Campaigning works! How you’ve helped us change the world
1992: Fairtrade CAFOD co-founded the Fairtrade Foundation, which seeks to transform trade in favour of the poor and disadvantaged. Because so many dedicated supporters run parish stalls, fair trade coffee mornings, and show off their label in Fairtrade Fortnight there are now over 3,000 fair trade products available in the UK and over 450 Fairtrade Catholic parishes. More than 7.5 million people – workers and their families - in 58 developing countries now benefit from the international fairtrade system.
Standing in solidarity with thousands of campaigners around the world, CAFOD campaigners sent 64,000 postcards to the Ministry of Defence, calling for a worldwide ban of landmines. In 1999, 40 governments ratified the Ottawa Treaty, which bans the manufacture, trade and use of anti-personnel landmines. A whopping 144 countries have now signed up to the treaty. 1994:Landmine Action
1997: Workers’ Rights CAFOD campaigners pushed for a better deal for garment and shoe workers by sending cards to their favourite high-street shops and telling shoppers how their clothes are made. Many High Street stores and companies – from Marks & Spencer to Levi Strauss – signed up to the Ethical Trading Initiative to ensure their workers, wherever they are based, get good working conditions and fair pay.
2000: Jubilee 2000 420,000 CAFOD supporters signed the Jubilee 2000 petition, calling for an end to the crippling debt facing many of the world’s poorest countries. They were also among 70,000 people who formed a giant human chain around the G8 in Birmingham, 1998. Faced with this pressure, world leaders acted, cancelling $110 billion of debt, equivalent to 2000 years of CAFOD’s income! 420,000 CAFOD supporters signed the Jubilee 2000 petition, calling for an end to the crippling debt facing many of the world’s poorest countries. They were also among 70,000 people who formed a giant human chain around the G8 in Birmingham, 1998. Faced with this pressure, world leaders acted, cancelling $110 billion of debt, equivalent to 2000 years of CAFOD’s income!
2004 Clean up your computer Following calls from CAFOD supporters to respect workers' rights, several leading electronics companies – including Microsoft, Intel, HP and IBM - introduced industry standards and took action to improve conditions along their supply chain, tackling issues like discrimination, dangerous working conditions and excessive overtime.
2005 Make Poverty History Over 700 parishes were represented in Edinburgh, as a quarter of a million rallied to make poverty history. Globally, 31 million people united in the Global Call to Action against Poverty. As a result, world leaders pledged to increase aid spending by up to $50 billion and the G8 agreed to cancel some of the remaining debt owed by poor countries to international institutions like the World Bank.
2006: Fighting for trade justice In 2006, following demands from CAFOD supporters (as part of The Trade Justice Movement) to ensure UK companies act more responsibly, the Companies Act came into being - the biggest shake-up of UK company law for 150 years. It offered an unprecedented opportunity to make laws to ensure big British businesses don’t put profit ahead of people and the environment.
2006-2007: Unearth Justice 50,000 CAFOD campaigners used consumer pressure on major UK jewellery retailers, asking them to sign up to a set of golden rules to end the sale of dirty gold. Parishioners in England and Wales created gold petition chains, which were handed into local stores of Argos and Ernest Jones, championing the rights of those affected by mining. As a result, 7 major UK jewellery retailers signed up to the rules, along with 69 more internationally, thanks to the No Dirty Gold campaign in the USA.
2008: UK Climate Change Act We lobbied our MPs for three key changes to the UK Climate Change Act– annual checkpoints, more ambitious emission cuts, and the inclusion of emissions from shipping and aviation - and we got them all. As a result, the UK became the first country in the world to make emissions cuts a legal requirement.
2009: Climate Justice Over 60,000 CAFOD supporters took action in their parishes and pews, taking personal steps to live more simply and sustainably, and also calling for a fair, ambitious and legally binding global deal on climate change from our world leaders. Global pressure from campaigners drew world leaders to the talks for the first time ever. The talks ended in stalemate but the pressure for ambitious action continues to mount.
2010: Dropping Haiti’s Debt In response to a global outcry, US$748 million of Haiti’s international debt was cancelled. Thanks to you, millions of pounds of former debt was instead used to help Haitians recover and rebuild from the earthquake. Pressure on world leaders also led to a fund being established so that other poor countries can now access debt relief following a disaster.
2011: UK Bribery Act CAFOD campaigners lobbied MPs to ensure the Bribery Act came into force, despite delays and big business pressure. UK companies now face prosecution if employees or others acting on their behalf are found to have engaged in bribery anywhere in the world: a major step forward in the fight against corruption.
2011: Don’t Drop the Ball More than 13,000 CAFOD supporters called on the UK government to champion a Green Climate Fund at climate change talks in Durban. The Fund has now been set up – we need to keep up the pressure to make sure this money gives long-term support to the communities that need it most.
2012: Thirst for change CAFOD campaigners flooded Downing Street with over 60,000 actions, calling for urgent action on sanitation. Four months into the campaign, the government announced increased support in order to improve access to clean water and safe sanitation for over 60 million people- the equivalent of the entire UK population- over the next three years.
2013: Open up the books It’s been over 10 years in the making, but in June 2013 we welcomed new transparency legislation to help people in developing countries. Finally it will be possible to find out about who benefits from the activities of multi-national oil, gas and mining companies in local communities.
2013: Enough Food for Everyone IF This year, we joined up with over 200 charities to make 2013 the beginning of the end to global hunger. The UK kept its historic commitment to life saving aid, pledging to spend 0.7 per cent of national income on international development aid, as agreed over 40 years ago at the UN.
In our photos... Annie Bungaroth Sebastian Gordon Zarina Holmes Sebastian Gordon Sean Sprague CAFOD Laura Storr Simon Rawles Panos Katy Harris Marcus Perkins/ Tearfund OXFAM Mike Noyes Marcella Haddad Cartoons by Claud Mba Geoff Crawford CAFOD
Thank you! And don’t stop campaigning! cafod.org.uk/takeaction