A blog by the Franciscan Sisters of Perpetual Adoration about justice and peace issues

“We pledge ourselves to liberate all our people from the continued bondage of poverty, deprivation…” Nelson Mandela
 
Dear All – It is very good to be back after travelling to Italy for an International meeting on Human Rights and to France for an International Citizens Hearing on the rights of people in asylum in foreign countries. Both meetings were very enriching and left me full of ideas and the hope that comes from sharing in the struggle. It is amazing to think of the connections the FSPA community can bring to the world from La Crosse, to Chicago, to Bogota, to Paris – connections for transforming structures and systems continue to bloom so much further then we can initially see or know – thank you so much for all of the support.
 
This week I wanted to follow up a little bit on a presentation that was given on Free Trade Agreements by another 8th Day staff member Katie Varatta. She gave a presentation this past weekend in La Crosse and mentioned that some folks were curious about strategies or ways to oppose the Free Trade Model.
 
Most of us know free trade through the NAFTA agreement signed into treaty law in 1994 between the U.S., Canada, and Mexico – former President Clinton heralded NAFTA as a way to “raise all boats.” In the past fourteen years however many of us have seen our communities diminished as many small business and family farms were lost to the broad economic consequences of the Free Trade Model.
 
The current agreement up for consideration is the Colombia Free Trade Agreement – the complexity of the human rights situation in Colombia is too much to go into in this sort email. But I am attaching an article that gives a good quick synopsis about why it is important to oppose this particular agreement with Colombia as well as the larger model of “free trade” that has been so destructive to communities and in particular poor communities.
 
It is a very good time to be contacting both your State Representatives and Senators and asking how they plan to vote on the Colombian Free Trade Agreement and what is their stance on the Free Trade Model – public pressure before this hits the floor for a vote will be key to helping to counter the strong push from the White House to pass this measure. It is wonderful to be back home and I hope this finds everyone very well! Much Peace Liz
 
http://www.atlanticfreepress.com/content/view/5381/81/

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Comments on: "“We pledge oursleves to liberate all our people from the continued bondage of poverty…”" (2)

  1. Sarah said:

    I think the question was more about things to do in every day life not just in advocacy. Are there other actions we can do that take a stand against free trade the way it is now? The way we buy our clothes? Stock? Interactions with unions? Interactions with GATE? Creative ideas?

  2. theresa keller said:

    Free trade is certainly a complex area to tackle but the evidence of it creating significant groups of poor is overwhelming. Certainly opposing it polically is needed. Alternatives have also become very complex such as Fair Trade, Cooperatives and microfinancing. Policy intervention is needed and it is great to hear the Sisters learning the policy part. As I say to my mother and sisters “you go you Grey Ladies” and tell those politicans to do the right thing.

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