Policy on Peace and Development
Our vision is a democratic, diverse and peaceful world, where any individual can live up to their full potential, free from alcohol and other drugs.
1. One World - Common Responsibility
Active builds its work on the foundation laid by the IOGT International Platform, which has a long tradition in fighting for peace, human rights, equality and liberty for all people.
No matter where we live, if we are rich or poor, free or oppressed - all humans share the same earth. We have built boarders between our countries, but some things do not stop at the customs. Pollution of the environment, globalisation of the economy, lack of democracy, oppression of minorities and gender discrimination - all these are global challenges rather than national. Therefore people need to co-operate across borders and find common ways to meet these challenges. We share this world and have a common responsibility towards it.
The consumption of alcohol and other drugs and its consequences is an obstacle to development in many parts of the world. Therefore Active is actively promoting an alcohol- and drug free lifestyle as a part of its peace and development work.
2. The Rights of Young People
Active, as an organisation representing children and youth, is specifically concerned with the situation of young people in the world. We can see that young people are not always treated with the respect they deserve, and often become victims of problems caused by adults.
The United Nations declaration on Human Rights (1948) is essential in Active´s work for peace and development. In 1989 the United Nations passed the Children's Rights Convention, which for example states that every child has the right of life, education, basic health care, citizenship, a home and enough food to eat. Active demands that all the countries in the world ratify this convention and incorporate it into their legal system. In doing so, the convention becomes binding for every government and citizen in the world. Active believes this will ensure a better protection of children's and young people's rights.
Active believes that no youth should have to experience war, nor should they participate by fighting as soldiers. Everyone has the right to live in peace.
Active also believes that young people should have the right to influence the society they live in, and to promote their own solutions to different problems.
Young people have the right to inherit a living and prosperous earth. Every generation has to take responsibility for the environment. Agenda 21, which was the result of the Rio-conference (1992), was made to ensure that every country in the world could take a common responsibility for the environment.
Active also believes that standard of living is of big importance when it comes to young people's opportunities. Children of refugees and minorities and within addicted families should have the same living conditions as other children.
3. The Responsibility of Rich Countries
A few of us are living in some of the richest countries in the world. We have an abundance of food, money and things, but at the same time millions of people are starving. Therefore it is our responsibility to share our welfare with others.
One way of doing this, is relieving poor countries of their enormous foreign debts. Many poor countries have big debts to the rich world, which they are not able to pay back without neglecting their own development. Those sums are huge for the poor countries, but not equally large for the rich world. To support a sustainable development in poor countries, Active supports the "Drop the debt”-campaign for the cancellation of the debts of poor countries. Active also call upon Active member organisations to support national "Drop the debt”-campaigns.
War and torture is a part of people's daily life in some places of the world. Sometimes the threats may come from other states, and sometimes from their own government. Whether this happens within Europe, or in other parts of the world, the countries not affected by war and torture have a responsibility to help refugees and influence the states to stop their oppression.
4. Tolerance and Minorities
To create a peaceful world we have to start by changing our own attitudes and way of thinking. As long as people do not accept each other and respect each other, we cannot achieve peace. Active believes that all people should have the same rights regardless of sex, religion, colour and ethnic background, handicaps, political opinions or sexuality. Therefore we cannot accept oppression of any kind. We believe that a tolerant multicultural society is a condition for a good democratic society.
Racism, religious and ethnic discrimination, xenophobia and intolerance endanger the essential fabric of modern societies, and are therefore not acceptable. We believe in the world based on respect for human rights, democracy, tolerance and equal dignity of everyone.
Active encourages youth mobility in order to promote intercultural understanding. This requires the abolition of visa restrictions and the support of present programmes favouring youth mobility (e.g. the Inter-Rail Card).
-support the “Drop the debt”-campaign and encourage its member organisations to support national “Drop the debt”-campaigns.
-consider the environment in every activity, for example to use green transports.
Active advocates for
1. The Rights of Young People
-that all the countries in the world ratify the UN Declaration of Human Rights and the Convention of Children's Rights and incorporate them into their legal system. In doing so, these become binding for every government and citizen in the world.
-that every country in the world signs and fulfils the Agenda 21 agreement.
-that questions concerning young people, such as education, spare-time activities etc. should not be decided by adults without consulting the youth.
-that young people can take part in democracy and that they have the right to believe and express their opinions and feelings without being punished.
-that society should help people who have alcohol- and/or other drug problems. Children within addicted families, refugees and minorities should be supported by the whole society.
-continuous disarmament. No war materials should be produced or traded and no civil facilities should be used as war facilities. Nobody should be forced to participate in war. Active supports a world-wide ban on nuclear weapons. Active does not accept toys and games that promote war or aggression towards others.
2. Tolerance and Minorities
-that oppression of people because of their sex, religion, colour, ethnic background, handicap, political opinions or sexuality is stopped.
-promotion of education in the fields of human rights and respect for cultural diversity.
-strengthening programmes aimed at eliminating prejudice by emphasising positive mutual influence between different countries.
-that national governments must implement real multi- and intercultural educational systems at all levels (primary, secondary and university). It is at school that one learns to live with others and to respect different cultures.
-reinforcement of guarantees against all forms of discrimination based on race, national or ethnic origin or religion.
-that political leaders of different countries should set up independent legal bodies to deal with racist acts, introduce a system of compensation for the victims of racist acts, guarantee the right to asylum for refugees and facilitate applications and granting of citizenship or dual citizenship where appropriate.
-that temporary refugees should be granted permission to health care, education and work, and be allowed to stay at least until it is safe for the refugee to return to the home country.