UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights

The Community Law Centre (CLC), University of the Western Cape, with the generous support of the Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO), is collaborating with United Nations Special Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights, Magdalena Sepulveda Carmona in order to strengthen the work of her mandate. The collaboration is aimed at ensuring that African experiences on extreme poverty are reflected in the mandate of the UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights. Also, the collaboration seeks to ensure that an African perspective is reflected in the drafting of the Guiding Principles on Poverty and Human Rights and other reports prepared by the UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty.

In September of 2012, the Human Rights Council formally adopted the Guiding Principles on Human Rights and Extreme Poverty (PORTUGUESE VERSION). More importantly, the collaboration provides the UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights an opportunity to tap into the rich and diverse expertise on socio-economic rights, gender, children’s rights, disability and post-conflict at the CLC and the Faculty of Law, University of the Western Cape.

CLC will work towards creating awareness about the mandate of the UN Special Rapporteur across the region. Creation of awareness about the work of the Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights will help in providing people living in poverty, organizations and institutions working on this issue, with the necessary information that can be applied in advancing human rights in the context of poverty. Through this collaboration, with the Special Rapporteur, key challenges hindering the enjoyment of human rights by people living in extreme poverty will be identified as well as appropriate measures to addressing these challenges.

The mandate on extreme poverty and human rights was established in 1998 by the former Commission on Human Rights, with the aim of strengthening international, regional and national efforts to reduce poverty and to alleviate the effects of poverty, by protecting and promoting human rights. This mechanism was initially known as the independent expert on extreme poverty and human rights. However, given the importance of this mechanism to addressing poverty across the world, the United Nations General Assembly appointed Ms Magdalena Sepulveda Carmona as the first Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights in May 2008.

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