Millions mobilize worldwide and on web demanding that world leaders eradicate poverty

Oct 16, 2009

Date: 16-18 October, 2009
After a year in which progress on eradicating global poverty has actually reversed, millions of people will come together across continents, cultures and time zones next week to tell their governments in no uncertain terms what they want them to do: End Poverty Now.
Citizens will gather at events across the globe on October 16-18, 2009 as part of “Stand Up, Take Action, End Poverty Now!” to demand that world leaders achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) – a set of promises to eradicate extreme poverty and its root causes by 2015. In a sign of the massive global demand for the achievement of the MDGs, last year more than 116 million people participated in “Stand Up,” shattering the Guinness World Record for the largest mobilization of human beings in recorded history.

“With just six years left until the deadline by which heads of state have pledged to eradicate extreme poverty and its root causes, ‘Stand Up’ will be a stark reminder that citizens will not accept excuses for governments breaking promises to the world’s poorest and most vulnerable citizens,” said Salil Shetty, Director of the United Nations Millennium Campaign. “This year’s mobilization will place particular emphasis on telling world leaders that their track record on women’s rights, maternal mortality and hunger is unacceptable. Citizens refuse to accept the fact that 70 percent of the people living in poverty are women and children and 500,000 women continue to die annually in the process of giving life, and they are demanding urgent action from their leaders.” “Millions of people are standing up against poverty, while politicians are sitting on their hands,” said Adelaide Sosseh, Co-Chair of the Global Call to Action Against Poverty (GCAP) based in The Gambia.

“The combined effects of the economic, climate and food crises are affecting people of all ages and stations in life, in all countries – especially women -- but those already living in poverty are the hardest hit. Given the amounts found to bail out banks in just a year, we know the resources are not lacking. It´s this lack of political will to tackle poverty that remains the biggest motivation behind Stand Up participation.”