“The Social Forum is an annual three-day meeting convened by the Human Rights Council. It is defined as a unique space for open and interactive dialogue between civil society actors, representatives of Member States, and intergovernmental organizations, on a theme chosen by the Council each year.
In setting the theme and focus of discussion for each Forum, the Human Rights Council underlines the importance of coordinated efforts at national, regional and international levels for the promotion of social cohesion based on the principles of social justice, equity and solidarity as well as of addressing the social dimension and challenges of the on-going globalization process. The debates are steered by a Chairperson-Rapporteur, appointed every year by the Human Rights Council from candidates nominated by regional groups, who is responsible for leading the discussions.
The Social Forum is open to the participation of representatives of United Nations Member States and all other interested stakeholders including intergovernmental organizations, different components of the United Nations system, representatives of the private sector, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in consultative status with the Economic and Social Council, and representatives of other non-governmental organizations, whose aims and purposes are in conformity with the spirit, purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations.
The Forum is also open to the participation of emerging actors, such as: small groups and rural and urban associations from the North and the South; anti-poverty groups; peasants’ and farmers’ organizations and their national and international associations; voluntary service organizations; youth associations; grassroots organizations, trade unions and associations of workers, among others.”
The 2017 Social Forum
The 2017 Social Forum will take place from 2 to 4 October 2017 in Room XVII, Palais des Nations, Geneva, Switzerland, in accordance with paragraph 4 of Human Rights Council resolution 32/27 entitled “The Social Forum.”
The Social Forum is an annual three-day meeting convened by the Human Rights Council. It is a unique space for open and interactive dialogue between civil society actors, representatives of Member States, and intergovernmental organizations, on a theme chosen by the Council each year.
The theme of the 2017 session of the Social Forum is the promotion and protection of human rights in the context of the HIV epidemic and other communicable diseases and epidemics.
The right to health is an inclusive right encompassing both access to health services, goods and facilities and the determinants of health. Its full realisation enables the realisation of other human rights, including the rights to food, housing, work, education, human dignity, life, non-discrimination and equality. HIV and other communicable diseases continue to exact an enormous toll on health globally, which has an impact not only at the individual, family and community levels, but also on development. A human rights-based approach to public policy in the health and relevant sectors is imperative for the prevention and treatment of HIV and other communicable diseases, as well as for the achievement of the health-related Sustainable Development Goals.
The Social Forum will explore the role of human rights in this context with a view to identifying concrete action to be taken by States and other stakeholders to ensure the promotion, protection and fulfilment of human rights.”