The NGO Liaison Unit at UNOG facilitates the participation of NGOs in consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC)
in United Nations activities taking place on the premises of the United Nations Office at Geneva. This includes organizing requisite annual and temporary accreditation.
NGOs in consultative status with ECOSOC can designate representatives to obtain grounds passes valid through 31 December of each year to access UN premises in Geneva, New York and Vienna. The application procedure at each duty station - in Geneva, New York and Vienna - is separate. Passes issued in one duty station cannot be used in another.
Each eligible NGO can request up to a maximum of 7 annual passes for its representatives in each duty station. Two of these are reserved for the President/Chief Executive Officer and the Chief Administrative Officer, who should be the same persons in all three duty stations. Once an NGO has the President/Chief Executive Officer or Chief Administrative Officer nominated and approved in a duty station, the NGO is considered accredited for that year in that duty station. Failure to nominate at least one of the two representatives will prevent approval of any request for accreditation for other NGO representatives, including accreditation to relevant sessions of UN mechanisms (sessions of the Human Rights Council for example).
A maximum of 5 grounds passes can be requested as follows: 1 for the Main representative and up to 4 for the Additional representatives. For UNOG, NGOs may choose to entrust the Main representative with the right to request temporary grounds passes.
Temporary grounds passes at UNOG can be requested for a maximum duration of 3 months, renewable once (total of 6 months). The NGO Liaison Unit reserves the right to apply limitations to the number of temporary grounds passes requested based on capacity or security constraints at the time of the request, and NGOs may be requested to provide relevant justifications.
With annual and temporary grounds passes, NGO representatives obtain access to UNOG premises. However, separate registration / accreditation procedure may be required to attend specific meetings organized at UNOG. NGOs should check with the meeting organizer if additional registration is required.
For more information concerning accreditation / grounds passes, NGOs should consult the Procedure for NGOs in consultative status with ECOSOC to request accreditation at UNOG
while using the User guide for the online accreditation of NGO representatives in the iCSO database
and the template designation letters for annual
grounds passes requests.
Requests for temporary accreditation of NGO representatives to sessions of the Human Rights Council and relevant mechanisms, such as the Universal Periodic Review Working Group, should be addressed to the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), which processes accreditation to these sessions via UNOG’s online accreditation and registration system Indico.
Before requesting such accreditation, NGOs should finalize their annual accreditation at UNOG as outlined above.
Requests to replace the NGO President in the course of the year should be addressed to the NGO Branch in DESA, New York, by filling an online form
and uploading a letter bearing the letterhead of the NGO, signed by the outgoing President designated before the United Nations.
In case of replacement of accredited NGO representatives in the course of the year, it is required that the grounds pass of the outgoing representative is returned before submitting a request for a replacement representative.
NGO representatives in possession of UNOG grounds passes represent the NGO in full by participating in UN meetings as well as engaging with UN staff, Member States and other entities on behalf of the NGO. Misrepresentation of consultative relationship could result in adverse consequences for NGOs, including suspension or withdrawal of status.
Holders of UNOG grounds passes are subject to relevant UN rules and regulations and must fully comply with the processes and directions set forth by UNOG Security and Safety Service and the NGO Liaison Unit. Sanctions may be taken in cases of misuse of the accreditation or grounds passes as well as any transgression of the rules while on UNOG premises.
For further information concerning accreditation, please consult our FAQs at www.unog.ch/ngo/faqs