REPORT CONCERNING PARTNERS FOR GLOBAL CHANGE

January 22, 2009 by cgsstlouischapter

                                                            by Yvonne Logan

   At noon on Saturday, January 10, 2009, immediately after the CGS/STL board meeting at the World Community Center, we had our usual every-other-month conference phone call for “Partners for Global Change” from the national CGS office in Washington DC. We used our speaker phone so that all of us could hear.
   The conference call was chaired by CGS CEO Don Kraus.  He filled us in on a  letter titled “Call to the New President for Responsible U.S. Global Engagement” signed by 147 national NGO leaders, including Don.  The hope is to initiate a process to bring the Call’s international goals to the attention of the 10 million Barack Obama supporters in our communities by means of our future Partners’ Projects.
   Don introduced four leaders of other international organizations who also had signed the letter.  (1)  Sharon Kelly of Human Rights First discussed their current priorities of closing the Guantanamo Bay base and totally ending torture by this country.  (2)  Katherine Silverthorne of the environmental group E3G spoke on pressing climate change issues such as the need to put binding caps on carbon emissions.  (3)  John Isaacs, Executive Director of the Council for a Livable World, focused on arms control priorities, noting that there had been no progress on agreements to reduce nuclear weapons since 1991.  (4)  Todd Shelton of InterAction emphasized the need to get increases for the U.S.international affairs budget and a greater reliance on diplomacy for national security.
   These and other organizations were invited to be part of this cover-the-waterfront call in accord with the plan that we in CGS will become more active locally in coalition work, already at a high level in Washington.  Kelly emphasized that Congress needs to hear our opinions on these subject.  We were reminded that adoption of a new Kyoto Treaty protocol depends on getting at least 67 Senators to vote for it.  It was noted that the International Criminal Court (ICC) was taking baby steps in successful prosecutions which will eventually (hopefully) bring our U.S. military into line with endorsing it.
   The bipartisan nature of these future achievements depends on citizen pressure.  More participation is needed in our local Partners for Global Change program.   Plan to join us for our next conference call at the World Community Center (438 North Skinker Blvd.) at noon, Saturday March 14.  We recommend that you bring a sack lunch to eat while we listen to the call. If you would like more information, contact Ron Glossop at <rglossop@mindspring.com> or by phone at               314/869-2303        or call Yvonne Logan during the middle part of the day at               314/862-5735        or evenings at               314/961-5994       .  Please help us do our part.
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