Our leaders have committed to Leave No One Behind!
When the 2030 Agenda with the 17 Global Goals was adopted in 2015, world leaders did not only commit to end extreme poverty, tackle climate change and promote peace and justice, but also to reduce inequalities. Our leaders have committed to ‘leave no one behind’ and to endeavour to reach those furthest behind first. This promise means that everyone shall benefit from any progress made and none of the Global Goals can be considered met unless met for ALL.
“As we embark on this great collective journey, we pledge that no one will be left behind. Recognizing that the dignity of the human person is fundamental, we wish to see the Goals and targets met for all nations and peoples and for all segments of society. And we will endeavour to reach the furthest behind first.”– Paragraph 4 in the 2030 Agenda
”Indicators are being developed to assist this work. Quality, accessible, timely and reliable disaggregated data will be needed to help with the measurement of progress and to ensure that no one is left behind.” – Paragraph 48 in the 2030 Agenda
Why is ‘Leave No One Behind’ important?
We have seen great progress for many people and countries in recent decades. Extreme poverty has been cut in half, the health of millions of people has improved, and more children than ever go to school. But progress has not reached all. More than 700 million people still live in extreme poverty and the numbers are increasing in sub-Saharan Africa. The number of people going hungry has increased. Millions of children are still out of school, and not all who do attend are learning.
Poverty is a serious problem, but not the single explanation for why people are being left behind.
Girls and women, children and youth, the elderly, people with disabilities and mental health impairments, ethnic and religious minority groups, refugees and migrants and people who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersexual (LGBTI) are denied their human rights.
Poverty is a serious problem, but not the single explanation for why people are being left behind. Discrimination and exclusion because of sex, age, income, ethnicity, religion, disability, sexual orientation, nationality or asylum status can all hinder people from taking an active part in society.
To leave no one behind is the most important commitment in the 2030 Agenda because it puts equality and inclusion at the centre of the development agenda. ‘Leave No One Behind’ is about eliminating extreme poverty in all forms, decrease inequalities and fight discrimination. The commitment has a particular focus on people living in poverty and the most vulnerable – those who often are the most difficult to reach.
Questions and Answers
The 17 colourful icons for the Global Goals have provided a visual language which has facilitated communication and increased awareness of the 2030 Agenda. To increase the commitment for the 169 targets, icons for each target were launched in 2018.
By designing an icon for the commitment to Leave No One Behind, we want to show the importance of addressing inequality at different levels of society – from the local to the global. The commitment Leave No One Behind is fundamental to the Agenda. The commitment is about making active choices to reach groups in communities that live in vulnerability or are discriminated upon. It is important that any progress made also include groups that are currently disadvantaged, marginalized and discriminated upon in society.
The visualisation of the commitment through an icon should be seen as a catalyst for a deeper understanding of the significance of the 2030 Agenda and strengthen our advocacy work. An inclusive process to anchor and to gather views and perspectives from many different groups in society is central to the project’s success.
CONCORD Sweden and Forum Syd, two Swedish platforms for Swedish civil society organisations.
The New Division is the communication group who designed the globally acknowledged icons for the Global Goals; they possess knowledge about the communication language of the 2030 Agenda.
The message and values have been discussed at two workshops. One with members of CONCORD Sweden and one during the UN High Level Political Forum (HLPF) in July 2019. The second round of consultations was made digitally through the following channels:
- CONCORD Sweden’s working group for the 2030 Agenda
- Communications officers in CONCORD Sweden’s member organisations
- United Nations Association of Sweden’s network for the 2030 Agenda
- International networks and organisations through Major Group and Other Stakeholders and Youth and Children Major Group
- CONCORD Europe
- Communications network for the 2030 Agenda, Sweden
- Sida and the Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs (Global agenda)
CONCORD Sweden and Forum Syd.
Sida (Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency)
It is a symbol that shows inclusion and that the Global Goals are about people. The icon has a simple and clean design that does not exclude or discriminate. We all have a head and a heart. But we are also different, and the colours symbolise those differences. The round wheel stands for unity and that we all need to be involved to achieve change. We have chosen a clean and simple icon with a clear link to the original symbol for the Global Goals. The new icon is part of the entire visualisation available for the Global Goals.
No, the icon for the Global Goals should continue to be used as the icon for the agenda as a whole. The icon for Leave No One Behind is a further development of the icon for the Global Goals and should be used when the commitment to Leave No One Behind is in focus.
The Global Goals, all the targets and now also the icon for Leave No One Behind is open source. This means that they are free to use but not to modify.
The icons are under a creative common-license called creative commons attribution 3.0 unported (CC-BY).
A CC-BY license is the creative commons license that gives others maximum freedom to do what they want with your work and is recommended for maximum dissemination and use of licensed material.
Users are free to:
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New icon for the 2030 Agenda’s most important commitment: to Leave no one behind
Today, world leaders are gathering in New York for the high-level meeting on the 2030 Agenda, known as the SDG Summit. Its aim is to accelerate progress with the Global Goals for Sustainable Development. On the same day, a brand-new icon is launched by Forum Syd and CONCORD Sweden visualising the agenda’s most important commitment – to Leave No One Behind.
By designing an icon for the agenda’s main commitment on inclusion, the initiators aim to attract to attention and enhance progress for global sustainable development.
The icon was created through a collaboration between two Swedish civil society platform organisations, CONCORD Sweden and Forum Syd and the communications group The New Division. The New Division created the well-known design for the 17 Global Goals that provided a visual language to facilitate communication and increase awareness of the 2030 Agenda.
– The Global Goals are essential in every aspect of the UN and it is very encouraging that many governments and corporations are drafting action plans based on the 17 goals. As the awareness of the agenda increases, it is important to remember that it is about people’s lives, which is the agenda’s driving force. Our icon reinforces this human commitment and reminds us that we must not forget anyone, that everyone must have a voice in development, says Jakob Trollbäck, CEO of The New Division.
CONCORD Sweden, with its member organisations, aim to increase awareness of the 2030 Agenda’s cornerstone – that all policies and all programs need to ensure that those facing discrimination are prioritised.
– The icon demonstrate inclusion and that the Global Goals are about people. It has a simple and clean design that does not exclude or discriminate. We all have a head and a heart. But we are also different, and the colours symbolise those differences. The round wheel stands for unity and that we all need to be involved to achieve change. We all have the same rights, says Sofia Svarfvar, the project lead and Policy Coordinator at CONCORD Sweden.
To Leave No One Behind means that any progress made shall include groups that are currently disadvantaged, marginalized and discriminated against in society.
– By designing an icon for the commitment to Leave No One Behind, we want to emphasize the importance of working towards equality at different levels of society – from the local to the global. The commitment is about making active and strategic choices to reach groups in communities that are discriminated against and are disadvantaged due to structural inequalities in our societies, says Micah Grzywnowicz, International Advocacy Advisor for RFSL and currently at the UN Headquarters in New York.
The world has just over ten years to reach the 17 Sustainable Development Goals that were agreed upon in 2015. But several of the goals are further within reach than others. For some, development is even reversing. The number of people living in hunger is in many parts of the world increasing and so is also the economic inequality gap. The opportunities for children and young people to access good quality education are not given sufficient resources. We also see a global setback for the work to break structural barriers to equality.
At the New York SDG Summit, world leaders will reaffirm their commitment to the 2030 Agenda with a political declaration. Countries are to re-commit to focus on those living in poverty and marginalization both in action and in policies. Each country should come to the SDG Summit with concrete commitments to speed up the implementation.
– We urge world leaders to accelerate progress with the Global Goals. It is time to prioritise the agendas most important commitment to Leave No One Behind, says Anna Stenvinkel, Secretary General at Forum Syd.
The project is funded by Sida (Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency).
The following people are reporting live from New York during the SDG Summit this week, make sure to follow them on social media:
Sara Österlund, Senior Advisor SRHR, RFSU
Micah Grzywnowicz, International Advocacy Advisor, RFSL
Clara Helgesson, Policy Advisor, Act Svenska kyrkan
Jakob Trollbäck, Founder and CEO, The New Division
Christina Wassholm, Communications Manager, CONCORD Sverige, phone: +4670-405 32 28
Calle Strand, Communications Manager, The New Division, phone: +46739-85 53 53