Unprecedented global coalition calls for a just recovery from Covid-19

Katie Hill - Editor-in-Chief, My Green Pod

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Published: 26 March 2020

This Article was Written by: Katie Hill - My Green Pod

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Over 300 organisations across the globe are demanding that governments apply five core principles to tackle the Covid-19 crisis.

The principles are designed to ensure that people and the environment are protected by government actions and pave the way for a just recovery.

Choices for people and planet

The demands are co-signed by Indigenous Peoples organisations, labour groups and unions, feminist organisations, development agencies, climate and environmental NGOs, health, youth and religious bodies and local activist groups from every continent.

The demands are being delivered to key global decision-makers, including Christine Lagarde at the European Central Bank (ECB), as well as being heavily promoted online.

‘The Covid-19 pandemic demands swift and unprecedented action from national governments and the international community. Choices being made right now will shape our society for years, if not decades to come. The choices must put people first, and must also accelerate our action against the climate crisis.’

MAY BOEVE
Executive Director of 350.org

Principles for a just recovery

The principles outlined in the demands are:

  • That health of all people is the top priority
  • Economic relief targets people directly
  • Assistance goes to workers and communities; not executives
  • Stimulus creates resilience for future crises, particularly climate
  • The response builds solidarity and community and does not empower authoritarians

An interconnected approach

Policy-makers at all levels are grappling with how to confront the Covid-19 pandemic and its economic impacts.

The organisations signing on to the statement will be undertaking campaigns in their own national and local spheres, as well as putting pressure on international decision-makers.

‘This virus proves how interconnected we are. The solutions we come up with now must ensure that no one is left behind – we need a truly interconnected global approach which first and foremost invests in the safety and health of all people, but which does not lose sight of the necessary project of transitioning our economies away from coal, oil and gas at the same time.’

BRETT FLEISHMAN
Head of 350.org finance campaigns

Relief and long-term recovery

The types of response envisioned by the signatories include scaled-up investment in healthcare systems, direct cash payments and transfers to people, improved working conditions and rights, and ‘green’ strings – incentives to take climate action – in any stimulus funding provided to corporations and businesses.

As the debate in US Congress has shown, this is an opportunity to ensure both immediate relief and long-term recovery that saves lives. It’s time for real leadership, and to chart a bold path forward to a liveable future for all.

‘We demand a stimulus package that helps boost the creation of millions of jobs, sustains families, responds to systemic inequity, and directly invests in Black, Indigenous, and communities of colour facing economic insecurity.

‘The climate crisis will not wait. Now is the time to act boldly, focused on people and the planet. We must make a downpayment on a regenerative economy while preventing future crises.’

TAMARA TOLES O’LAUGHLIN
350.org North America Director

Responding to crises

From Canada to Korea, parliaments, congresses and central banks across the globe are considering how they respond.

International financial institutions like the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund will also have a key role to play, and several waves of response measures are expected.

‘There is a lot of fear in this moment. The only way to fight this virus is the same as what we must do to confront the climate crisis – act as one united global community that puts the needs of people first. From their homes, balconies and gardens people will make their demands heard.’

MAY BOEVE
Executive Director of 350.org

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