TAKE ACTION – Sign a Petition
Do you want to make a difference to Women and Girls around the World?
Taking action by signing a petition can really make change happen. Petitions are a great way to get your views heard by Government, get Journalists to take notice or raise awareness about a certain issue. There are so many different petitions flying around, so with the help of our Programme Team we’ve selected a few which we feel are right for you to support.
Please note that the petitions included on this page are ones that SIGBI feels are right for you to support as individual Soroptimists. This does not imply that SIGBI, as an organisation, does so.
In addition if you’d like to contact your local MP about any issues, you can search for their details here.
PETITION 1 – Urge California to ensure all its temporary workers are free from slavery
When was the last time you ate an avocado?
How about olives? Peaches? Almond products?
If you are in the US, it’s almost certain these products were grown in California which provides over 99% of a variety of crops including peaches, raisins, olives, and avocados.
And this is reflected internationally, over a quarter of California’s produce is exported, and it grows over 80% of the world’s almonds. Chances are you have consumed produce from California at some point.
People growing your food may be trafficked and forced to work under the threat of deportation or violence inflicted on themselves or their families.
But human trafficking for labor exploitation is not only a risk for migrant workers in the farming sector. Migrant workers in other sectors in California, including factories, fairgrounds, and restaurants are also at risk.
The current law in California only protects workers from trafficking on a limited visa type. This error has created a loophole that allows for thousands of workers to be exploited and tricked into slavery.
This goes deeper than the produce we consume, it is an error that is causing many to live in fear with no escape.
California attracts more temporary foreign workers than anywhere else in the US. As the fifth largest global economy, workers on lawful visas from all over the world seek opportunities in California. The large economy attracts a high demand for cheap labor creating the conditions that leave some migrant workers at risk of being trafficked into forced labor.
Join in calling on the California State Legislature to amend Senate Bill 477 to protect all migrant workers, regardless of visa or industry, from forced labor and human trafficking.
PETITION 2 – Take a Stand for Generation Equality
Call on world leaders to follow through on the Beijing Declaration for women’s rights.
In 1995 in Beijing, global leaders developed the world’s most visionary agenda to empower girls and women. Since then, incredible steps have been taken globally to achieve a world where She Is Equal. Call on leaders to ensure all commitments made in the Beijing Declaration are delivered.
PETITION 3 – Safeguard Futures: End child marriage
The current law in England and Wales allows 16- and 17-year olds to marry with parental consent, a legal exception that leaves children vulnerable to parental and familial coercion into child marriage.
The Marriage and Civil Partnership (Minimum Age) Bill would raise the legal age of marriage in England and Wales to 18 and make child marriage a crime to better protect children from the risk of coerced child marriage.
Child marriage can be both a cause and consequence of trafficking and modern slavery, impacting the lives of millions of girls around the world. The UK worked hard to ensure the inclusion of child marriage within Goal 5 of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This is a timely opportunity to bring domestic legislation in line with global commitments to end child, early and forced marriage under target 5.3 of the SDGs and to strengthen the UK’s leadership in combatting trafficking and modern slavery globally.
PETITION 4 – Call on the UK Government to take urgent Climate Change Action
Time is running out to stop catastrophic climate change.
Our leaders have let us down. But from school children going on strike, to the rise of clean, affordable community energy, millions of people across the world have recognised the climate emergency – and are doing something about it. Will you join them?
People power has already pushed UK Parliament, Scotland and Wales to declare a climate emergency. Now we need to turn these words into action and make sure our leaders build climate-friendly communities across the country – with warm homes, clean air, green jobs and thriving wildlife.
We want the UK government to adopt our Climate Action Plan by the end of 2020, and:
- Aim for 100% clean energy.
- Invest in green and affordable transport.
- Double tree cover to tackle climate change and support nature.
- Ban fracking and stop using dirty fuels.
- Fund huge scale insulation and eco-heating schemes.
- Stop backing harmful infrastructure – like airport expansion.
- Pay our fair share to help vulnerable countries.
PETITION 5 – Give trafficked children a stable future
Trafficked children need long term support and stability to recover from their experiences, but the UK Government is currently denying them this opportunity. Join us in calling on the government to give trafficked children a stable future.
PETITON 6 – Introduce Effective Mental Health Modules for Students in 200 Schools
Meera faced taunts from her peers at school, for her behaviour, but no one realised that she was going through a mental illness. If not addressed in time, the scars of being targeted in this way can remain with children like Meera for life. Nothing can be a better option that to equip these children with skills to protect themselves.
An “effective mental health literacy” module, through art based therapy, in Government Schools in India would help the students. Starting with a pilot project, the module would consist of two hours of class per week for 8th-12th standard children.
Sign this petition on change.org asking for the introduction of ‘effective’ mental health modules for students & teachers in 200 government schools of Pudukkottai, India.
PETITION 7 – #WHYNOTWATER
- Mandatory water efficiency labelling – labelling is currently rolled out in Australia, California, China and many other countries, so why not the UK? Labelling is also mandatory for energy, so #WhyNotWater?
- Tenants should have the right to use water efficient goods – landlords must have an energy performance certificate (EPC) by law, with financial penalties if they do not. Private tenants also have the rights to request that their landlord installs energy efficient measures – why can’t the same standards be implemented for water?
- Domestic water efficiency through fittings and fixtures through mandatory certification – there is considerable potential to improve water efficiency use by households if changes are made to fixture and fittings through mandatory certification approvals.
- Every local plan in a severely water stressed area should include the target of 110 litres per person per day. (View the PCC targets for each Local Authority)
Proposing some small changes to legislation and policy will have a big impact.
PETITION 8 – ACTIONAID JUSTICE FOR WOMEN CAMPAIGN
All too often, there is no justice for women and girls affected by violence.
But around the world, there are heroes in communities, law firms and police stations who are fighting to fix broken legal systems that protect abusers and punish survivors. These heroes include lawyers sacrificing their fees to help women access justice in Ghana and feminist school graduates in Jordan who are demanding change.
The odds are stacked against women and girls who survive violence. Together with limited legal support, low resources and a fear of retribution, justice systems and social norms put women and girls off from reporting or pursuing crimes against them.
Governments let their justice systems put survivors of violence on trial. This could be through invasive medical examinations or by making them recount their sexual history in court.
In some cases, the violence committed against them doesn’t constitute a crime. Even when laws exist, survivors often don’t report violence because they are unable to access legal advice or lack the economic independence or support to speak out. And sometimes the law holds them as more culpable than their attacker, disbelieving women and charging them with adultery or even sentencing them to death.
Will you join ActionAid in supporting campaigners across the world who are putting the power back in the hands of women and girls who survive violence?
PETITION 9 – IF YOU’RE RAPED BY YOUR HUSBAND IT’S NOT A CRIME IN INDIA
In India, a shocking 98 percent of rapes are committed against women by their husbands, yet, despite this horrifying statistic, all of these rapists are able to avoid punishment. According to Section 375 of the Indian Penal Code, a man cannot rape his wife, even if he engages in sexual intercourse with her without her consent.
But women’s rights activists are trying to change that. They’ve argued that a woman’s right to choose whether or not she would like to have sex is solely hers, and have told the Delhi High Court that more than 50 other nations have criminalized the practice.
What has the government said in response? In an almost unbelievable rebuttal, they contend that: “The fact that other countries, mostly Western, have criminalized marital rape does not necessarily mean India should also follow them blindly,” and that criminalizing marital rape “may destabilize the institution of marriage.”
These excuses are both retrograde and dangerous. The Indian government needs to protect the rights of women to say no, even if it is to their husband.