This year I had the opportunity to attend the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues which was held in New York City from May 16th – 27th. In addition, my name was put forward by Chickaloon Village Tribal Council members to the Tribal Link Foundation who sponsored their annual three day Project Access Permanent Forum training. I had the honor of attending both the training as well as the first few days of the Permanent Forum.
The Permanent Forum is one of three UN bodies that are mandated to deal specifically with indigenous peoples’ issues. The others are the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights and fundamental freedoms of indigenous Peoples.
The Permanent Forum is an advisory body to the Economic and Social Council with a mandate to discuss indigenous issues related to economic and social development, culture, the environment, education, health and human rights. According to its mandate, the Permanent Forum will:
1) Provide expert advice and recommendations on indigenous issues to the Council, as well as to programs, funds and agencies of the United Nations, through the Council.
2) Raise awareness and promote the integration and coordination of activities related to indigenous issues within the UN system.
3) Prepare and disseminate information on indigenous issues. (more…)