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UNA-USA Submits Universal Periodic Review (UPR) Review

September 19, 2014
On September 12, 2014 UNA-USA officially submitted its completed Universal Periodic Review (UPR) stakeholder report on human rights in the U.S to both the UN’s human rights office and the U.S. State Department. The UPR is a new tool of the UN Human Rights Council, the UN’s top human rights organ, that reviews the human rights situation of all 193 UN members. Civil society organizations like UNA-USA have a strong role to play in the reviews by submitting accompanying reports detailing human rightsre-related challenges and progress in each country.  To date, 100% of all UN member-states have participated in the UPR.
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The Ebola Crisis: What You Can Do To Help

September 15, 2014
The Ebola outbreak in West Africa – the worst in the history of the disease – has claimed more than 2,400 lives and continues to spread. Countries hit by this disease need more resources: more health care workers, more beds, more protective equipment, and more ambulances.
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Oregon Native Selected as New U.S. Youth Observer to UN

August 26, 2014
The United Nations Association of the USA (UNA-USA) and the U.S. Department of State today named Jackson Dougan the next U.S. Youth Observer to the United Nations. As Youth Observer, Dougan will be the third American to represent a youth voice at the United Nations General Assembly and other UN events throughout the next year. He was selected from more than 600 applicants to the program, and will engage with peers and report on his experiences over the year.  
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UNA-USA Hosts YALI Fellows

August 20, 2014
For August and September, UNA-USA is excited to host a Fellow with President Obama’s Young African Leaders Initiative.
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New Online Hub Gives Youth a Connection to the UN

August 12, 2014
New York -- Today, on International Youth Day, the United Nations Association of the USA (UNA-USA) launched its new GenUN online hub, genun.unausa.org, an action-oriented platform designed to empower young people to join with the United Nations in solving some of the world’s most important challenges. GenUN provides resources and opportunities for young people to get involved in the global issues that they care most about.
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Ask the Senate to ratify the UN Disabilities Treaty

July 17, 2014
One billion people with disabilities around the world need our help right now. That includes 57 million Americans — of whom 5.5 million are veterans with disabilities — who wish to serve, study, work and travel overseas.
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Register to Reserve Your Spot at the 65th Annual UN DPI/NGO Conference

July 11, 2014
UN Department of Public Information/NGO Conference titled "2015 and Beyond: Our Action Agenda". The conference will take place at UN Headquarters in New York City, August 27-29. The focus this year will be the opportunity for civil society to present to the UN General Assembly and the world the action items the community deems essential to be included in the Post-2015 Development Agenda which will be adopted by the Member States. This is a unique occasion for UNA-USA Members to meet and work closely with other activists and civil society networks from around the world. To register to attend this conference, complete the online survey by August 10.
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Justice Michael Kirby Honored With Leo Nevas Human Rights Award

July 8, 2014
New York -- Following his leadership in a landmark report on human rights violations in North Korea, the United Nations Association of the USA (UNA-USA) Leo Nevas Human Rights Task Force will award Justice Michael Kirby with the 2014 Leo Nevas Human Rights Award. Recognizing Justice Kirby’s work as chair of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, the award will be presented at the UN Foundation and UNA-USA Global Leadership Dinner on Wednesday, October 22, 2014 in New York.
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Register for the DPI/NGO Conference in New York

June 17, 2014
The 65th Annual UN DPI/NGO Conference, titled “2015 and Beyond: Our Action Agenda,” will be held at United Nations Headquarters on August 27-29, 2014. 
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New Applicants Sought for Yearlong Term of U.S. Youth Observer at the UN

May 19, 2014
New York -- The United Nations Association of the USA (UNA-USA) and the U.S. Department of State are now accepting applications for the U.S. Youth Observer at the UN for the 2014-2015 term. The program gives one U.S. citizen, aged 18 to 25, the opportunity to see the United Nations in action during the UN General Assembly meeting in New York; attend high-profile UN events throughout the year; and report his or her experiences to U.S. officials, peers, and the world.
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UNA Chicago Chapter Holds Universal Periodic Review Consultation

May 16, 2014
On May 1, the UNA Greater Chicago Chapter convened a UN “Universal Periodic Review”(UPR) consultation event among dozens of community leaders, grassroots activists, and students at the Mars Gallery in Chicago. The event focused on the overarching theme of “Core International Human Rights Treaties.” After learning about the UPR, a tool of the new UN Human Rights Council which assesses the human rights records of all 193 UN member states, attendees separated into smaller groups to discuss the topic in more detail with a specific focus on the U.S. human rights record. One group, for example, focused on the protections in the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) while another prioritized the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW). At the end of the meeting, all groups agreed that the U.S. should strive to advance its principles and global human rights leadership through ratifying instruments like the CRPD and CEDAW.
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1,500 Students to Attend International Model UN at United Nations Headquarters

May 15, 2014
NEW YORK -- Today, 1,500 high students from around the world will join together for the United Nations Association of the USA’s (UNA-USA) Global Classrooms® International Model UN Conference. The opening ceremonies will be held in the General Assembly Hall of the United Nations.
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Looking to the Children: The GAVI Alliance and the Future of Immunizations

April 28, 2014
We, as members of the UNA chapter of Catholic University, had the pleasure of sitting down with Joan Awunyo-Akaba. Joan is a passionate advocate for global immunization and vaccination and the founder and director of a NGO which focuses on alleviating poverty in Ghana. She also serves as the representative for civil society on the board of the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization, also known as the GAVI Alliance. At the start of the new millennium, the GAVI Alliance was founded to reduce the number of children unable to receive life-saving vaccinations. Joan Awunyo-Akaba furthered our awareness of the role that vaccinations and immunizations play for countless children.
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LGBT Teleconference Opens Door for New UNA Affinity Group

April 18, 2014
Marking the 2014 Day of Silence across the U.S., UNA-USA held a nationwide conference call on the global effort for LGBT rights. The two speakers, Marianne Mollmann, Program Director with the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission, and Heather Collister, Program Manager with the International Service for Human Rights, joined the call to provide an expert-level landscape of LGBT rights at the UN and around the world. 
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UNA Georgetown Puts “U” in UPR

April 3, 2014
On March 28, 2014 UNA Georgetown convened a grassroots consultation related to the upcoming UN Universal Periodic Review (UPR) of the U.S. human rights record in 2015. The session discussed the theme of “preventing violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity” and featured UNA-USA Leo Nevas Task Force member and UPR expert, Joshua Cooper. Participants were asked to share and present their ideas, observations, recommendations during the session and engaged topics ranging from the prevention of bullying to advancing awareness on LGBT rights.
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58th Commission on the Status of Women: An Amazing, Inspiring and Empowering Opportunity

March 28, 2014
This was my first experience as a delegate attending the 58th session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW). The commission took place at the United Nations Headquarters in New York from March 10-21. The theme of this commission was implementing the Millennium Development Goals. Around 6,000 leaders from around the world shared their talent, passion, and expertise on matters including: ensuring gender equality, human rights, and education; improving health conditions; eradicating poverty; ending violence against women; and stopping human trafficking. During the commission I participated in official events sponsored by UN Country Missions and also in side events organized by the UN Women, NGOs, and other civil organizations.  
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1,500 Students to Take On Global Issues At International Middle School Model UN

March 27, 2014
NEW YORK -- Today, 1,500 middle school students from around the world will join together at UN Headquarters for the United Nations Association of the USA’s (UNA-USA) Global Classrooms® International Middle School Model UN Conference. This three-day conference is the only international Model UN conference designed specifically for students in grades 5-8, and is the largest middle school Model UN in the world.
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Achieving Progress for All: Youth, Women and the Post-2015 Landscape

March 26, 2014
Last Friday, the 58th Session on the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) ended, and the results of the “Youth, Women and the Post-2015 Landscape” survey are in! This survey was distributed in order to help me gain a better understanding of how youth feels about the issues being discussed in CSW and then relay this understanding back to as many people as I could. During the past two weeks of CSW, discussions focused on problems including extreme poverty and hunger, environmental policy, human trafficking, and the role of culture and arts in sustainable development. Also important were the discussions pertaining to the disproportionately large amount of women facing the world’s problems when compared to men. Everyone I met, spoke to, and learned from at CSW realized the ways in which gender inequality and discrimination not only hurt women but all groups.
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My Experience at the 58th Commission on the Status of Women

March 25, 2014
Over the last couple weeks, and during my first delegation to the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) at the United Nations, I participated in official events sponsored by country missions and UN agencies on diverse matters, including ending child marriage; empowering women in politics; ending modern-day slavery; closing the gender gap in agriculture; encouraging women for greater participation in Afghan justice; harnessing the benefits of clean cook stoves to reduce smoke-related illnesses and environmental degradation; ending all forms of violence and discrimination against women; the urgent need to mitigate climate change; the role of the data revolution and need for gender disaggregated data; and much, much more.
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CSW: Implementing the MDGs for Women and Girls

March 21, 2014
As always, the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW), held each year in March at the United Nations, was breathtaking in the breadth and depth of issues explored as well as the commitment, passion and talent of 6,000 community leaders meeting together from all over the world. CSW is the lead event of the global campaign for women’s equality and empowerment, and it includes both government ministers reporting on progress in women’s advancement in their own countries and NGO leaders sharing challenges and lessons learned in their respective countries. It was an honor to be there with such remarkable women.
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