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Civil Society

Civil society engagement in the 2008 high-level meeting on AIDS

UNAIDS has been working closely with the Office of the President of the General Assembly (OPGA), the Non-Governmental Liaison Service (NGLS) and the Civil Society Support Mechanism (CSSM) to support civil society engagement in the high-level meeting and in the country level reporting processes on AIDS. The CSSM is a coalition led by the International Council of AIDS Service Organizations (ICASO) and the International Women’s Health Coalition (IWHC).

Civil Society Task Force

The United Nations Office of the President of the General Assembly has requested UNAIDS Secretariat to convene a Civil Society Task Force to support effective and meaningful participation of civil society organizations and the private sector in the High Level Meeting on AIDS to be held from 10 to 11 June 2008.

The Task Force provides a link for and to civil society groups and coalitions interested in participating in the High Level Meeting. Task Force representatives work with UNAIDS and the Office of the President of the General Assembly to advise on key aspects of the High Level Meeting.

The Civil Society Task Force advises UNAIDS and the Office of the President of the General Assembly in key decisions relating to the effective and meaningful participation of civil society organizations and the private sector in the 2008 High Level Meeting on AIDS.

The Task Force leads on:

The Task Force advises on:

The members of the Task Force are:

On-line civil society application process and accreditation

The General Assembly has requested that a list of relevant civil society representatives, “in particular associations of people living with HIV, non-governmental organizations, including organizations of women and young people, girls and boys and men, faith-based organizations and the private sector, especially pharmaceutical companies and representatives of labour”, including on the basis of the recommendations of UNAIDS and taking into account the principle of equitable geographical representation, be submitted to Member States for consideration on a no-objection basis for a final decision by the Assembly on participation in the high-level meeting, including panel discussions. (paragraph 8, Resolution 62/178)

An on-line application process for civil society organizations was launched in January 2008 to facilitate applications by civil society organizations to attend the meeting.  It included background information on the High Level Meeting and Civil Society Hearing, as well as two different forms: a registration form for those organizations in consultative status with ECOSOC; and an accreditation form for non-ECOSOC accredited organizations wishing to attend the high-level meeting. Registration for non-ECOSOC accredited organizations closed on 22 February 2008.

The full list of non-ECOSOC accredited organizations wishing to attend the meeting was then shared with UNAIDS regional and country offices, the Civil Society Task Force and PCB NGO delegation to assist in a verification process. Names of the verified organizations were then shared with Member States for their consideration. Some organizations were not verified if there was insufficient independent information to confirm that they were bona fide organizations working on AIDS. These names were not then submitted to Member States for consideration.

The final decision 62/548 and list of organizations approved for participation in the high-level meeting by Member States on 25 April 2008 are now available online.

UNAIDS New York office is working with the UN Non Governmental Liaison Service (NGLS) to prepare and send individual invitation letters to participants included in the list of accredited organizations and those applying to attend as part of an ECOSOC accredited organization delegation. These letters will be sent by e-mail or fax and a hard copy will follow by regular mail, these letters may be used by participants to apply for their visa. Organizations not accredited to attend the meeting will not receive a letter. Organizations may continue to consult the on-line application form which will shortly be adjusted to indicate the status of their application.

Please note:  With the exception of confirmed speakers and alternate speakers, UNAIDS is not able to offer financial support to civil society participants attending the HLM.  Participants in need of financial support are encouraged to seek opportunities for funding locally.