13 October 2009


Every day over 50,000 people die of easily preventable and treatable causes. Millions of people all over the world are living in extreme poverty. Their situation is likely get worse if the world does not urgently and substantially cut the emissions causing climate change.

In 2008, 117 million people worldwide joined together to Stand-up against poverty

This year over the weekend of Oct 16-18 you are being invited again to take a stand to end poverty and pledge your support for the Millennium Development Goals by joining with a group of people and together take the pledge to act against poverty, and registering the number of participants who took part.

For stories, background information about the issues and suggestions for organizing a simple event visit the Stand-up against poverty website.


If greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise unchecked, it is likely that global warming will exceed four degrees by the end of the century, research by scientists at the British Met Office have stated in a recent report to the UK Government.

Scientists, working on behalf of Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC), have found that if current high emissions continue there could be major implications for the world — with higher temperature rises than previously thought.

Dr Richard Betts, Head of Climate Impacts at the Met Office Hadley Centre, presented the new findings at a special conference this month. 'Four Degrees and Beyond' at Oxford University, attended by 130 international scientists and policy specialists, is the first to consider the global consequences of climate change beyond 2 °C.

Dr Betts said: “Four degrees of warming, averaged over the globe, translates into even greater warming in many regions, along with major changes in rainfall. If greenhouse gas emissions are not cut soon, we could see major climate changes within our own lifetimes.”

Those concerned about this issue who would like to take some action to influence governments in the lead up to the United Nations Copenhagen Climate Change Conference in December are invited to check the
International Day of Climate Action website.


As part of Anti-poverty week in Australia Rise Up is offering to take those who purchase one of their business shirts on a virtual 16-week ‘journey’ that takes the purchaser from the farm through to fabric production in India, shipping, manufacturing in Australia and delivery to the customer.

As part of the journey purchasers will receive weekly updates which will include blogs, newsletters and video interviews with workers.

The business shirts are 100% Fairtrade Certified Organic Cotton, carbon neutral and made in Australia by outworkers who are part of the No Sweatshop network.

$10 from the sale of every shirt during anti-poverty week will also be donated to either Oxfam or Life Changing Experiences.


If the campaign to abolish capital punishment needed a further example to support its arguments then surely the current case of Paul William Scott does that.

As reported recently in the National Catholic Reporter Scott an indigent, poorly-educated, drifter was found guilty of murder and sentenced to death in Florida's electric chair in 1979.

However his convicted co-defendant has long since confessed to committing the murder of James Alessi. Subsequently Kondian "plea bargained" down to a 2nd degree murder sentence, served 15 years and was released in 1994.

Upon being informed of facts and irrefutable truths, nine of Scott’s former jurors have expressed shock and dismay in being misled, lied to and tricked into a guilty verdict and a death sentence. Eight members were outraged enough to make affidavits stating they were deceived by the state and voicing their regrets.

Yet thirty years after being convicted Scott remains on death row.

In more hopeful developments for those working to abolish the death penalty, the World Coalition Against the Death Penalty reports that the African Commission on Human and People’s Rights has organised its first regional conference on the death penalty in Africa in late September - a sign that Africa may be moving towards a regional abolition treaty, whilst Brazil became the 72nd member state to accede to the Second Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights that abolishes the death penalty without any possibility of re-instating it.

The World Coalition Against the Death Penalty sponsors a World day Against the Death Penalty on Oct 10th each year.

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