‘For nearly six decades Amnesty International members around the world have been holding governments to account for their violations of basic human rights. What began in 1961 as a campaign to free Prisoners of Conscience is now a global movement that works to protect people from a broad range of human rights abuses in order to create a safer, more just world for us all. A key priority now is to hold governments to account for their inaction over the climate emergency.
The need to put people and their human rights at the centre of the climate debate is increasingly urgent. Whether it is floods, drought, rising sea levels or burning rainforest, the climate crisis threatens rights across the board: the right to food and water, health, housing and homes, livelihoods, culture and development and, of course, the right to life itself. It impacts upon each and every one of us and governments’ collective failure to act is perhaps the greatest violation of human rights we have known.
For years, Amnesty has sought accountability for environmental disasters: oil spills in the Niger Delta and gas leaks in Bhopal for example. Poor countries have borne the brunt of it, but extreme weather disasters are now affecting us all and governments can no longer afford an ‘out of sight, out of mind’ mentality. Those who fail to act must be held to account.
We are all in this together; protecting human rights and protecting the planet are two sides of the same fight. Young people are leading the way – it is their futures that hang in the balance – but we all created this crisis and we can all do something about it. Solutions are known. Governments can be held to account. We can make change happen.’
— Liza Lashman- Swindon Amnesty.
Swindon Amnesty International Group meets on the second Thursday of the month at the Friends Meeting House, 79 Eascott Hill SN1 3JF. They are on Facebook and send out information / newsletters via email.