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CSocD 1995

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Commission for Social Development, 34th Session, 10-20 April 1995

Summary

At its thirty-fourth session, the Commission for Social Development considered four main items: review of the world social situation; monitoring of international plans and programmes of action; the priority subject, the World Summit for Social Development; and programme questions and other matters.

In conjunction with its regular review of the world social situation, the Commission considered, on the basis of the interim report on the World Social Situation and from the perspective of the documentation required for effective follow-up to the World Summit for Social Development, the purpose, structure and content of the quadrennial reports on the world social situation, the next of which is due in 1997.

Under the item on monitoring of international plans and programmes of action, the Commission considered the report of the Secretary-General (A/50/114) containing the conceptual framework for the preparation and observance of the International Year of Older Persons (1999) as called for by the General Assembly in its resolution 48/98. The Commission recommended to the Economic and Social Council that the Council transmit to the General Assembly for adoption at its fiftieth session a draft resolution entitled "International Year of Older Persons: towards a society for all ages". By that resolution the Assembly would, inter alia, take note of the conceptual framework and invite Member States to adapt it to national conditions and to consider formulating national programmes for the Year; and decide that henceforth the term "older persons" would be substituted for the term "the elderly", with the result that the Year and the Day concerned would be called the International Year of Older Persons and the International Day of Older Persons.

In accordance with Economic and Social Council resolution 1993/24 and General Assembly resolution 49/152, the Commission considered further, as a matter of priority, the draft world programme of action for youth to the year 2000 and beyond. The Commission recommended that the Economic and Social Council establish an open-ended working group on youth during the Council's resumed substantive session in September 1995, building upon the progress made by the Open-ended Working Group set up by the Commission during its thirty- fourth session, to complete formulation of the draft world programme of action for youth to the year 2000 and beyond, for final action by the General Assembly at its fiftieth session.

Regarding the Standard Rules on the Equalization of Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities, adopted by the General Assembly in its resolution 48/96, the Commission considered the report presented by the Special Rapporteur appointed to assist the Commission in monitoring the Standard Rules, as set out in section IV of the Rules. The Commission welcomed the general approach to monitoring by the Special Rapporteur, which was to place emphasis on advice and support to States, and, inter alia, urged States to continue their efforts to implement the Rules and to participate actively in international cooperation concerning policies for equalization of opportunities for persons with disabilities and for improvement of living conditions of persons with disabilities in developing countries. The Commission also strongly urged States and intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations to continue cooperating closely with the Special Rapporteur.

Under the same item, the Commission considered the current status of implementation of General Assembly resolution 47/237 on the International Year of the Family and took note of the intention of the Secretary-General to submit to the Assembly, at its fiftieth session, his specific proposals on the follow-up to the International Year of the Family, intended to serve as an indicative guide for action, primarily at the national and local levels.

The Commission considered its priority subject, the World Summit for Social Development, focusing on the arrangements for the implementation and follow-up of the Copenhagen Declaration and the Programme of Action. It adopted a draft resolution on the follow-up to the World Summit transmitting its views and considerations to the Economic and Social Council at its substantive session of 1995. These views included, inter alia, the recognition that the Commission for Social Development should have a central role in the follow-up to the Summit and that it should be in a position to increase the added value of its contributions to international cooperation for social development. The draft resolution also called for the review by the Economic and Social Council of the mandate, agenda and composition of the Commission, including an expansion of its membership and the annualization of its meetings; the practice of opening its debates to experts and the main actors of civil society in the field of social development was also recommended.

Under the item on programme and other matters, the Commission reviewed the proposed work programme of the Division for Social Policy and Development for the biennium 1996-1997. It decided to transmit to the Council in 1995 and requested the Secretariat to make available to the Committee on Programme and Coordination, at its thirty-fifth session, the views expressed and comments made during the debate by the Commission on this topic.

Under this item, also, the Commission took note of the report of the Board of the United Nations Research Institute for Social Development. The Commission nominated, for confirmation by the Council, five candidates for membership in the Board of the Institute, as well as five candidates for re-nomination for a further term of two years.

Finally, the Commission recommended to the Economic and Social Council a provisional agenda and documentation for its next (thirty-fifth) session. The proposed agenda, reflecting changes in the light of the decisions of the World Summit for Social Development, is built around two principal elements - namely, follow-up to the Summit and monitoring of other international plans and programmes of action in the social area.

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