Social Watch E-Newsletter - Issue 294 - April 14, 2017

Issue 294 - April 14, 2017

European CSOs demand a tax on financial transactions


Nearly 7,000 civil society organizations and trade unions have signed a letter to their respective heads of state and government calling for redoubling efforts to implement a Financial Transaction Tax (FTT), also known as the 'Robin Hood tax'. The petition was submitted on the occasion of the European summit held in Rome to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome.
CSOs point out that such a tax on financial transactions would entail a minimum income of € 20 billion a year, and that revenue should be used to meet social needs such as financing global public goods such as health, education and the fight against poverty and climate change. In addition, this measure would restore the stability of markets, the prevention of future crises such as the one that shook Europe and the world in 2007-2008. Read more



The budget is a first step to better the lives of women in Canada


Men and women are different. That should not be news, but today it is. The government released the first federal budget that includes a look at the differences between men and women. Differences like the fact that women are twice as likely to work part-time, do more hours of unpaid care work, are less likely to qualify for Employment Insurance and are more likely to be the victim of a violent crime. 
For public spending to be effective, we need policies and programs that respond to those differences. More targeted policy is more effective policy. Otherwise we could just divide up the budget by 37 million Canadians and send everyone a cheque. Read more



Closing the Gender Gap


Almost 22 years have passed since the Fourth World Conference on Women was held in Beijing, marking a turning point for women's rights activists around the world. For many, the approved Declaration and Platform for Action represented a moment of vindication for the rights, living experiences, and human dignity of women everywhere. But the promises made in Beijing regarding the indivisibility of human rights, gender equality, and the empowerment of women and girls were not fulfilled, and it is in the socioeconomic field where this deficit strikes one of its hardest blows. 
"The economic system deepens existing inequalities and power disparities" argue Barbara Adams and Karen Judd in this report on women empowerment. Austerity measures taken against vital services–such as childcare, transportation, health, education, and other social services–affect women in particular, exacerbating the differences imposed by a gendered division of labor and relegating women's role in the formal economy. Read more



Webinar: Global Policy Tools to Accelerate Effective Action at Scale on the SDGs


The Sustainable Development Goals embody the world's greatest aspirations for human health, education, equality, the economy, and the environment. 
Focusing on a sample of SDGs critical to women's economic empowerment (SDGs 1, 5, and 8), this webinar will discuss how data can support national policies and successful implementation to advance the SDGs. This webinar will provide an overview of the ways globally comparative policy data, alongside outcome and implementation data, can be used to transparently and effectively monitor countries' progress. Read more.



Invitation to contribute to the 2017 report


Social Watch will again join forces with other NGOs and networks to publish in 2017 a new "Spotlight report" (as opposed to "shadow report") on sustainable development.
This report will be launched next July during the meeting of the High Level Political Forum of the United Nations that will review at ministerial level the Agenda 2030 and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals.
Almost two years after the adoption of this ambitious agenda, the 2017 report will look at how it is implemented. The Guidelines for the Social Watch national reports 2017 are available in English, French and Spanish. 



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