Stamp Out Poverty Campaign : Autumn Update 2008

If you ever only read one of our updates, make it this one…

Crises * Shock * Crises

Reports now state that in 5 years time the Arctic will have melted away – the first time that part of the world would be free of ice for 3 million years. As the climate warms, the banking world is in meltdown – the cost to date of the financial crash is a staggering $2,800,000,000,000 (2.8 trillion dollars). Most of us haven’t yet felt the impact of either crisis, but the world’s poor – those whose lives are most unable to withstand changes in climate and financial circumstance – are going to be severely affected.

Stamp Out Poverty has historically addressed not only extra funds to combat poverty but also how people are made poor. In the coming months we will concentrate our efforts not simply on matters of development finance but critically the interlinked crises of climate change and the flaws of a financial system wracked with unsustainable borrowing and the greed of excessive salaries and bonuses. We are joining with sister campaigns working on aid, trade and debt to take URGENT ACTION now.


Take Action – Take Action – Take Action

Stamp Out Poverty is joining forces with the Trade Justice Movement, Jubilee Debt Campaign, Action Aid, War on Want, and the World Development Movement to call for a fundamental reform of the global economic system

On Monday 10th November, we will be joining scores of protestors ahead of Brown’s speech at the Lord Mayor of London’s banquet to demand a recovery plan for the financial crisis that puts people and the environment at its heart.

If you are in London, please come and join us, details of the event are below. For our supporters who will not be able to make the demonstration, fear not, as you will still be able to add your voice to the protest – please watch this space for the upcoming petition.

Event details


Monday 10 November 2008 – 6.30pm-7.30pm,

Opposite the Guildhall, Gresham Street, London, EC2V 7PG

Come down to the City and bring a bell to call time on global greed. Town Criers, alarm clocks, house bells, bike bells, tubular bells, jingle bells, all bells welcome! Be there, bring the din and make sure that Brown leaves with our call ringing in his ears.


Stamp Out Poverty takes up Climate Challenge

According to the Independent the increase in the temperature of the planet is now happening so quickly that in 5 years time the Arctic will be free of ice – the last time there was watery emptiness at the top of the world was 3 million years ago. If that isn’t a wake up call to everyone that something is seriously changing, it’s hard to know what could be. See the article here.

The heating of the climate is already affecting food production and water distribution, threatening small islands and altering disease vectors. Whilst urgent work to reduce our carbon footprint is required, the costs of adapting to climate change are now a crucial issue, and how funds can be generated is taxing the minds of decision-makers across the world. After consulting with major organisations in the Stamp Out Poverty network such as Oxfam, Save the Children, Christian Aid, WWF and Friends of the Earth, we are pleased to announce that we have undertaken ground-breaking new research with the New Economics Foundation on an array of potential financing proposals. We will keep you posted as this work proceeds.


Campaigns success story

Thank you for taking part in the previous actions to the Japanese ambassador and the UN Secretary-General. We are pleased to announce that Japan has responded by joining the Leading Group of countries working on Innovative Finance.

The Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon, received a letter signed by almost 1,000 Stamp Out Poverty supporters from a variety of countries. The spread of support surprised and encouraged us with people writing in from over thirty countries, including Indonesia, Turkey, Venezuela, Ethiopia and Nepal. The letter keeps the pressure up for a Currency Transaction Development Levy as we approach the UN Financing for Development summit in Doha at the end of this month.


Currency Transaction Tax (CTT) in the News

Out of the current financial crisis, fresh calls have emerged in support of the CTT. In ‘Tobin’s nice little earner’ , Larry Elliot discusses how a levy on currency transactions could raise billions and act to calm markets in turmoil. Whilst Jeffrey Sachs’s recent article ‘Amid the rubble of global finance, a blueprint for Bretton Woods II’ argues that the CTT needs to be incorporated into a new global financial blueprint, with the revenue funding the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Ha-Joon Chang responds to Sachs in his article ‘Bretton Woods II, with caveats’. In this, he broadly agrees with Sachs’s proposals but challenges that CTT revenue should finance the IMF.

Whichever way you look at it, the CTT is now being discussed more and more. You can read Stamp Out Poverty’s latest contribution to this debate, ‘Tax the richest: why are we waiting?’ in New Internationalist’s October issue.


Wanted: For Dodging Tax Justice

The latest issue of New Internationalist magazine focuses on tax evasion and its impact on global development. Christian Aid research reveals that illegal tax evasion by companies is costing developing countries $160bn a year – enough to save the lives of 350,000 children every year.

Place your vote here for who you think is the ‘Most Artful Tax Dodger’!

Thank you for your support,

The Stamp Out Poverty Team