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2011 was an immensely busy year as we geared up for our trade justice work in 2012. Here’s a run down of some of the activities the organisation was involved in.
- We ran a Sock Puppet photo competition from 27th February – 11th March to highlight the importance of trade justice for cotton farmers. We held several interactive, participatory workshops across the country. The workshops explored unjust trade practices, how they impact on developing countries and how you can act to bring about change. We were in Tralee, Galway and Dublin.
- During the months of August and September this year we ran an EU wide e-action targeting the European Commission’s Public Consultation on the topic of Trade and Development. The e-action highlighted concerns on the issue of trade and raw materials, and called on the EU to develop a trade policy that enables developing countries to benefit from their natural resources, and respects environmental, human rights and labour standards. Over 900 people, from 30 countries across 6 continents, including Zambia, the Philippines, Ecuador, Kenya, Bosnia and Herzegovina, as well as Ireland, Britain, France and Germany, emailed the European Commission. They stated their concern that Europe’s current trade policy is disastrous for development, people living in poverty, and for the environment.
- With an election afoot, we realised that many prospective TDs could be turning up at your door, hanging out at your local shop or train station looking for your vote in the coming days. This was a great chance to raise development and trade justice with them as an issue you care about. We provided information about how the public can raise their awareness of global justice issues, and send a message back to party HQ that they should take a stand on development and trade justice issues.
- Back in the spring and summer of 2009, we asked you to pay attention to the June 2009 European elections, and to ask your prospective MEPs to speak out on trade justice for developing countries. Many of you met with, spoke to, or corresponded with your MEP candidates and raised concerns regarding EU trade policy with them. The campaign was a great success and example of people power, with a total of 6 of all 12 (i.e. 50%) elected MEPs, across all the political parties, signing up to our trade justice pledge.