Sunday, February 19, 2012

New Era of Social Justice? It's Up To Us

“We must commit to a new era of social justice.” Juan Somavia, director general of the International Labor Organization, declared in a message this month marking February 20 as the World Day of Social Justice.

“The world has choices,” Somavia concluded. “We can continue to apply policies which produced the present crisis and wait for at least 88 years to eradicate extreme poverty at the present rate. Or we can begin to conceive and realize a vision of society and of growth based on the dignity of human beings capable of delivering economic efficiency, sustainability and decent work for all in a new era of social justice.”

While acknowledging the many problems in the global and national economies, Somavia sees hope in a positive trend:

“The motifs of injustice and indignity are woven into the protests on streets, squares, blogs and tweets, and in less public expressions. The root causes may differ. But there is a widespread feeling that too many people, economies and societies have been on a rigged course leaving them on the losing end. “

On the negative side, he cited these statistics:

-- one out of three workers in the world -- some 1.1 billion – are either unemployed or living below the US$2 a day poverty line
-- 75 million youth are unemployed and nearly three times as likely as adults to be jobless
-- half of total employment is some form of vulnerable employment where women are worse affected

The World Day of Social Justice is a relative newcomer on the UN list of annual observances, having been established by the UN General Assembly in 2007.

The full text od Somavia’s message can be found at


Unknown said...

We all hope a world of justice. We may do it by ourselves. Hope everything goes well.

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