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Ministers and High Level Authorities on Social Development of the OAS Approve 2019-2021 Plan of Action of Guatemala

  March 29, 2019

The IV Meeting of Ministers and High Level Authorities on Social Development of the member states of the Organization of American States (OAS) today approved the Plan of Action for the period 2019-2021, with the objective is the construction of an Inter-American Agenda for Social Development (REMDES).

The approval of the Plan of Action is the main result of the Meeting of High Level Authorities on Social Development (REMDES) of two-day that ended today in Guatemala City.
The Plan of Action proposes, among other objectives:

· The establishment of measurements of multidimensional poverty
· The design of public policies intended to guarantee well-being and the enjoyment of a good quality of life
· To promote of social protection systems for the reduction of poverty and inequality
· The expansion of social protection with a comprehensive approach through partnerships funding, and strengthening hemispheric cooperation and technical assistance through the Inter-American Social Protection Network (IASPN).

Also, the authorities committed - through the signing of a joint declaration - to continue promoting the multidimensional measurement of poverty and to use the information resulting from the application of these measurements for the review and design of public policies and more effective programs for the eradication of poverty in all dimensions, among other commitments.

The Minister of Social Development of Guatemala Carlos Velásquez, called the adoption of the Plan of Action of Guatemala “historic”, and said it would help "measure the progress of the work carried out by the Ministry of Social Development, in terms of social protection, of which we are extremely pleased to have carried out." The Minister also thanked the OAS for its commitment "to the fight against poverty and inequality that still exists in the peoples of the America."

For his part, the Secretary for Access to Rights and Equity of the OAS Gastão Alves de Toledo said the REMDES had concluded successfully because "we have successfully fulfilled the results that we proposed at the beginning of the meeting insofar as we address issues crucial to the region that require our collective action." Specifically, he referred to "the need to improve the technical tools to better understand how to measure the multiple dimensions of poverty and, above all, how to use the results of these measurements to improve the public policies we have to eradicate it."

The Executive Secretary for Integral Development of the OAS, Kim Osborne, urged participants “to refine our policies, practices and programming to ensure that each person regardless of race, class, religion, ethnicity or gender has an opportunity to live healthy secure, productive lives and more importantly can actively participate in the socio-economic development of their country.

The meeting in Guatemala City was the fourth Ministerial on Social Development (REMDES). The first was in Reñaca, Chile in 2008; the second was in Cali, Colombia in 2010, and the third was in Asunción, Paraguay in 2016.

Reference: E-018/19