Permanent Forum on People of African descent

The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) has been working to create a permanent Forum on People of African Descent since November 2014, when it was mandated to do so through the UN General assembly resolution A/RES/69/16 entitled “Programme of activities for the implementation of the International Decade for People of African Descent”.

Between 2015 and 2018, successive resolutions from the Human Rights Council (A/HRC/RES/30/17 and A/HRC/34/33) and the General Assembly (A/RES/73/262) spelled out some of the modalities of the Permanent Forum.

On 10 May 2019, OHCHR organized with the Permanent Mission of Costa Rica in Geneva a one-day consultation on the Permanent Forum on People of African Descent. It attracted over 200 participants, including representatives from governments, UN mechanisms, bodies and specialized agencies, civil society and people of African descent from all regions.

For the first time, several civil society coalitions representing hundreds of NGOs from Europe, North America, Latin America and the Caribbean engaged in extensive prior consultations and drafted concrete proposals. This signified a very good level of interest and shared aspirations of people of African descent for the Forum.

The General Assembly has recently welcomed the constructive discussions held in Geneva on the modalities of the Permanent Forum on People of African Descent, and decided to define them at its seventy-fourth session (see A/RES/74/13/).

Download the Chairperson's Report of the one-day consultation on the Permanent Forum on people of African descent (A/PFPAD/2019/1)

Background

In November 2014, the United Nations General Assembly decided, in the resolution A/RES/69/16 entitled Programme of activities for the implementation of the International Decade for People of African Descent, "to establish a forum to serve as a consultation mechanism... that would ensure the inclusive participation of all States Members of the United Nations, United Nations funds and programmes, specialized agencies, civil society organizations of people of African descent and all other relevant stakeholders".

Pursuant to A/RES/69/16, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights invited in March 2015 interested stakeholders, individuals, groups and organizations to submit information on their vision for the new forum on people of African descent. All submissions received were transmitted to Member States.

In December 2018, the UN General Assembly decided, in resolution A/RES/73/262, "to establish a permanent forum on people of African descent, which will:

  • Serve as a consultation mechanism for people of African descent and other interested stakeholders as a platform for improving the quality of life and livelihoods of people of African descent, and
  • Contribute to elaborating a United Nations declaration, which is the first step towards a legally binding instrument, on the promotion and full respect of human rights of people of African descent.

The modalities, format and substantive and procedural aspects of the permanent forum will be concluded by Member States and observer States, with further consultations with people of African descent."

Consultation on the permanent forum on people of African descent

In May 2019, OHCHR held a one-day Consultation on the permanent forum on people of African descent, in accordance with United Nations General Assembly resolution A/RES/73/262. The Consultation focused on "the modalities, format and substantive and procedural aspects of the permanent forum". 

Information note
Registration for participants
Programme of work
Information Resource

Submissions from civil society

OHCHR had held a similar consultation in 2015. The compilation of submissions is available here.  All submissions received were transmitted to member states.