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Will you be a delegate at the UUA General Assembly?

Support an Action of Immediate Witness:

"Urge Government Participation in World Conference Against Racism"

  We UUs will be at the Racism Conference in South Africa!

URGENT

Sign the Action of Immediate Witness at the
UU-UNO display table at GA
by 4.30 p.m. Friday, June 22
Here it is!

 
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ACTION OF IMMEDIATE WITNESS

Urge Government Participation
in UN Racism Conference

WHEREAS our Unitarian Universalist principles call us to affirm and promote “justice, equity, and compassion in human relations” and “the goal of world community,"

WHEREAS a 1997 Unitarian Universalist General Assembly resolution stated that, “because of the impact of racism on all people, and the interconnection among oppressions, we realize we need to make both institutional and individual commitments to end racism.” [1997 GAR]

WHEREAS the United Nations has called for the World Conference Against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerances (“WCAR”), which will be held in September 2001:

(a) in order “to review the political, historical, economic, social, cultural and other factors leading to racism and racial discrimination,” [<www.un.org/WCAR/e-kit/fact1.htm> (Fact 1)]

(b) indicating that it “will be a unique and important opportunity to create a new world vision for the fight against racism and racial discrimination in the new millennium.” [Fact 1], and that

(c) “it is now necessary to look at the roots of racism and make institutional changes in order to prevent its eruption.” [Fact 1]

WHEREAS the Government of the United States of America has threatened to withdraw from the WCAR if specific forms of racial or ethnic prejudice are included in the agenda of the WCAR.

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the 2001 General Assembly of the Unitarian Universalist Association:

1) recognizing the obligation of the elected heads of their national governments as world leaders to participate in the creation of a new world vision for the fight against racism and racial discrimination, calls on the new President of the UUA to

(a) urge President Bush of the United States and Prime Minister Chretien of Canada to send delegations to the WCAR, and

(b) further urge them to affirm and support the fundamental need of all people to be respected as members of one human race with equality in worth and dignity.

2) urges the UUA Delegation and all other Unitarian Universalist delegations to the WCAR to carry to the WCAR and the NGO community gathered in simultaneous meetings at Durban, South Africa in September 2001 the working definition of Racism: “Racial or ethnic prejudice plus the systemic misuse of power to derive benefits and privileges for a dominant group,” and devote their best efforts to gaining acceptance of this broad definition of the term.

3) with the goal of transforming the racist institutions of our world, urges the Unitarian Universalist Delegations to the WCAR to actively encourage all participating governments to establish relationships with international and interfaith organizations that are working for racial and ethnic justice and for the dismantling of racism.

4) urges the Official Representative of the UUA to the United Nations to deliver this Action of Immediate Witness to Secretary General Kofi Annan of the United Nations as a statement of our intent to stand with the United Nations in its resolve to ensure the twenty-first century bends toward peace and justice for all peoples of the world.


 
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STATEMENT OF PRINCIPLE

prepared for the UUA NGO Delegation to the United Nations General Assembly Special Session on Children September 19-21, 2001

For over fifty years the Unitarian Universalist United Nations Office has promoted the work of the United Nations through communication and education among the members of the more than one thousand Unitarian Universalist congregations affiliated with the Unitarian Universalist Association in the United States and Canada. Therefore

WHEREAS we affirm the inherent worth and dignity of every person, and we recognize that every child is a person, and

WHEREAS, from time immemorial, the children of the world have depended upon the goodwill and active attention and care of their respective communities, and we recognize that today each child is a part of the global community, and

WHEREAS we affirm that the United Nations is the most effective global organization capable of reaching into and touching the daily lives of the world’s billions of children, many of whom are in need of the material sustenance, health care and education necessary to reach a constructive and fulfilling adulthood, and

WHEREAS we, as individuals and as an organization, have been inspired by and have used The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, The UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women, and The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child as guiding documents in our activities and in our aspiration toward a more just and peaceful world,

THEREFORE we support and affirm the principles outlined in the Convention on the Rights of the Child, and, especially,

We recognize that the right to education is the basis for improving the lives of all children and has proven to be the most effective way to reduce poverty, and we support efforts in developing strategies that deal with the social and economic barriers to providing education for all children.

We support the expansion of the role and resources of the Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict so that Office may more effectively address the issues of children and war.We support the expansion of the role and resources of the Special Rapporteur on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography.

We urge nations to ratify the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on Involvement of Children in Armed Conflicts, and specify the age of 18 as the minimum age for the conscription of military personnel.

We recognize the importance of listening to children relate their experiences and ideas in their own voices, and we urge the promotion of environments in which children can share their stories and realities with other people and impact the legal systems under which they live.

We urge the creation of processes for effective implementation, strategic actions, and evaluation of The Convention on the Rights of the Child.

We welcome the leaders of the world to the United Nations Special Session on Children and urge their careful attention to the futures of those whom they represent, our children in our global community.


For further information contact the UU-UNO at Uuuno2@aol.com
or call 212-986-5165


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