SOCIAL JUSTICE: PRINCIPLE AND OBJECTIVE OF SOCIAL TRANSFORMATION
Social protection, social security, social commons, poverty reduction, basic income … many proposals have been put on the agenda in recent decades, throughout the world, for inclusion and to improve people’s living conditions. Whichever solution we choose, for progressive social movements, the goal must be the universal application, for all, of social rights: health, food, education, housing, decent work, social protection throughout the lifetime. In other words, a society and a policy that puts social justice as one of its central axes, as a constituent element of the pact between citizens and between citizens and the state. As a moral, ethical, political and legal basis to regulate the production and distribution of wealth, in a manner consistent with the universal principles and values of social and environmental justice. Lees verder
On 14 December, the United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution on “Global health and foreign policy: strengthening health system resilience through affordable health care for all”, A/RES/75/130. The resolution was adopted by vote, 181-1-0, in contrast to previous resolutions on the topic adopted yearly by consensus based on proposals by the core group of the Global Health and Foreign Policy Initiative.
The draft resolution A/75/L.41 was presented by Brazil, Equatorial Guinea, Fiji, France, Indonesia, Mali, Mongolia, Norway, Senegal, Singapore, South Africa, Thailand and Viet Nam. Informal consultations were led by Indonesia.
The resolution reflects consensus on a number of issues. One core issue is the need for continued leadership, multilateral commitment and collaboration to address the COVID-19 pandemic. The resolution also calls for urgent support to fund and close the funding gap for the Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator and its mechanisms, such as the COVID-19 Vaccine Global Access (COVAX) Facility, and to support equitable distribution of diagnostics, therapeutics and vaccines, and further explore innovative financing mechanisms aimed at ensuring continuity and strengthening of essential health services. The resolution also notes the need for all States parties to fully implement and comply with the International Health Regulations (2005) which requires adequate capacity of all countries to prevent, detect, assess, notify and respond to public health threats, and support research and development, to prevent and control emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases that pose a risk to global public health. It also calls upon Member States to strengthen the resilience of their health systems as an integral part of their preparedness for health emergencies. Lees verder
This inclusive approach integrates a gender lens and gives voice from multiple vantage points to various actors, from civil society to firms doing business in Africa. Building on established measures of illicit financial flows, new insights are provided on country estimates of export misinvoicing on the continent and specific characteristics of mineral commodities are highlighted.
Some of the motivations and root causes of illicit financial flows are also underscored in the report.
The immediate introduction of a Temporary Basic Income for the world’s poorest people could slow the current surge in COVID-19 cases by enabling nearly three billion people to stay at home, according to a United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) report released today.
The report concludes that the measure is feasible and urgently needed, with the pandemic now spreading at a rate of more than 1.5 million new cases per week, particularly in developing countries, where seven out of ten workers make a living through informal markets and cannot earn money if they are at home.
The Special Rapporteur’s Philippe Alston most recent and last report on extreme poverty and human rights deserves reading: ‘Rather than resolving to address the inadequacy of their public health and social protection systems in response to the pandemic, many governments have seen COVID-19 as a passing challenge to be endured, ignoring the indispensability of large-scale economic and social restructuring. Others have taken it as an opportunity to undermine or restrict human rights. And rather than acknowledging how badly efforts to “end poverty” have been faring, and how relentlessly the pandemic has exposed that fact, most actors are doubling down on existing approaches that are clearly failing.’
It criticizes the World Bank statistics, promotes universal social protection, demands to update the SDGs and to find solutions for the debt and tax problems…
A new report from Eurodad’s team working on ending debt crises warns that rapidly rising public debt is pitting the rights of creditors against those of the world’s poorest people – in particular women and girls. As the cost of debt rises and countries devote up to 40% of revenue to paying off external debt, public services are feeling the effect of austerity-driven cuts. Under international human rights law, states have a duty to promote social progress and better standards of living, including by allocating sufficient resources to public service provision. Yet people living in some of the world’s most impoverished countries are seeing their rights eroded on a daily basis because there is no fair international system addressing the growing debt crisis.
This report unpacks States’ human rights obligations in the context of the increasing private sector involvement in healthcare, particularly health financing and provision. It presents a preliminary human rights impact assessment framework for evaluating the consequences of private actor activity on the right to health.
The report defines and explains the different forms of private involvement in the provision of health goods and services and financing. It analyses the different State obligations under the right to health, setting out general standards and applying them to situations of private involvement. The report also establishes the aspects of accountability that States need to put in place for the enjoyment of the right to health, including regulation, transparency, participation, monitoring, review and remedies.
The report was co-published by the Global Initiative for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (GI-ESCR), the Initiative for Social and Economic Rights (ISER) and the University of Essex Human Rights Centre Clinic. It forms part of the critical scrutiny of the increasing privatisation of services, including education, health and water. Various organisations, including GI-ESCR and ISER, have been part of this work over the last years, which led the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights to issue a resolution on privatisation in education and health in May 2019.