What is UN Consultative Status?
UN Consultative Status for NGOs (non-governmental organizations), was established in 1945. It is granted through the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC)
Article 71 of the UN Charter
The Economic and Social Council may make suitable arrangements for consultation with non-governmental organizations which are concerned with matters within its competence. Such arrangements may be made with international organizations and, where appropriate, with national organizations after consultation with the Member of the United Nations concerned.
NGOs working on UN-relevant issues about are asked by the UN to provide advice and guidance from their grass-roots perspectives. Currently, there are about 5,000 NGOs around the world who offer this guidance.
To formalize their relationship with the UN, NGOs go through an application process which may last one to two years. The application includes creating a profile with the UN, and submitting documents that review the structure, programs, and impact the NGO has. Then, ECOSOC (the division of the UN that oversees the status), has two or more meetings including representatives from all UN countries. The countries (or Member States) review each NGO application, and ultimately decide if the NGO fits the necessary criteria.