth issues, as well as a consensus on
appropriate planning and action.  The bodies and organizations of the
United Nations system concerned are urged, as a matter of priority, to
review publications currently produced and to identify ways in which
these publications can better promote the Programme of Action and
areas in which they may need to be complemented through the production
of leaflets and posters in connection with special events.

129.     To encourage widespread awareness of and support for the
Programme of Action, Governments, non-governmental organizations and,
as appropriate, the private sector, are urged to consider the
possibility of preparing both printed and audiovisual materials
related to areas of concern in the Programme of Action.  This could be
carried out with the assistance of and in cooperation with the United
Nations and materials could be disseminated through United Nations
public information channels.  In addition young people and youth
organizations are urged to identify and plan information activities
that focus on priority issues, which they would undertake within the
context of the Programme of Action.


                    2.  Research and policy studies

130.     Comparative studies on issues and trends concerning youth are
essential to the continuous expansion and development of the global
body of knowledge on relevant theories, concepts and methods. 
International, regional and national research centres and institutions
concerned with youth-related issues are urged to consider the
possibility of establishing cooperative relationships with the United
Nations to ensure effective links between the implementation of the
Programme of Action and relevant research and studies.

131.     Cooperation in strengthening and improving national
capacities for the research, design, conduct and dissemination of
relevant studies on the situation of young people is a closely related
concern.

132.     A third concern is the improved planning and coordination of
the scarce human and financial resources available so that appropriate
attention is accorded to initiatives undertaken by young people at all
levels, related to priority areas identified in the Programme of
Action, to the identification and assessment of issues and trends and
to the review and evaluation of policy initiatives.


                   3.  Planning and coordination

133.     Using the mechanisms currently available within the United
Nations system for planning, programming and coordinating activities
concerning youth, interested bodies and organizations of the United
Nations system are urged to review their medium-term planning process
to give appropriate consideration to reinforcing a youth perspective
in their activities.  They are also urged to identify current and
projected programme activities that correspond to the priorities of
the Programme of Action so that these activities can be reinforced
throughout the system.  Appropriate attention should be directed
towards identifying opportunities for joint planning among interested
members of the system so that joint action may be undertaken which
reflects their respective areas of competence, that is of direct
interest to young people or that responds to priority needs of young
people in special circumstances.

134.     A complementary mechanism for coordination is provided by the
channels that have been developed between the United Nations and
intergovernmental and non-governmental youth organizations.  Such
mechanisms require appropriate strengthening to enable them to respond
better to priorities for action, as identified in the Programme of
Action.


       4.  Technical cooperation, training and advisory services

135.     Technical cooperation is an essential means for building
national capacities and institutional capabilities.  Bodies and
organizations of the United Nations system that have not already done
so are urged to review and assess their range of programmatic and
operational activities in the light of the priorities for action
identified in the Programme of Action and to reinforce a youth
dimension in technical cooperation activities.  In this regard,
special attention should be directed towards measures that will serve
to promote expanded opportunities for international technical
assistance and advisory services in the field of youth as a means of
building expanded and strengthened networks of institutions and
organizations.

136.     There is a need to continue to improve the impact of
technical cooperation activities carried out by the United Nations
system, including those that relate to youth activities.  The United
Nations system must continue to assist Governments, at their request,
to ensure implementation of national plans and strategies within the
national priorities and programmes to support youth activities.  As
administrative overheads can reduce the resources available for
technical cooperation, these should be reduced.  National execution
should be the preferred modality for the implementation of projects
and programmes and, where required, developing countries should be
assisted in improving their national capacities for project and
programme formulation and execution.

137.     Countries with economies in transition, when required, should
also be assisted in improving their national capacities for project
and programme formulation and execution.

138.     The organization, on an inter-agency basis, of missions to
review, assess and plan technical cooperation concerning youth,
available on request to Governments, represents a specific
contribution by the United Nations system to the implementation of the
Programme of Action.

139.     The United Nations Youth Fund represents a unique resource to
support catalytic and innovative action concerning youth.  Programme
implementation can be furthered through the Fund's support, in both a
technical and a financial sense, of pilot action, studies and
technical exchanges on issues concerning youth that encourage the
participation of youth in devising and carrying out projects and whose
short time-frames often make it difficult to obtain needed support
from conventional budgeting processes.  The capacities of the Fund for
innovative action are, however, limited in the light of Programme
priorities, and interested Governments, non-governmental organizations
and the private sector are invited to consider the possibility of
supporting the activities of the Fund on a predictable and sustained
basis.  To this end, the parties concerned may wish to consider the
possibility of constituting an advisory body at an appropriate level
to review the application of the terms of reference of the Fund and
priorities and means of strengthening its capacities.


     5.  Outreach and partnership among specialized constituencies

140.     A crucial element in implementing the Programme of Action is
the recognition that governmental action alone is not sufficient to
ensure its success, that rather it should be further complemented by
the support of the international community.  This process will also
require both systematic outreach and partnership among the Programme's
many constituencies in both the non-governmental and private sectors.

141.     A critical first step is phased expansion and regularization
of channels of communication between the United Nations and
non-governmental youth organizations to include representatives of
interested private sector organizations.  This would build upon the
provisions set forth in General Assembly resolution 45/103 of 14
December 1990 concerning the involvement of youth and non-governmental
youth organizations in the formulation of the Programme of Action. 
Youth, youth-related organizations and interested private sector
organizations are urged to identify, in partnership with Governments,
ways in which they could contribute to action at the local level to
implement the Programme, and to the periodic review, appraisal and
formulation of options to achieve its goals and objectives.

142.     Implementation of the Programme of Action offers important
opportunities to expand technical and cultural exchanges among young
people through new partnerships in both the public and private
sectors; to identify and test improved ways to leverage public
resources, in partnership with the non-governmental and private
sectors, to further Programme priorities; and to encourage and jointly
plan innovative approaches to critical issues concerning youth.

143.     Relevant voluntary organizations, particularly those
concerned with education, employment, juvenile justice, youth
development, health, hunger, ecology and the environment, and drug
abuse, can further the implementation of the Programme of Action by
encouraging the involvement of young people in programme planning and
field activities.  The Programme of Action can contribute to the work
of such organizations because it provides a global policy framework
for consultation and coordination.


                                Notes

1/   A/50/3 and Add.1 and 2.

2/   See A/40/256, annex.

3/   Report of the International Conference on Population and
Development, Cairo, 5-13 September 1994 (United Nations publication,
Sales No. E.95.XIII.18), chap. I, resolution 1, annex.

4/   A/CONF.166/9, chap. I, resolution 1, annexes I and II.

5/   See A/CONF.177/20, chap. I, resolution 1, annexes I and II.

6/   Report of the United Nations Conference on Environment and
Development, Rio de Janeiro, 3-14 June 1992, (A/CONF.151/26/Rev.1
(Vol. I and Vol. I/Corr.1, Vol. II, Vol. III and Vol. III/Corr.1))
(United Nations publication, Sales No.E.93.I.8 and corrigenda), vol.
I: Resolutions Adopted by the Conference, resolution 1, annex I.

7/   A/CONF.157/24 (Part I), chap. III.

8/   E/ICEF/L.1387, annex, sect. V.

9/   Report of the International Conference on Population and
Development, Cairo, 5-13 September 1994 (United Nations publication,
Sales No. E.95.XIII.18) chap. I, resolution 1, annex, para. 6.9.

10/  Ibid., para. 4.22.

11/  Resolution 44/25, annex.

12/  Resolution 34/180, annex.

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Date last posted: 15 January 2000 16:15:30
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