Friends World Committee for Consultation, (FWCC) Triennial, Jan 16-25, 2004, Auckland, New Zealand

Meet the Minimum Needs of All:  Interest Group

  Ten Friends (eight men and two women) from seven countries met and after worship considered the theme of "Meet the Minimum Needs of All", from 2.40- 4.30 pm on Jan 24, 04. Enlightened by the Spirit, they arrived at consensus to send the following minute to FWCC.

  Minute:

"Meet the Minimum Needs of All" is about the economic identity of being human. Where did the sanction for separation on this identity come from? Did the human spirit authorize it? Was it of necessity? Was it of choice? Is it necessary today?

2.9 billion people, approximately one half of the global population, live on less than $2 per day and 1.3 billion of that population live on less than $1 per day.

Given the resources and abilities of global society in the 21st century, poverty at this level represents structural violence by one segment of the global population on another, leading to 35,200 deaths per day. The associated guilt cannot be overcome through any program of consumerism.

Human minimum needs are:

        sufficient drinking water/ person/day

        nutrition of 2500 calories/person/day

        localized basic clothing and shelter

        basic primary health care

        substantive primary education of 5 years duration in practice.

  To "Meet the Minimum Needs of All" we must engage First World populations of developed and developing nations to acknowledge their 'spiritual culpability' within the 'sovereignty of choice' in creating and maintaining global poverty. They could transform their complicity, by enabling restitution and restorative justice for the global Poor through a 'people + profit' mind set for economic activities over a brief period of time.

  It is our spiritual conviction that a sanction of poverty on one half of the global population is no longer defensible.

Hence,

  1. We recommend that FWCC through Quaker United Nations Office, (QUNO), make representation to the UN, to approach the World Trade Organization, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, (who represent First World populations in developed and developing nations) to "Meet the Minimum Needs of All", (MMNA), by the year 2030.

  2. We also request FWCC, to request Quaker yearly meetings to consider how the "Minimum Needs of All" can be met, and to report back to the FWCC Triennial expected in 2007.

  Respectfully submitted for the Interest Group on MMNA,

Radh Achuthan, Observer,

Peconic Bay Monthly Meeting, NYYM,

Jan 25, 04, Auckland, New Zealand.

 

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