Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (UNPFII)
The Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues was established in 2000 by the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) as part of the International Decade of the World's Indigenous Peoples. Its mandate is to discuss indigenous issues related to economic and social development, culture, the environment, education, health and human rights and to:
provide expert advice and recommendations on indigenous issues to the Council, as well as to programmes, funds and agencies of the United Nations, through the Council;
raise awareness and promote the integration and coordination of activities related to indigenous issues within the UN system;
prepare and disseminate information on indigenous issues.
The first meeting of the Permanent Forum was held in May 2002, and yearly meetings take place either in New York or Geneva.
At its third meeting in 2004, the Forum recommended that:
The United Nations system fully explore the protection, use and promotion of indigenous (including traditional) knowledge and ensure synergies across the relevant bodies currently investigating the issues (specifically WIPO, UNESCO, UNCTAD, WHO, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, and others) and furthermore invite the Forum to participate;
The CBD secretariat, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, UNESCO, WIPO, WTO and other relevant United Nations system organizations, under the auspices of the Forum, establish guidelines, ethical codes of conduct, best practices and practical guidelines relating to indigenous peoples, cultural heritage and the access to and use of traditional cultural expressions and knowledge, in close cooperation with indigenous peoples; The CBD and other relevant United Nations bodies such as UNEP, the Global Environmental Facility (GEF), UNDP, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, the World Bank, WIPO, the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora and the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands, support indigenous peoples’ organizations in order to develop capacity on research, work and proposals on human indicators applicable to the implementation of the environmental conventions and the plans and programmes of work of the Convention on Biological Diversity.
Recommendations from the Permanent Forum are considered by the Economic and Social Council for adoption as decisions and resolutions.
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