The UN Security Council and the Rule of Law
Report on latest session of the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
Regarding Rights readers who enjoyed the account provided by Maria Virginia Brás Gomes, member of the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, of the Committee’s 55th session, will be interested in a recent update on the Committee’s activities provided by the Geneva based ‘Global Initiative for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights’. GI-ESCR was reporting on the Committee’s 57th session, which concluded in March. At this session, the Committee considered Namibia, Canada and Kenya’s State reports. It adopted two new General Comments: one on the right to sexual and reproductive health (art 12 of ICESCR) and one on the right to just and favourable conditions of work (art 7), and continued to deliberate on a proposal for a General Comment on human rights, the environment and development. GI-ESCR’s discussion of the General Comment on the right to just and favourable conditions of work, which Virginia played a key role in drafting, is available here.
The Committee also considered two Communications under the Optional Protocol to ICESCR, which entered into force in May 2013 and now has twenty one state parties (Australia is not among them). GI-ESCR reports that the Committee has now considered five cases under the Optional Protocol, finding three inadmissible (on the grounds that the Optional Protocol had not entered into force at the time of the relevant events); finding a violation in one case (against Spain in relation to housing rights); and finding no violation in another case (this case has not yet been published).