No equality without economic opportunity – overcoming barriers to minority youth participation in economic life

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No equality without economic opportunity - overcoming barriers to minority youth participation in economic life

10th  session of the UN Forum on Minority Issues

Thursday 30 November 2017, 13:00 – 15:00

Palais des Nations, Room XXIII

  • Dr. Fernand De Varennes, UN Special Rapporteur on minority issues
  • Mr. Philip Alston, UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights (video message)
  • Ms. Gay McDougall, Chair of Minority Rights Group International (MRG), first UN Independent Expert on minority issues, member of the CERD
  • Mr. Chet Narayan Rasaili, Chairman of Dalit Youth Alliance, UN Minority Fellow (Nepal)
  • Ms. Alessandra Ramos Makkeda, human rights activist, UN People of African descent Fellow (Brazil)
  • Ms. Valeria Mayer, Vice-President for External Affairs of the German Youth Union, UN Minority Fellow (Russia)
  • Mr. Rafael Saavedra, lawyer, Union Romani, UN Minority Fellow (Spain)
  • Concluding observations: Mr. Mark Lattimer, Executive Director, Minority Rights Group International
  • Moderator: Mr. Robert Müller, Deputy Permanent Representative of Austria to the United Nations

In all regions, young people belonging to minorities are affected by specific barriers to access to education and to employment on an equal footing with the rest of the population. This discrimination maintains them and their communities in a state of economic and social disenfranchisement.

Minority youth are also at the forefront of the fight for equal access to education and equal economic opportunities, which are preconditions to their full and effective participation in the economic and social life. This side event will be an opportunity to explore the complex inter-relations between discrimination, economic exclusion, and social disenfranchisement, and to discuss how young people belonging to minorities are creatively challenging this situation and making efforts to break the vicious circle of poverty and exclusion.

For further information, please contact Mr. Glenn Payot, MRG ( or Mr. Yannis Fotakis, Mission of Austria to the UN (

Filed Under: Advocacy
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