GENEVA (6 October 2020) – Against the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic estimated to push , the Human Rights Council Social Forum opens this Thursday to address the question of how to break the cycles of poverty and inequalities.
“The Social Forum will provide a unique opportunity to discuss and analyze the complex causal chain of poverty and inequality from a micro-level to a macro-level,” said Olivier De Schutter, the UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights. The discussions at the Forum will be guided by a “” developed by De Schutter, which illustrates the interconnected causal factors of poverty and inequalities at different levels.
“The analysis of the ‘poverty matrix’ should lead to a clearer framework of accountability, so no actor can evade its obligations and responsibilities to eliminate poverty and inequality by simply pointing the finger at others,” said the UN expert.
The Forum will include panels on intergenerational transmission of poverty, obstacles to realizing the right to development, fiscal and tax justice, the role of the State and public policies, the global economy and financing for sustainable development. It will also address issues in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, including access to medicines and vaccines, debt relief, feminization of poverty, and social protection.
The Forum will bring together more than 30 distinguished panellists from diverse backgrounds and geographical regions, including State representatives, UN independent experts, academics, representatives of international organizations, civil society activists, trade unions, journalists, and people with lived experience of poverty and inequalities.
The Programme of Work and other details are available on the and . The Forum will take place on 8 and 9 October in a hybrid format at Palais des Nations in Geneva and online. Registrations to participate in the Forum, either in person or online, are open to all interested stakeholders at:. The Social Forum will be broadcast live on .
The Social Forum is open to the media and participating panellists can be contacted for media interviews.