Peace and Justice Project

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Founder(s)Jeremy Corbyn

On 13 December 2020, Jeremy Corbyn, former Leader of the Labour Party, announced the launching of a global Peace and Justice Project to advance the causes that he championed as Labour leader:

“You don’t have to take what you’re given. You don’t have to live without power and without hope. Things can, and they will change.” Jeremy Corbyn [2]

YouTube online launch

"Things can, and they will, change"

The YouTube online launch of the Peace and Justice Project took place on Sunday 17 January 2021 (15:00 – 16:30 GMT).[3]

Following the online launch, watched by thousands of supporters, the PJP tweeted:

"Thank you so much to Scarlett Westbrook (@ScarlettOWest), Yanis Varoufakis (@YanisVaroufakis), Zarah Sultana (@zarahsultana), Len McCluskey (@LenMcCluskey), Ronnie Kasrils, Noam Chomsky and our brilliant chair Christine Blower for making our launch a success and bringing hope for the year to come.
"Things can, and they will, change."[4]

Address by Jeremy Corbyn

In his own address, produced below, Jeremy Corbyn argued against defeatism, insisting that, faced with today’s crises, social movements are already in a stronger position than they were at the time of the 2008 crisis.

Highlighting the power of demands like the Green New Deal, Corbyn called for steps to break the corporate stranglehold on mass media — and mount a frontal challenge to the neoliberal dogmas that are today wreaking such havoc across the globe:

I want to start with a huge thank you to everybody taking part today.

People have tuned in from all across the UK, communities big and small, and from countries all over the world. Our coming together across borders, backgrounds, and experiences has never been more important. That’s what we want to do with this project: unite the local, the national, and the global.

Thank you, all of you, for your endless determination to make a more peaceful and just world — for the many, not the few. It’s your hope, your commitment, your passion that powers our movement.

You, those who came before you, and those who will come after us in the struggle for peace and justice, are the motor of change in history. It may not always seem that way in the face of defeats and setbacks. But movements do transform the world.

Look at those movements that fought for liberation from slavery, the vote, equality for women, civil rights, freedom from colonialism, for the eight-hour working day, for the right to organise, for our National Health Service, for socialism.

They were scorned. They were beaten back. They often thought they had lost — and they were defeated many times.

But look who changed the world. Who do we remember? Do you remember Sylvia Pankhurst, or the Home Secretary who put her in prison for demanding votes for women? And there are so many more examples around the world.

That’s why we are all here. Because the struggle for peace and justice is needed today more than ever. Things can, and they will change — and that’s what our task is.

As we live through the second major global crisis in a dozen years, we see the scale of the task. But also, know that we have the solutions and are better organised and prepared than when the financial crisis hit in 2008.

The pandemic is intensifying the three deep, connected, and global crises we face: The climate emergency. An economy that generates inequality and insecurity faster than prosperity and freedom. And a global political order that holds back the vast majority of our planet’s people and is dangerously breaking down.

2020 was the hottest year on record. The wealth of the richest rose astronomically while the majority suffered. And a global response to the pandemic was held back by authoritarian nationalist leaders, and the drive for corporate mega profits.

But we have both the ideas and the power, when we come together, to overcome these crises and build a world of peace and justice. What our movement does today will be felt for many generations to come.

Our role in the Peace and Justice Project will be to champion those ideas, and support the movements that can turn those ideas into reality. Because if you don’t argue for your side, our opponents win by default.

Many of the ideas we need to make the 2020s better than the 2010s were developed in and around the Labour Party in recent years by outstanding thinkers. But, more importantly, by movement demands, and the skills, the knowledge, the needs, of the communities affected.

We will build on these policies, taking them further and adapting them to the post-pandemic world, alongside movements, experts, and with you. This, so that our movement can turn the dial away from conflict and inequality, and toward peace and justice.

As we launch today, we will focus on four areas of work. And we want you and the movements you’re involved in to take part.

Green New Deal

First, a Green New Deal, paid for by the wealthy and big polluters, that supports our planet and a new economy that produces good quality, unionised jobs as a standard.

Labour’s 2019 manifesto is arguably the most developed green agenda in the world, combining radical decarbonisation with an enormous good jobs program in every part of the UK. We will take it further — because that’s what the future of our planet demands. We will commission new research, thinking, and policy that can be used by movements, communities, and parties around the world to build a Global Green New Deal.

But we won’t do this to movements, we will do it with movements. So, we will convene regular meetings with climate activists, with community groups, and with trade unions representing workers.

If your organisation wants to help shape our work, and join our meetings, please get in touch with us.

And if you want to be part of the campaign we will build in the run-up to the vital COP26 meetings in Glasgow in November, please go to our website and sign up.

Economic Security

The second area of our work is economic security, with the immediate task of supporting people in the pandemic recession.

We will advance the policies that would make the effects of a recession so much less severe for millions of people. Policies that give people things they can always rely on. Publicly owned and properly funded public services. High-quality, affordable transport. Cheap bills from public providers. A huge expansion of social housing. Security of tenure for the private rented sector. Protections against fire and rehire to drive down wages and conditions. And rights at work from day one for all workers.

But the most important thing is to help people now.

So, we are asking our supporters — you — to link up locally and address this economic emergency together. That may involve working with food banks, mutual-aid groups, social organisations, or trade unions to support communities in this difficult period, whilst campaigning for a more decent and just economy.

Please go to our website and sign up. In the coming days, we will put you in touch with other supporters in your area with concrete actions you can take together to help people get through this difficult, isolated and isolating time.

International Justice

The third area of our work is international justice. I’ve spent my life campaigning for peace, justice, and human rights all over the world. We will campaign against the merchants of death in the arms trade and against war. The UK government is complicit in the world’s worst humanitarian crisis in Yemen, through its arming, training, and support for the Saudi-led coalition. We will do all we can to help bring this already six year long war to an end and support the people of Yemen who have been so brutalised.

And we will continue to be utterly committed to the support and protection of the victims of war, refugees seeking a place of safety. Peace and diplomacy is the answer to war and conflict.

But as with economic security, our most urgent priority is to address the injustices and iniquities of COVID-19.

Some rich countries have acquired enough doses for their entire populations to vaccinated nearly three times over, while nine out of ten people in poor countries will not receive a vaccine this year.

If the COVID emergency has taught us anything, it is just how connected we all are and that global problems can’t be fully addressed by local solutions. If vaccines are to end the pandemic, 60 percent of the world must be inoculated to achieve that immunity. Yet a combination of vaccine nationalism and the irrational placing of profit ahead of public health is thwarting the global solidarity and coordinated action needed to roll out coronavirus vaccines for the entire world.

There are already a number of excellent organisations working in this area, and we will add our weight and strength to them, to speed up global rollout, to reduce the costs for people around the world, and argue for a more rational system where public health comes before profit or beggar-thy-neighbour nationalism.

Please go to our website and sign up for this campaign to find out more as it develops.

And while you are there, please add your name to an incredibly important petition to the UK government that we’ve created.

It calls on the UK government to use its power in the World Trade Organization to support Indian and South African efforts to allow poorer countries to access the vaccines necessary without paying enormous markups to big pharmaceutical companies.

Please go to our website or check social media and sign the petition.

Democratising Society

The fourth area we are working on is building a truly democratic society.

Democracy is so much more than voting once every four or five years — and sometimes with the choice restricted to parties which fundamentally agree on most things.

We want to see democracy dramatically extended into our communities, our workplaces, our public institutions.

There’s a simple principle. If something has significant power over our lives, we should have some collective say over it.

One vital area — and the one this project will start with — is the media.

We want a powerful and influential media, but one that puts power and influence in the hands of the majority, not in the hands of the few. A truly free media would expose truth and challenge the powerful.

Right now, much of the media isn’t very free at all. The influence of billionaires and their interests is huge, and the power of the tech giants has mushroomed. And it might be about to get worse, with two new TV stations being set up with the backing of enormous private wealth, competing to out-Fox News each other.

The media isn’t something just like the weather that we complain about but can’t change. To advance peace and justice, we need to democratise the media so that real journalism that seeks truth and challenges power is supported over misinformation and falsehood.

The Peace and Justice Project will work with academics, experts, and journalists to develop research and policies that our movement can rally around.

I laid out some ideas in a speech to the Edinburgh TV festival in 2018. But there’s much more we can do.

We are going to start by taking on Rupert Murdoch and his plans to reenter the UK television market. Unlike his last attempt to buy out Sky, this time there’s no one stopping him. We need an urgent parliamentary commission to protect our news media from oligarchy and monopoly control.

We have started a petition for this parliamentary commission on our website. I hope you’ll go to our website and sign up to our campaign for media democracy and sign the petition.

We Are Many, They Are Few

As you can see, we have so much to do.

We might look around us now. and think things look bleak with the climate crisis, the pandemic, the continued rule of billionaires and their political playthings, and the frightening rise of the far right and renewed racism.

But history is a funny thing. It doesn’t flow in straight lines. And movements can give us hope like the incredible Black Lives Matter movement did last year and will continue to do.

The rule of the few over the many rests on very shaky ground. Those with power fight harder to make it seem inevitable that they will be in charge forever than they do trying to make the system work.

A dozen years ago, the financial crisis began to expose their weakness. Now it is us, the many, that are assembling the ideas and the movements to change the world.

The Peace and Justice Project is part of that effort, alongside so many others. Because it isn’t just about one organisation, one movement, one group of people. Our greatest strength is that we are many, but we come together in unity, in hope, in love, to demand peace and justice for all.

I hope you’ll join us in this fantastic endeavour.

Thank you.[5]

Half a million reached

36,000 PJP supporters are already signed up

On 18 January 2021, Peace and Justice Project tweeted:

"We're over the moon.

  • Half a million reached
  • Tens of thousands watching much or all of our launch
  • £30k in small donations in one day
  • 36,000 supporters signed up

"Thank you so much to everyone involved. Sign up to campaign today."[6]

Pre-launch interview

Jacobin magazine's David Broder interviewed Jeremy Corbyn ahead of the project launch.[7]

Covid-19

DB When the pandemic started, many hoped that it would prompt widespread political change — and international cooperation. But a report this week said something quite different has happened: the wealthiest countries are hoarding the vaccines, while in much of the world under one in ten people will get a jab in 2021.[8] What can be done to force an effective response?

JC The way the vaccine rollout is happening is disappointing. When the World Health Organization announced the pandemic, it required all states to take appropriate action. Some did, some didn’t. Many people lost their lives because the testing regime the WHO wanted was not put in place — including in Britain and the USA.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights includes access to health care. And the search for a vaccine should have been an opportunity for international cooperation and sharing scientific resources. Instead, it’s become a competition between big pharma; and I suspect companies like Pfizer are going to make a mint out of this.

Joe Biden is promising vaccines for about a third of the US population in one hundred days – and Britain something similar over a bit of a longer period.[9] But Pakistan, Nigeria, and countries across Africa and South Asia will get nowhere near that level of vaccination.

This crisis has exposed all the inequalities in the world. And there’s going to be more of these kinds of novel viruses. So, we’ve got to get real about the need for a World Health Program.

The WHO have been talking for years about the need for access to universal health care. If the world can get together and give support to deal with Ebola, it could do the same with coronavirus. Many seem more interested in self-protection than global protection. But ultimately, there’s no hiding from mass contagion.

President-elect Biden

DB Since Biden’s election, he’s talked about restoring US “leadership” in the world. He has said he’ll return to the Paris environmental agreement, but also criticised Trump for dropping the ball on NATO and his supposed softness on China. Do you see a Biden presidency as more susceptible to pressure on climate action and the COVID-19 response, or is this just about reasserting US hegemony?

JC It’s quite contradictory. Even after he’d already won the nomination, Biden moved further away from much of Bernie Sanders’s agenda. It’s good that he’s said he’ll rejoin Paris and be more involved in international climate action — it’s hard to get near to net-zero without the US, China, and India being closely involved.

Where I become concerned is when he talks about reasserting American leadership in Asia-Pacific and NATO. He’s proposing to maintain or increase defence spending. Meanwhile, the British government has already announced a very substantial increase in defence spending while also cutting its aid budget below what had been agreed as a legal requirement.

The COVID-19 crisis has shown that what brings security is respect for the health needs of the entire world. Instead, we’ve got a growth of Cold War rhetoric on both sides of the Atlantic, and I suspect a reassertion of NATO versus Russia. I have many criticisms of the Russian government — I’m realistic about the situation there. But there is no secure future for anybody if we get into a war of rhetoric between the US and Russia or China.

There has to be a process looking at the real issues the world faces: the huge environmental crisis, global poverty and inequality, systematic abuses of human rights, and the wars fought for minerals or as proxy wars between the big powers. When UN secretary-general António Guterres called for a global cease-fire in January, the UN General Assembly and UN Security Council said, “what a splendid idea” – and then did precisely the opposite. Particularly over Yemen: arms sales to Saudi Arabia have grown, and the Abraham Accords are increasing arms sales to the UAE and Bahrain.

So, we need a very strong peace, justice, and fair-globe movement in the USA as in Europe. Over the last ten years, I’ve been encouraged by how the US left has begun to assert itself through the Sanders campaign, through the socialist grouping within the Democrats and many trade unions. There are obviously huge issues to face. But the Black Lives Matter movement is fantastic and has led to a re-understanding of both US history and European colonialism. If the next generation has a better understanding of the past than this one, then I’m hopeful for the world.

Foreign policy and terrorism

DB As Labour leader, you changed the discussion about foreign policy, notably with your speech after the terrible terrorist attack in Manchester during the 2017 election. There was media uproar that you’d linked foreign policy to terrorism – though what you actually said was measured and chimed with many people’s thinking. But since you stepped down in April 2020, Labour has swung toward accepting Boris Johnson’s militarism and “great power” outlook. How can that critical approach be kept alive even without the institutional platform you had as leader?

JC The bombing in Manchester was horrific – young people’s lives were taken in an absolutely horrible and brutal way. It hit during the election, and there was an agreement to suspend campaigning for a few days, which I think was right.

When I returned, I wanted to make a statement about foreign policy, and the effects of past wars on our own security. I was very strongly advised by many people not to do it: they said it would destroy the campaign, destroy our chances. I said no – we have to face up to the reality of the foreign policy that we’ve followed all these years. It’s not condoning bombing, it’s not condoning terrorism, it’s not condoning murder – obviously not. But you’ve got to face up to the reality of what Western strategy has done.

So, I made the statement. In the first few minutes afterward, it was widely objected to by very prominent people – but not as widely as I expected. And a lot of people said that it was measured and a sensible way of presenting things. A few hours later, YouGov produced a poll which showed 60 percent support for what I had said. I think it was a turning point in the election. Because it showed a thought process among the public that was interested in looking differently at our foreign policy.

I’d already made clear that we were changing direction. In 2016 I issued, as promised, an apology for Labour’s role in the war on Iraq, in front of military families who’d lost loved ones there. This was the same day the Chilcot report into the Iraq War came out and also the day of most intense pressure from the Parliamentary Labour Party for me to resign.

They’d already passed a motion of no confidence – all day long, I got a stream of people demanding my immediate resignation, because they didn’t want me to give the apology and my reply to the inquiry. They were well aware that my leadership represented the antiwar movement, especially over Iraq. But giving that apology was one of the most poignant occasions of my life, with the absolute silence in the room. I just felt for all those people sitting in front of me, who had lost loved ones in Iraq.

I hope what we put forward in 2017 and 2019 remains party policy – it’s important that it does. But the direction in which the British government is taking us, with increasing arms expenditure and decreasing foreign aid – and the Labour front bench in parliament accepting the increased arms spending, at least – is not necessarily the best of signs.

The Project for Peace and Justice is about ensuring that attitude toward international affairs is there in public debate, in research, in activism. But it’s also linked to the effects on the economy and life in this country. If we’re going to spend increasing amounts on armaments, don’t raise taxation at the top end, and pursue an economic strategy of repaying the debts incurred during coronavirus, then the only way forward for this government is wage freezes, cuts in health, education, housing, and all the other crucial budgets, and even more intense austerity than we had after 2010.

This isn’t a new political party, but a space in which people can come together. On January 17 we’ll be holding a big virtual global seminar. There’ll be speakers from the US, Latin America, South Asia, as well as from communities in Britain that have suffered grievously from job losses and deindustrialisation. And so, too, young people determined to fight for the Green Industrial Revolution.

Issues that matter to people

DB Some of the accounts of your leadership have a certain derisive attitude toward international issues — “Jeremy’s only interested in what’s happening in West Papua” rather than supposed “ordinary people’s concerns.” But for many people of my generation, the war in Iraq was itself a political awakening. How can we link these different levels of issues?

JC Some of what’s been written is interesting, but some is extremely patronising and doesn’t seem to be rooted in the reality of people’s lives in this country. The amount of poverty and dislocation that exists is absolutely huge, the amount of people accessing food banks is growing, as is the number of people living in insecure housing.

Everything in our manifestos was designed to redistribute power and wealth, to democratise our economy, and to recognise the need for a Green Industrial Revolution, to provide jobs and the environmental sustainability we all need. So, our manifestos were designed to meet ordinary people’s needs.

But as I said in the 2017 campaign, the security in our lives also depends on our foreign policy. Do nuclear weapons and a huge buildup of arms expenditure actually make us more secure, or more vulnerable? Aren’t the global effects of the pandemic, of environmental degradation, of massive flows of finance capital and global corporate power around the world, damaging to us?

The idea that we can immunise ourselves from what’s happening around the world is complete nonsense, as even Boris Johnson is discovering. He’s got to do some kind of trade deal with the EU by December 31 or hope for a sweetheart deal from the USA even without his friend Trump in the White House — which I don’t think he’ll manage.

But there’s also an important moral point in all this. The Iraq War cost the lives of hundreds of thousands of people. It was based on an absolute lie. People in Britain and around the world could see it for what it was. At the Hyde Park protest in 2003, I said, if the Iraq War goes ahead it will be the wars of tomorrow, the terrorism of tomorrow, and the refugee flows of tomorrow. Was I wrong?

There are now more refugees around the world than at any point in recorded history – over seventy million people and rising. They’re all people who want to live, to make their mark, to make their contribution. Are we going to move toward a security state that sends the Navy against refugees, or do something politically, economically, and environmentally to deal with the core problem of global inequality and injustice?

I’m prepared to argue that case anywhere. And don’t think that the young generation, working class youth growing up in Britain and America, aren’t fully aware of this. Black Lives Matter spread around the world so quickly because people saw something of their situation in the way the police behaved toward black people in the USA.

Latin American politics

DB Your life has been especially shaped by Latin American politics: recently, you spoke to Jacobin about your journey to Chile in 1969, shortly before Salvador Allende’s election, when you also visited Bolivia. This year, amid all the gloomy circumstances and defeats, one bright spot was the Movement Toward Socialism (MAS) winning that country’s elections. Do you think the current experiences in Latin America also have lessons for how we do politics here?

JC Yes, because the resilience of the message of social justice is very strong.

I was in Chile in 1969 at the time that Popular Unity had just been formed. I was nineteen; I was just observing things, listened to wonderful folk music, saw people coming together from different political strands including the Mapuche community with the Left.

That resulted in the Popular Unity victory in 1970, though on under 40 percent of the vote. Allende formed the administration which did so much to try to improve living conditions, education, housing, and cultural opportunities for the poor. He was overthrown by the CIA in conjunction with the Chilean military, in a brutal coup. But his spirit lives on.

Who remembers Pinochet with affection, who remembers Allende with affection? I think we know the answer. The legacy is huge: in the protests in Chile last year which brought about the referendum and the public discussion on the new constitution – what names kept coming up? It was Allende, Victor Jara, Pablo Neruda…

Likewise, in Brazil:Lula led the foundation of the Workers’ Party (PT). It increasingly became a powerful political force, it won the elections, but then Lula was removed by what can only be called lawfare, as was Dilma Rousseff. Yet today, the PT’s strength is coming back, because of the measures they introduced to reduce the worst levels of poverty. The resilience of the message is huge.

Again, in BoliviaMAS partly came into existence on the back of a very long tradition of radical politics going back many, many decades. Bolivia also has a much stronger sense of non-Spanish hegemony compared to other Latin American countries, and the greatest linguistic diversity. The opposition to water privatisation fed the growth of a movement which eventually made Evo Morales president. He was removed – and went to Mexico, Argentina, and now back to Bolivia. But his place in history is absolutely secure. I wish Bolivia’s new government well – and I hope it can continue the redistribution of power and wealth that Evo’s government achieved.

Giving people hope and optimism

DB You’ve devoted five decades to international solidarity work, most often in direct opposition to the British governments of the day. Without getting into the details of your suspension, these last few months have brought a particular McCarthyism. Is there something new in this – is it different from what the Left suffered in the 1980s, under Margaret Thatcher?

JC There’s always individual pressure on people that speak out. Last night we did a discussion about Tony Benn. His daughter Melissa gave a lovely message about him, and spoke of the abuse their family had from the right-wing media. Hostility toward the Left by very powerful, very right-wing media sources is not new.

In 1907, Keir Hardie did a world tour. He went to the USA, Australia, India, South Africa, then he reported back on it at a massive rally in the Albert Hall. His tour was followed by the Daily Mail, which condemned him for supporting Indian people over the British Raj, and for opposing the racism in South Africa. He was roundly abused. The Left in the 1930s, when George Lansbury was Labour leader, was roundly abused; Nye Bevan was abused.

But the reality is, if you get a message across which challenges the undemocratic power of some media sources, and the injustice and inequalities within our society, then they’re going to kick back. I know that. I’ve suffered all this nonsense for quite a while and no doubt will continue to do so.

But it’s a price worth paying, if it gets out a message of social justice that gives people hope and optimism. At the meetings I do, I say: power exists in lots of places; it’s partly about holding elected positions. But it’s also about the power of communities to change things, to prevent factory closures, to develop schools and nurseries and parks and community centres, to get clean air where there’s foul air, to get clean water where there’s dirty water. All those things empower people, and that’s what our political mission has to be about – empowering people in the face of elites that don’t want them empowered.

On my suspension, obviously I deeply regret it, and I’m very grateful for all the support I’ve received from within the party and within the community. And I’m urging people to fight back against it, because the labour movement belongs to all of us.

Building something important together

DB To end on the Project for Peace and Justice – what can people do to get involved?

JC It’s a new and exciting project – and unknown territory for all of us.

We will be looking to analyse issues; to organise with, connect, and empower groups that exist already, and to support big campaigns for change. We want to cooperate, not compete, with others. For example, we’ve had messages of support for the launch so far from the Orgreave Truth and Justice campaign in Yorkshire as well as trade unionists in Bolivia and the USA. And connecting up those campaigns, seeing the big and small pictures at the same time, is so important.

We will work with unions and social movements to build a network of campaigners, grassroots activists, thinkers, and leaders, to share experiences and generate ideas about solutions to our common problems. Whether it’s Rolls-Royce workers defending their jobs in Barnoldswick, or the huge protests in India, whether it’s children going hungry here in one of the world’s richest countries, or languishing as refugees from war and crises.

We will combine research and analysis with campaigning and organising. And we can build on the popular socialist policies developed in the Labour Party over the past five years.

I hope we’re going to build something important together. This year, many of us have felt powerless in the face of forces beyond our control. It doesn’t have to be like that.

We’ll have a global launch on January 17, hopefully with a very big global audience on it. We’ll have figures from all over the world and across generations there. I’m very excited and very enthusiastic about it, and I hope you’ll be joining us.

Alternative COP26

On 12 October 2021, the Peace and Justice Project announced a Climate Conference hosted by the PJP in Glasgow and online:

As world leaders meet for COP26, the Peace and Justice Project is working with trade unions and campaigns across Scotland, UK and across the world to host an alternative COP26. Bringing together speakers and cultural figures, we will host four days of talks, discussions and performances to ensure that the voices of workers and under-represented groups are recognised. Join us at Websters Theatre in Glasgow on 8th, 10th and 11th November, and at Southside Community Centre in Edinburgh on 9th November 2021. Read below about the evening events throughout the week and look out for the daytime sessions to be announced soon.[10]

First anniversary

17 January 2022 marks one year since Jeremy Corbyn launched the Peace and Justice Project to build and support campaigns for social justice in Britain and across the world:

One year ago today we launched the Peace and Justice Project.

Britain was in lockdown but the scientific and technical capacity to vaccinate the entire world in a little over a year existed. Instead, Big Pharma, supported by rich countries including the UK, kept the vaccine recipes under lock and key. The result: mega profits for a few while today the world suffers from the highest Covid case load yet.

We live in urgent times. History, for good and for ill, is on the march. The last decade was the hottest on record. The wealth of the richest 10 men doubled during the pandemic. Fewer than 10% of people in low-income countries have received even a single dose of Covid-19 vaccine. These facts are related. The pandemic period has seen three global crises intensify: the climate emergency, an economy that generates inequality and insecurity faster than prosperity and freedom, and a global order that holds back the vast majority of our planet’s people.

We might look around us now and think things look bleak. But history is a funny thing. It doesn’t flow in straight lines. Movements can give us hope and are the motor of change in history.

Our task is to build those movements for justice.

In November of last year, the global elite gathered in Glasgow at COP26, rubbed shoulders with fossil fuel lobbyists and failed to agree on a path that would avert climate breakdown. The Peace and Justice Project was in Glasgow hosting our own Alternative COP26. We brought together a broad coalition of workers, activists, trade unions and communities from across the globe, to build a vision for justice on a liveable planet.

The Peace and Justice Project has built local campaigns too, from pandemic solidarity in food and baby banks, to setting up news and supporter clubs around the UK. We have empowered communities to build their own campaigns, highlight the issues that matter most to them in their local area and build grassroots networks in towns and cities up and down the country.

This growth rests on the incredible support of the thousands who have joined us over the past 12 months, participated in our campaigns and chipped in with donations to make sure we can continue to bring people together for social and economic justice, peace and human rights in Britain and across the world. Our greatest strength is that we are many but we come together in unity, in hope, in love, to demand peace, and social justice, for all.

In the coming months we will be ramping up our pandemic solidarity campaigns: organising on local transport issues; setting up clothing banks and working with trade union branches to support disputes and win recognition. And soon we'll be releasing a podcast speaking to campaigners organising on some of the most important issues of the day - and how we can win a world for the many, not the few.

From Jeremy and the team at the Peace and Justice Project, thank you for your support and solidarity.[11]



References