The Social, Humanitarian and Cultural Committee is the third General Assembly of the United Nations, tasked with a broad mandate surrounding social, humanitarian, and human rights issues from around the world. To delineate a general idea of the committee, some issues discussed within SOCHUM include, but are not limited to: human rights, global literacy, women’s rights, children’s rights, the treatment of refugees and displaced persons, international drug control, crime prevention, and the elimination of racism and discrimination. SOCHUM also works closely with many other UN bodies in order to effectually address its mandated issues.
This committee is designed for both beginners and experienced delegates alike. Position papers, although strongly recommended, are not required. However, delegates who wish to be considered for an award must submit their position papers by January 22nd, 2021, at 23:59 PST. More information about position papers can be found on page 3 of the Background Guide.
Ethical counter-terror is the adherence to human rights and international law during counter-terror actions. Terrorism poses a grave threat to public safety, and every state must do its utmost to prevent terror attacks. However, many counter-terror initiatives do not respect international conventions and disregard human rights. Commonly, state governments will overlook the right to life, freedom, and religion for terrorists, and will use torture and detention to extract information from suspected terrorists. States should look to find an equitable balance between taking all necessary steps to prevent terrorism while also maintaining human rights and being in accordance with international law.
Indigenous people across the globe experience inferior healthcare compared to non-Indigenous counterparts. Healthcare is critical in maintaining a high quality of life; nevertheless, it is ignored by state governments in regards to Indigenous societies. Indigenous people have disproportionately shorter life spans, higher child mortality, and lower quality of life in nearly every country. The respect for Indigenous traditions, remedies, and culture is starkly missing in healthcare systems. Indigenous people encounter significant barriers to healthcare access, such as—racism, geographic location, government trust, and fiscal availability. There is a pressing need to work with Indigenous communities to improve healthcare services for Indigenous individuals.
Emma-Jane Burns | Director
Emma-Jane is a Junior at York House School and is honoured to serve as Director of SOCHUM. Three years ago marked the beginning of Emma’s high school Model United Nations journey. Since then, MUN has taught her valuable lessons on responsibility, introduced her to new friends, and built her understanding of politics and international affairs. MUN has been a fond facet of Emma-Jane’s high school experience, and she wishes to offer delegates similar opportunities that she was given by previous VMUN dais teams. She hopes new delegates give MUN a whirl, and learn something new during the conference. As the conference date nears, Emma-Jane’s anticipation builds. She wishes to be able to provide a rewarding and educational MUN experience to every delegate attending SOCHUM.
Justin Jia | Chair
A rising senior attending West Point Grey Academy, Justin is overjoyed to serve as your Chair of SOCHUM at VMUN 2021! Attending his first conference in Grade 8, Justin has found the world of Model United Nations fascinating and educational to learn about international affairs. Aside from writing mediocre MUN biographies and trying to reserve seats at restaurants during MUN’s, Justin can be seen taking countless photos of the sky, going on long bike rides, and journaling. On top of the countless friendships you will make, Justin hopes that this year’s iteration of VMUN will be an amazing and rewarding experience for everyone attending. If you have any questions or concerns, do not hesitate to reach out to him! He can’t wait to see you all in the spring!
Lily Li | Assistant Director
Currently a senior attending Steveston-London Secondary, Lily is ecstatic to serve as assistant director of SOCHUM for VMUN 2021. Since her first conference in sophomore year, Lily has found joy in intense debate with other delegates while exploring various pressing issues around the globe working alongside talented, driven individuals. She is incredibly fascinated by the wide array of perspectives MUN has enabled her to experience, and she hopes to offer the same to new delegates. Outside of MUN, Lily can be found taking portraits of her friends, jamming on the saxophone, making iced coffee, or teaching English to kids. She looks forward to meeting everyone and is excited to witness fruitful debate at VMUN 2021.
Anik Nielsen | Assistant Director
A junior at St. George’s School, Anik is honoured to serve as an Assistant Director of the Social, Humanitarian and Cultural Committee at the 20th iteration of VMUN. Since embarking on his MUN journey in this very committee, he has indulged in the world of diplomacy through various committees and conferences. These experiences have been invaluable to him and have shaped who he is today by enlightening him with new perspectives, enhancing public speaking skills, and forming lasting bonds. Outside of MUN, you will most likely find Anik playing, watching, or talking about anything related to basketball. Aside from that, he enjoys travelling, music, food, politics, and other sports such as volleyball, soccer, and football. Anik eagerly awaits a memorable conference filled with spirited debate and is looking forward to meeting everyone!
You can contact the Director at firstname.lastname@example.org. Any questions regarding the committee or its debate procedures will be answered by email. Position papers must also be submitted to this address.