'Women, youth and children demand development justice, end to plutocracy' - CPG : Page 2 of 3
Posted on 7 March 2014
Turkey and Brazil, people everywhere are rising up against inequality, injustice, and the lack of accountability of political authorities.
So if there is one clear message that we want our leaders to heed as we move to the negotiating stage of the post2015 agenda, it is this: we need to radically change the global political and economic system through a transformative and redistributive framework that aims to reduce inequalities of wealth, power and resources between countries, between rich and poor and between men and women.
Rhetorical normative language is not enough. Governments must make clear unequivocal commitments to a new course for the world that ensures the planet’s limited resources are used equitably and responsibly, acknowledging the historical debt of the few to the many, and our responsibility to future generations.
We need a goal to redistribute the obscene levels of wealth concentration within and between countries. Indeed, just 5% of the 46.2 trillion-dollar wealth of the world’s so-called “High Net Worth Individuals” is enough to cover the annual cost of a global social protection floor, climate change adaptation and mitigation combined. Targets can be adopted in terms of increasing the share of labor in national income; increasing progressive taxation; democratizing ownership and management of productive assets and finances, expanding solidarity-based and public forms of ownership over the means of production and distribution, strengthening diverse local economies and territorial management.
A strengthened global partnership for development that recognizes the common but differentiated responsibilities of countries is also critical in this regard. Public finance, technology transfers and capacity-building measures should be directed in support of sustainable development effort in developing countries. More importantly, the financial system needs to be fixed including the taxation of speculative flows, clamping down on tax havens, preventing tax competition, cancelling illegitimate and odious debt. The WTO, trade agreements and investment treaties should be circumscribed by human rights norms and principles rather than the other way around.
The respect, protection and fulfillment of human rights should be explicitly recognized as both the overall goal of sustainable development and the means for achieving it. All goals, targets and indicators should be aligned with relevant human rights standards. The immediate obligation to ensure at least essential levels of these rights, without discrimination or retrogression, requires ‘universal’ or ‘zero targets’ for all sectors wherever possible and strong equality benchmarking should be integral to monitoring progress. The duty to use the maximum available resources to fulfill these rights progressively requires monitoring of both the policy and fiscal and budgetary efforts of governments, alongside sustainable development outcomes.
To tackle inequality and injustice we need stricter regulatory frameworks for big business especially transnational corporations to ensure that they are fully transparent, respect human rights and are held accountable whenever they violate these rights. Corporate accountability must not rely on the goodwill and self-regulation of corporations.
Finally, if we want to harness the contribution of women, youth and civil society, the Post-2015 development framework must enhance the enabling conditions for people to claim their rights. The proliferation of new