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CWS Update May 2013

A monthly news bulletin that takes a look at development issues, provides analysis of global justice issues and keeps you updated with the work of CWS. An alternative to mainstream media sources. Past issues can be read here

May 2013

Download as PDF or read the text below

5 June  World Environment Day—”Think Eat Save” - Focus on food waste—see also  Kate Day, Why the Waste when People are Hungry? 

20 June  World Refugee Day

23 June  Refugee Sunday—  Focus on Syria.  Please help Syrian refugees.  Worship Resources available here.

7 July   Refugee Sunday—Anglican lectionary.


Bangladeshi Workers Appeal
The Bangladesh union that supports workers involved in the factory that collapsed killing 1100 people has asked CWS for help.  Amirul Haque Amin of the Bangladesh National Garment Workers Federation (NGWF) wrote to Trish Murray thanking her for messages of support and sympathy after the collapse of the Rana Plaza factory in Savar on April 24.

“I know you are very busy but please consider that NGWF have to do a lot of things,’’ said Mr Amin.  These actions include: “supporting our members-dead and injured, trying to reach the other dead and injured but the numbers are very big, ensuring that the injured get proper treatment, and making sure that the dead, injured and suffering workers get proper compensation.” 

As well they are trying to get support for workers affected by the abrupt closure of other dangerous factories by the Government in the wake of international outrage.  Mr Amin underlined the urgency of keeping up their campaign for safer working conditions for Bangladeshi garment workers.  “If we can get direct support to the victims then it will be also easier for us to do other things as well,’’ said Mr Amin.  Please donate to theBangladeshi Workers Appeal.

Syria Appeal
An estimated 8,000 people flee fighting in Syria each day.  There are now 1,557,134 refugees of which 805,000 are children.  76% live in host communities rather than refugee camps.  Please pray for Syria and give generously to the Syria Appeal.

South India: EKTA
CWS partner, EKTA has written from South India expressing their gratitude, “for the wonderful coverage of EKTA's One Billion Rising and Safe Madurai campaigns in CWS's @world magazine.  Sharing these stories spreads knowledge and awareness of the struggles that women in India face and of EKTA's efforts to challenge such issues.  We are very lucky to have CWS as a partner in striving to promote and protect women's human rights and to help them lead safe, healthy, and full lives.

“Since we presented the Safe Madurai recommendations to the authorities, they have made several visits to the main bus stand to assess existing safety deficits and solutions.  They have acknowledged many of the issues we put forward--for example, vastly inadequate lighting--and are considering ways to rectify the situation.  We look forward to reporting that all of our essential recommendations have been implemented in the near future.”  CWS is seeking $115 more to meet the $2000 needed to fund this campaign.  Can you help?

Good News Mr McCully
The Minister of Foreign Affairs announced that New Zealand is to be one of the first signatories to the new UN Arms Trade Treaty when it is opened for signatures on June 3.  The Treaty aims to stop the illicit arms trade and needs 50 signatures to come into force.

UN: French Polynesia Status
On 17 May the United Nations General Assembly voted to place French Polynesia (Maohi Nui) back on the UN list of territories to be decolonised and affirming its right to self-determination.  The French Government had successfully removed it from the list in 1947 and opposed reinstatement.  The re-inscription was supported by the Maohi Protestant Church (EPM), Pacific Conference of Churches and the World Council of Churches. 

Changing Paradigm
The power of emerging economies, climate change, growing inequalities  and a multipolar world are some of the many dynamics that are affecting people-centred development according to a discussion paper prepared for the ACT Alliance.  The ACT Alliance is asking members to reflect on the changing context in which we work, and identify how we can become an actor for real change for people living in poverty and with oppression.  They are looking for key principles  beyond the dominant growth paradigm built from exploiting natural resources.  In particular they are seeking to identify three priority areas for work.  Read the paper.  If you would like to comment on the issues raised, please send us your response.

Climate Change + Disaster
new study found that 32.4 million people were made homeless by natural disaster in 2012—almost double the number in 2011.   According to the study climate and weather hazards such as floods and storms caused 98% of displacement. Carbon dioxide has now passed the symbolic level of 400 parts per million.  CWS partners are worried about climate change, campaigning for more action, and are incorporating disaster preparedness into their work.

CWS Unpacks
CWS is grateful for help from some our skilled volunteers in unpacking archives and the main files from the Manchester Street office.  The files and other items have been stored in a warehouse since they were retrieved last year.  Finalising the insurance claim has meant the purchase of new filing cabinets and shelving. Sorting papers for archiving at the Alexander Turnbull Library is a big task.  If you live in Christchurch and can help, please contact Mandla.

Haiti: School Fundraiser
CWS is asking schools to fundraise for a new school for the children of Dauphine, Haiti.  CWS partner ICKL is helping the poor rural community to replace the old school which is falling down.  The Haitian government provides no money for schools, equipment or teachers.  ICKL will also provide a grain mill so that the farmers can fund the running of the school from the proceeds.  For more information contact CWS.


About Update
Update provides news, information and stories.  Reproduction of items is encouraged with attribution from CWS.  The current and back issues areavailable.