World Day of Social Justice is annually observed on February 20 to inspire people to see how social justice affects wellbeing and poverty eradication.
It also highlights the importance of achieving employment, sustainability, gender equality and social integration.
As the United Nations (UN) webpage announces, this year’s commemoration supports efforts by the international community to search for solutions to achieve sustainable development, poverty eradication, the promotion of full employment and decent work, universal social protection, gender equality and access to social well-being and justice for each and every one.
This day serves as a worldwide occasion to speak up against social injustice and inequalities and to challenge and fight barriers of race, gender, religion, origin etc.
Read more to learn this day’s short history and this year’s theme: A Call for Social Justice in the Digital Economy, and you will have a chance to learn ways of celebrating this day by advancing social justice in your respective societies.
26 years ago, in 1995, the World Summit for Social Development was held in Copenhagen, Denmark and culminated in the Copenhagen Declaration and Programme of Action.
During this event, more than 100 political leaders agreed to battle against poverty and ensure full employment for stable communities.
A decade later, in 2005, UN member states reviewed the Declaration of Copenhagen and Programme of Action for Social Development in New York, U.S.A.
In November, 2007, the UN General Assembly declared 20 February as the annual World Day of Social Justice. This day was first marked in 2009.
According to UN, its General Assembly recognizes that social development and social justice are indispensable for the achievement and maintenance of peace and security within and among nations and that, in turn, social development and social justice cannot be attained in the absence of peace and security, or in the absence of respect for all human rights and fundamental freedoms.
It further recognises that globalisation and interdependence are opening new opportunities through trade, investment and capital flows and advances in technology, including information technology.
This can be seen as an aid for the growth of the world economy and the development and improvement of living standards around the world, while at the same time there remain serious challenges, including serious financial crises, insecurity, poverty, exclusion and inequality within and among societies, and considerable obstacles to further integration and full participation in the global economy for developing countries, as well as some countries with economies in transition.
2021 Theme: A Call for Social Justice in the Digital Economy
The need for a social compass to fair globalization stands in the centre of the 2021 theme: A call for Social Justice in the Digital Economy.
It is widely known that the digital economy is transforming the world of work for the better, on many levels.
On the other hand, it is also important to take a lot at the challenges and difficulties it has brought, such as; risks and inequalities of workers engaged in location-based platforms, unfair competition for the traditional businesses, and the amount of funding required to continuously adapt to digital transformations, with a higher emphasis for small and medium enterprises.
The promotion of national, regional, and international multi-stakeholder policy dialogue and coordination is also vital to ensure regulatory certainty and the applicability of universal labour standards, given the diversity of responses by countries and platform companies.
Unite in Advancing Social Justice
Social justice is a key component if we want to live in a peaceful, safe and prosperous world. All of us can promote social justice by supporting and fighting for women’s rights, the rights of migrants, or indigenous people, and any other marginalized group in your local community.
We can strengthen social justice if we engage with what we can to eliminate barriers that people encounter because of their ethnicity, religion, culture, age, gender or race.
You can make your voice heard by volunteering, or participating in demonstrations and protests, as a great chance to express your activism and will for achieving social justice.
Also, do not forget the power that social media carries these days. From becoming a member of a group to sharing experiences, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are important tools for spreading your messages and contributing to awareness-raising, while serving as an easy tool of communicating, no matter the distance or barriers.
Social justice seems impossible without fully respecting human rights. For more on this correlation, we will take you to another piece Recover Better: Time to Stand Up for Human Rights.
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