In July 2020, the Voluntary National Review of Peru about advances toward the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) and the 2030 Agenda was presented at the High Level Political Forum (HLPF) in the United Nations (UN) headquarters in New York, that was organized by the UN Department of the Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA). This event was an opportunity for a group of Peruvian civil society organizations to strengthen advocacy work on SDG 11: “Sustainable cities and communities” and, consequently, improve public policy of the State of Peru, especially for the Habitat International Coalition members in Latin America (HIC-AL), such as the following Peruvian organizations: Population Research, Documentation and Advisory Center (CIDAP, in the Spanish abbreviation) and the Center of Development Studies and Promotion (DESCO, in the Spanish abbreviation), which decided to engage in the national examination process.
HIC in Latin America and HIC’s Housing and Land Rights Network (HLRN-HIC) contributed to clarify the process based on the proper inclusion of civil society in the elaboration of VNR, as requested by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights. Through the lens of each Member State’shuman rights obligations. CIDAP and DESCO joined select civil society representatives, centered on three spaces: The National Agreement, the Dialogue for Combating Poverty and National Assembly of Regional Governments, which were not sufficient to represent Peru’s civil society, because of its composition and performance. This was noted on the document Recommendations of the Civil Society to Peru’s Government on the 2020 II Voluntary National Review written by CIDAP and DESCO, and presented to the Permanent Mission Representative of Peru, the UN System Resident Coordinator in Peru and to the UN DESA Major Groups and Stakeholders.
2020 Voluntary National Review of Peru
The State of Peru tasked the National Center for Strategic Planning (CEPLAN, in the Spanish abbreviation), governing body of the National System for Strategic Planning (SINAPLAN, in the Spanish abbreviation), to produce the “2020 National Review of Peru: The protection of life during and after the crisis.” In the content of this review, the second one of its type, it will serve as an input to the elaboration of a Strategic Plan for National Development (PEDN, in the Spanish abbreviation).
For CIDAP and DESCO, the collaboration of HIC and HLRN was very significant for the examination of VNR, as well as for the elaboration of the aforementioned recommendation, by clarifying that Peru’s VNR had no relation to the 2030 Agenda, SDGs, its goals and indicators, not in its form or content. Examining Peru’s VNR required extracting certaini relevant passages and creating the possible links.
High Level Political Forum, Major Groups and the Positioning of Peru’s Civil Society
The High Level Political Forum is the main platform monitors implementation of the 2030 Agenda for sustainable development and the SDGs. CIDAP and DESCO consider it an important fórum to advocate public policy linked to SDG 11. Through the Non Governmental Organizations Major Group, it is possible to intervene in official meetings, submit documents, present oral or written contributions, and to make recommendations. Thanks to the collaboration of HIC-AL, we received the necessary information to participate in the discussions as stakeholders and submit the recommendations’ document about SDG 11 in Peru and make visible in the final collective document called “Positioning of Major Groups and Stakeholders of Peru” —presented in the same official space where the Peruvian delegation launched its VNR at the HLPF— that the SDGs are only considered in the formulation process of the Strategic Plan for National Development, without including any of its advances in the VNR, as requested by UN DESA.
Finally, from this process emanated local, national and regional lessons to articulate strategic actions, and for this to be an opportunity for advocacy from civil society to obtain fair and inclusive public policies for a different world.