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SOCIAL DEMOCRATS FOR SDGs: SocDem Asia Parliamentarians' Caucus Resolution on Advancing the SDGs

SocDem Asia Parliamentarians' Caucus Conference 2022
SocDem Asia Parliamentarians' Caucus Conference 2022

Monday, 29 August 2022

WHEREAS, we recognize that the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, adopted by all United Nations Member States in 2015, provides a shared blueprint for peace and prosperity for the peoples of the world. At its core are the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) which are an urgent call for countries for global partnership. The SDGs recognize that ending poverty and other deprivations must go hand-in-hand with strategies to improve health and education, reduce inequality and spur sustainable growth. The very foundation of these goals are very close to the principles espoused by the social democratic movement, which are first articulated in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) in 1948, and elaborated in two International Covenants: Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR), adopted by the UN in 1966;

WHEREAS, such SDGs are rooted and aligned with the principles that social democrats have for decades been fighting for. Namely, our movement's struggle for collective prosperity, welfare for all, justice, fair distribution of wealth, decent employment, as well as free education, renewable and sustainable energy sources, health and water provision for all the peoples of the world;

WHEREAS, we recognize the huge crises we face today as shown by the climate crisis, the COVID-19 pandemic, continued threats to our peace and security, and the persistent problem of social and economic inequality. With these dire situations, clear options unfold – to further insecurity, fear and hate or to foster peace, care, and solidarity. The option for us social democrats is definite. We need stronger welfare systems to care for our people and for peoples across the world. We will pursue a reorientation of our economic and political systems that supports a transition towards renewable energy and food security. We offer sustainable solutions for development and long-lasting peace. There is a clear need for the SDGs and its full implementation to avert the consequences brought forth by these multiple crises;

WHEREAS, we understand the necessity of social democratic leadership in these times. While inroads have been made in the SDGs, huge challenges continue to hinder and delay its full implementation. We can no longer rely on the status quo and business as usual attitude. The crises we face necessitate recognizing the urgency of the task at hand, the need for political will and broad alliances to ensure the SDGs fulfillment. The huge systemic changes to our economies, society, and institutions can only be fulfilled with social democratic leadership at the forefront;

THEREFORE, as members of the SocDem Asia Parliamentarians’ Caucus, we commit to collective understanding and action in ensuring promotion of the SDGs at the regional level. This includes greater collaboration among social democratic parliamentarians in this endeavor. We also commit to sharing our achievements, policies, knowledge and experiences to fellow social democratic parliamentarians of our work in fulfilling the tasks set out in the SDGs;

THEREFORE, as members and leaders of social democratic political parties, we commit to pushing our respective political parties to deepen their engagement on the SDGs and to ensure that the policies we are championing are aligned with the SDGs and are formally part of our party manifestos and platforms. We will also ensure that our parties conduct education programs to deepen our members’ awareness and understanding of the SDGs and contribute to their implementation at all levels and for the involvement of civil society organisations. We will also work towards building political will and constituencies through meaningful engagement with our constituencies to ensure their participation in pushing for the reforms that are instrumental in pushing for the SDGs. As we believe the SDGs are truly “social democratic goals” we are keen on ensuring our parties are able to promote, advance and assess the progress of the SDGs as these are vital to fighting inequality and poverty;

THEREFORE, as individual parliamentarians, we also commit to ensure that public policy and public budget align with the SDGs through our intervention in legislative work. We will also ensure that our governments have accountability and are faithful to their commitment in implementing the SDGs. We will also ensure the participation of our constituencies from different sectors and ensure they are fully participating and are engaged so that they are true stakeholders in the process. This also means working towards popularizing and mainstreaming the SDGs in our respective communities;

BE IT RESOLVED THAT, as social democrats we fully take on the role of championing the SDGs. We are fully aware that the promise of a social democratic future characterized by equality, prosperity for all, justice, and ecological sustainability is inextricably tied to the fulfillment of these SDGs. The SDGs underscore the need for pushing systemic and fundamental changes in our economies, society, and politics. Such systemic changes need bold leadership, clear vision, and a strong commitment towards social and economic justice. Only social democrats have proven that they are capable of the task ahead.

Adopted by the participants of the Socdem Asia Parliamentarians Caucus Conference on Advancing the SDGs, on the 24th of August 2022, in Kota Kinabalu,Sabah, Malaysia."

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