Mr. Djoharis Lubis
Deputy Coordinating Minister for People's Welfare
of the Republic of Indonesia
the 43rd Session of the Commission for Social Development
on Agenda Item 3 (b):
Review of relevant United Nations plans and programmes of action pertaining to the situation of social groups
New York, 14 February 2005
My delegation is pleased to address the Commission for Social Development on agenda item 3(b), concerning the World Programme of Action concerning Disabled Persons, World Programme of Action for Youth to the Year 2000 and Beyond, Madrid International Plan of Action 2002 and Tenth Anniversary of the International Year of the Family and Beyond. My delegation welcomes the reports reviewing relevant United Nations plans and programmes of action pertaining to the situation of social groups.
According to the document "Monitoring the Implementation of the Standard Rules of Equalization of Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities", Indonesia supports the mainstreaming of disability issues into development programmes. At the national level, the Government of Indonesia has sought to infuse Law No. 4/1997 on Disabled Persons and the Government Regulation No.43/1998 on Efforts to Enhance Social Welfare of the Disabled Persons into the programming and activities of the government institutions and the private sector. The Government of Indonesia is also preparing a draft National Action Plan to Enhance the Social Welfare of Disabled Persons (2004-2013) to implement measures so that the disabled can participate in and benefit from the development process.
On the issue of youth, Indonesia remains committed to implementing the World Programme of Action for Youth to the Year 2000 and Beyond which provides a policy framework and practical guidelines for national action and international support to improve the situation of youth. The Programme of Action emphasizes those elements, such as education, access to employment opportunities, good health and freedom to participate in decision-making processes, that will allow young people to live full lives in their societies.
The challenges facing Indonesia's implementation of the Programme of Actions are formidable as we have to address the many emerging social issues surrounding the young generation. Combating trafficking on women and children, HIV/AIDS and drugs abuse as well as promoting gender equality are among the priorities for dealing with the nation’s youth. Particular" "attention will also be paid to the impact of poverty on youth.
It is saddening to learn that over one third of all children in developing countries are living in absolute poverty. Youth and poverty are interrelated issues. Youth constitute the core of productivity and the engine of economic growth. Unfortunately, young people trapped in poverty are prevented from making an optimum contribution to the development of their community. Enabling access to economic and social resources is therefore of crucial importance. All of our youth, male and female alike, should have access to education, health services, and employment opportunities.
In this light, Indonesia pays special attention to youth as essential "human resources for development. Indonesia, in cooperation with the UN-DESA, recently held a Regional Workshop on "Youth in Poverty in Southeast Asia", on 2-4 August 2004 in Yogyakarta. The workshop brought together participants at government and expert levels from Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Myanmar; the- Philippines and Vietnam. At the national level, in commemoration of the International Youth Day, Indonesia's Vice-President launched the Indonesia Youth Employment Network on August 12, 2004 in Jakarta. Indonesia is also one of the first nations to have volunteered to be a "lead" country to "prepare reviews and action plans" on youth employment.
With regard to the issue of ageing, Indonesia is fully committed to the implementation of the Madrid Plan of Action on Ageing 2002 and the 1999 Macao Plan of Action on Ageing for Asia and the Pacific. In Indonesia, the elderly make up 22.71 percent of the national population. They are evenly distributed, in urban and rural areas, with 11.20 per cent living in urban areas, and 11.51 per cent in the rural areas. Given this situation, the development policies and programmes of Indonesia are designed to improve health services and facilities, to develop social security and to provide protective mechanisms for older persons -especially for those who are poor, disabled and victims of violence - wherever they may be found.
With the well-being of older persons uppermost in mind, the Government of Indonesia attaches great importance to the implementation of the Madrid Plan of Action on Ageing 2002. Guided by that plan, it formulated a draft National Action Plan on Ageing 2003-2008 and established a National Commission on Ageing by Presidential Decree No. 52/2004. The Commission's main task is to assist the President in coordinating the implementation of national policies and programmes, as well as rendering professional advice and recommendations to the President.
On the issue of family, Indonesia remains committed to the goals of the International Year of Family and agrees with the view of the Doha International Conference for the Family held in November 2004, which is that the family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society. Strong families contribute not only to the good order of society, but they represent as well an untapped contributor to its economic and social development. The family must receive the widest possible protection and assistance by society and the State. Indonesia has therefore put into effect a policy on "Quality Community and Family 2014" that impacts family positively.
This policy, which aims to build family resilience and enhance the capacity of women to respond effectively to the basic needs of their families, has five main goals. It will seek to reduce poverty, increase family access to information and economic resources, impart and improve child- rearing skills, reduce domestic violence and promote environmental consciousness among family members.
In conclusion, Indonesia recognizes that mainstreaming of disability, youth, ageing and family into national development agendas particularly in national poverty reduction strategies and programs related to the Millennium Development Goals, is not an easy task for developing countries. My delegation would like to call on the funds and programs and specialized agencies of the United Nations to continuously render financial support and technical assistance to developing countries in implementing the World Programme of Actions concerning disabled persons, youth and ageing, at the national level.
Of particular importance in this regard is building country capacity for data collection and analysis, using poverty reduction and geographical information system as well as appropriate technology, so that each country will be able to engage in sound policy formulation and program planning of benefit to the various social groups, based on the individual country's characteristics and national potential.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
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