Saturday, September 11, 2010

Approaching United Nations Summit in NYC Highlights Global Poverty

From September 20-22, the United Nations headquarters in New York City will host the largest meeting of world leaders addressing worldwide poverty since 2000. In less than two weeks, leaders from all over the world will be meeting to track the progress of the Millennium Development Goals, a set of eight targets developed at the UN Millennium Summit a decade ago in 2000. The goal of this year's summit is to accelerate progress toward the MDGs, capping off a month of meetings and negotiations about global poverty, which have welcomed input from NGOs, civil society, and the private sector.

Since 2000, much progress has been made toward the Millennium Development Goals, but not enough. "It is clear that improvements in the lives of the poor have been unacceptably slow, and some hard-won gains are being eroded by the climate, food and economic crises," said UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in June.

As the summit approaches, the public must hold its leaders accountable for working toward these goals. With so many issues filling the political arena, it is vital that voters demand that international development be a top policy priority.

The weekend before the summit, millions of people from all over the world will be uniting in the event "Stand Up and Take Action" to bring attention to the MDGs. Interested in how you can get involved? Make a direct impact by contacting your congressional leaders and letting them know you support funding for international aid and development. Visit The Borgen Project's guide to making a congressional phone call and learn how easy it is to make your voice heard in the fight for a safer, healthier, and more just world.

-Elizabeth Newton

SOURCE: United Nations Millennium Development Goals