Human Concerns: Fair Trade
Volunteers help promote in the parish community an awareness of Fair Trade and its benefits. Fair Trade is a social movement that empowers developing country producers and workers and promotes sustainability through economic self-sufficiency. Volunteers advocate the payment of a fair price as well as social and environmental standards in areas related to the production of a wide variety of goods. Help is needed to plan and implement an educational component on issues surrounding fair trade. Volunteers also plan and staff the annual Fair Trade Festival.
Why do we do it? A note from the United States Bishops:
"We therefore consider it our duty to reaffirm that the remuneration of work is not something that can be left to the laws of the marketplace; nor should it be a decision left to the will of the more powerful. It must be determined in accordance with justice and equity; which means that workers must be paid a wage which allows them to live a truly human life and to fulfill their family obligations in a worthy manner. " Mother and Teacher, #71
"In other words, the rule of free trade, taken by itself, is no longer able to govern international relations. Its advantages are certainly evident when the parties involved are not affected by any excessive inequalities of economic power: it is an incentive to progress and a reward for effort. That is why industrially developed countries see in it a law of justice. But the situation is no longer the same when economic conditions differ too widely from country to country: prices which are freely set in the market can produce unfair results. One must recognize that it is the fundamental principle of liberalism, as the rule for commercial exchange, which is questioned here." On the Development of Peoples, #58