The Third Committee of the General Assembly, the Social, Humanitarian, and Cultural Committee, addresses a wide range of cultural and human rights issues that affect people across the globe.
Topic 1 - Domestic Worker Rights
As a sub category of women’s rights, SOCHUM has chosen to tackle the issue of domestic workers that live with families abroad and manage their household affairs. They are often overworked, clocking more than 14 hours per day. This is not only a violation of regular work hour code, but their living conditions are also subpar, as the workers typically live in a small closet or washroom. The domestic workers crisis has even been deemed by some as a modern form of slavery. Regions reaching from Southeast Asia to parts of Europe are facing these issues, and typically women from a less developed part of these overarching regions move to a more developed country for work to provide for their families back home. Unfortunately, the harsh work conditions and exploitation by their host family is far from humane. It has been considered a form of forced labor and considering its prevalence around the world, SOCHUM sets out to create concrete regulations to protect these workers’ rights.
Topic 2 - Tolerance of Cultural Diversity
A widely debated topic under the SOCHUM jurisdiction is cultural diversity, which encompasses many things, including right to food, clothing, language and tradition to expression of religious beliefs. SOCHUM has chosen to focus on the extent to which this freedom of expression can be preserved, tolerated and protected in multicultural societies considering today’s scale of globalization. What is the line between secularism and expression of certain religious beliefs, such as the hijab and other religious symbols being banned in France? What are the most effective ways to contain hate speech and increase overall tolerance to those who are different than us? This is an issue prevalent all across the world at so many different levels of society, and therefore the topic of tolerance needs to be discussed in an international platform.