Saturday, September 19, 2015

Who’s developing who? Open letter to UN

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Hi Nikhil,

With one week to go before the UN Summit in New York to formally sign the United Nation's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), it's more important than ever to let them know that they won't end global poverty by 2030, because they can't.

Global leaders and institutions have prioritised economic growth at all costs and a few technical fixes like mosquito nets for decades, but today a full 60% of humanity are impoverished - the environment is being destroyed, and only the rich are getting richer.

To tell the UN that their plans do not represent the best interests of the world's majority we need to ramp up our efforts while they are under the media spotlight – spreading the word as far and wide as possible to demand other ways of thinking beyond business as usual.

Let the UN know we want answers by joining Naomi Klein, Noam Chomsky and Anuradha Mittal in signing an open letter to the UN and global decision makers before 20th September, which will be published shortly before the summit.

If enough of us sign this letter, our powerful words will be read by Heads of State and be heard and retold by the world's media – forcing our leaders to address the real issues of income inequality and endless material growth.

Everyone loves the idea of a world without poverty, but what the UN is proposing for the next 15 years with their Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) can't work. We know this because between 1990 and 2010 global GDP increased by 217%, but the number of people living in hunger and poverty actually increased.

It is possible to overcome poverty in a way that respects the Earth and helps tackle climate change. The planet is abundant and its people infinitely resourceful. In order to do so, however, we must be prepared to challenge the logic of endless growth, greed and destruction that defines neoliberal capitalism.

It is a time for a new global system, based on social justice and harmony with the natural world. As they currently stand, the SDGs simply distract us from making plans that will truly address the scale of the challenges we face.

Join us in signing this letter as a community before 20th September, so that together with international experts on development; our voices will be heard at the heart of the UN. Tell world leaders we want answers to some BIG questions:

  1. How is poverty created?
  2. Why is growth the only answer?
  3. Who's developing who?


/The Rules team

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