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Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate  United States Province

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“Achieving Social Protection for All”: UN World Day of Social Justice

February 15th, 2011

“Social justice is more than an ethical imperative, it is a foundation for national stability and global prosperity. Equal opportunity, solidarity and respect for human rights — these are essential to unlocking the full productive potential of nations and peoples..”

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

Message for the 2011 World Day of Social Justice

20 February 2011

In November 2007, the United Nations General Assembly unanimously adopted resolution 62/10 proclaiming 20 February as the World Day of Social Justice. The resolution calls on Member States to devote the day to the promotion of concrete activities in accordance with the objectives and goals of the World Summit for Social Development which was held in Copenhagen in 1995.

The pursuit of social justice for all is at the heart of the United Nations’ mission to promote development and human dignity. It is based on the principles of fairness, equality, respect for diversity, access to social protection, and the application of human rights in all spheres of life. For a large portion of the world’s people, however, social justice remains, as UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has noted, an “elusive dream”.

Presently, 80% of the global population does not enjoy a set of social guarantees that allow them to deal with life’s risks. Ensuring basic social protection for these people, many of whom are struggling just to survive, is a necessity. The notion of a Social Protection Floor is very clear: No one should live below a certain income level and everyone should be able to access at least basic health services, primary education, housing, water and sanitation and other essential services. The United Nations Social Protection Floor Initiative was launched in 2009 as a mechanism to accelerate the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals and also as an important factor in combating poverty, reducing inequalities and building social inclusion.

…from UN DPI&NGO Relations

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