IUNW has submitted an official letter to the NGOs Committee of the United Nations Economic and Social Committee (ECOSOC) expressing concern about how ECOSOC has partnered with NGOs that don’t have the best interests of the most vulnerable populations in UN member states, in mind.
IUNW Spokesperson Maya Garner expressed that IUNW is concerned about ECOSOC-affiliated NGOs that pursue agendas that are not in line with the UN’s stated commitments to human rights and democratic values. Garner argued that they often do the opposite, and in the process, undermine the objectives of the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva.
“ECOSOC-affiliated NGOs do not always prioritise UN values. Rather, they are too often motivated by narrow concerns of profitability, whether in their own organisations, or as part of a more general motivation of encouraging propaganda at the UNHRC where this should not be happening. Most of these organisations are politicized and violate the principles of the UN.”
IUNW believes that there are serious issues with NGOs linked to ECOSOC, including the facts that some actually profit from military conflict, and shield certain member states from accountability. Further, there are many NGOs that are used to pursue narrow objectives of profitability, within member states, and there are few mechanisms for holding them accountable for their actions.
Additionally, IUNW believes that there needs to be greater accountability, “when it comes to ensuring that NGOs affiliated with ECOSOC have the best interests of their target populations in mind,” and that their activities aren’t used as part of a larger campaign to normalise the violation of UN values. NGOs that are affiliated with ECOSOC must ensure that their activities at the UNHRC are not simply meant to further the national interests of certain member states.
It is likely that these structural concerns will be difficult to handle without new institutional mechanisms to solve them, and IUNW calls for their creation, if it is necessary. .