Item6: Implementation of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples: Good Practices and Lessons Learned

EMRIP A.I. 6, “Ten Years of the Implementation of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples:  Good Practices and Lessons Learned”

U.S. Intervention as delivered by Jessica Carl

Geneva, Thursday, July 13, 2017; morning session

Thank you, Chair, and thanks to Chief Little Child for his presentation.

The United States is pleased to take part in this interactive dialogue, and appreciates the work EMRIP has done on its preliminary report on implementing the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.  We are committed to improving the situation of indigenous peoples in the United States and throughout the world, including through achieving the objectives of the Declaration.  While progress has been made toward achieving the ends of the Declaration, we recognize that more must be done.  We are pleased that, as the draft report notes, the UN human rights treaty bodies and the Universal Periodic Review process are examining the situation of indigenous peoples throughout the world, including with regard to the goals set out in the Declaration.  We commend the report’s mention of human rights defenders who work in defense of the Declaration’s goals.

In the United States, U.S. agencies across the federal government look to the Declaration as they work to improve conditions for federally recognized tribes and, as appropriate, for other indigenous communities.  In addition, agencies consult regularly with tribes about proposed actions affecting tribal interests.

At the 2016 White House Tribal Nations conference, Secretaries in the Executive Branch and other senior U.S. officials held constructive discussions with tribal leaders, including on issues that are addressed in the Declaration.  The most recent 2016 White House Tribal Nations Conference Report, entitled “A Renewed Era of Federal-Tribal Relations,” is online and describes the many tribal-related policies and programs in place in the United States.

The U.S. Agency for International Development is expanding its engagement with indigenous peoples by integrating consideration of their rights into all of its projects and programs.  USAID is in the process of drafting an Indigenous Peoples Policy and developing ways to facilitate its effective implementation.

Thank you.

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