IPES Special UN Consultative Status

International Police Executive Symposium Enjoys a Special Consultative Status with the United Nations.

Non-governmental, non-profit or voluntary organizations may be admitted into a mutually beneficial working relationship with the United Nations by attaining consultative status with the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). IPES has achieved this status.

The provisions for this relationship are set out in Article 71 of the Charter of the United Nations and in ECOSOC resolution 1996/31. The rights and privileges enumerated in detail in the resolution enable qualifying organizations to make a contribution to the work programs and goals of the United Nations by serving as technical experts, advisers and consultants to inter-governmental branches and the Secretariat. Increasingly, as advocacy groups, NGOs espouse UN themes, assist in implementing plans of action, monitoring programs and declarations adopted by the Member States of the UN. There are three levels of NGO participation in UN affairs described in detail below.

Three types of status: General, Special, Roster
The different levels of status are explained below. More detailed information regarding the privileges and obligations of each level is found under the section titled Privileges and Obligations.

  1. General Category NGOs are “concerned with most of the activities of ECOSOC and its subsidiary bodies and are closely involved with the economic and social life of the peoples and areas they represent.” NGOs in the General Category are fairly large and represent large segments of societies in several countries. NGOs in the general category may send representatives to the UN, attend meetings of and its subsidiaries, can speak at ECOSOC meetings, circulate statements, and are required to submit quadrennial reports.
  2. Special Category NGOs are those that “have a special competence in, and are concerned with only a few of the fields of activity covered by ECOSOC.” Special Category NGOs are smaller and many have only recently been established. NGOs in the special category may also send representatives to the UN, attend meetings of ECOSOC and its subsidiaries, can speak at ECOSOC meetings, circulate statements, and are required to submit quadrennial reports as well.
  3. Roster Category NGOs “make occasional and useful contributions to the work of ECOSOC or its subsidiary bodies.” Roster Category NGOs have a specific technical focus. NGOs holding roster status with the UN are permitted to attend meetings of EOCSOC and its subsidiaries, but are not allowed to circulate statements, speak at meetings, and are not required to submit quadrennial reports. Following are the formal rights and arrangements for the participation of NGOs in consultative status with ECOSOC and its subsidiary bodies.

The Secretary General is authorized to offer facilities to NGOs in consultative status including:

(a) access to UN grounds and facilities;
(b) arrangement of informal discussions on matters of special interest to groups or organizations;
(c) access to UN press documentation services;
(d) accommodation for conferences or smaller meetings of consultative organizations on the work of ECOSOC; and
(e) appropriate seating arrangements and facilities for obtaining documents during public meetings.