The World Summit of Nobel Peace Laureates, of which the Global Security Institute is a long-time associate, has a powerful element of youth participation, including special panels for youth with Nobel laureates, joint activities with youth organization, and more.
At the end of this year’s Summit in Meridá, Mexico, the youth groups worked together to present their own declaration from the Summit.
TEXT OF YOUTH DECLARATION:
We are the changemakers. We will come together to develop positive and sustainable impact on local communities into a global transformation. We do not believe in action through violence. We pledge to be empathetic to all humans.
We, as the youth, question:
How do we inspire peaceful dialogue?
How do we rise above hatred and bigotry?
We declare that Human Rights are not negotiable;
Family gives us roots and inspiration to shape our societies and future visions of the world. We believe that family is defined by the members of each family, who provide profound care to each other. We the youth affirm the inherent human right to choose who to marry regardless of race, gender, sexuality, religion, or nationality. We must build structures to ensure that families stay together, and children & women are free from any type of violence or abuse. We commit to be changemakers in our own families, to bring inner peace and bring light to social issues.
In a world that is spiraling out of control, challenges of increased violence, malnutrition and depression have clear tangible solutions. The invisible thread that ties all of these together is the power of sports, which nourish our body and soul and give us all hope: from spreading life-changing values to transforming violent communities into safe spaces, getting involved with healthier life-styles and practicing any kind of sport, can bring inner peace while having enormous outer positive impact. We will create awareness through education that leads us to healthier ways of life.
Basic human needs are not being fulfilled in a sustainable way. Poverty must end. We will generate a culture of changemakers starting by changing ourselves and inspiring others by our own actions as a peaceful human revolution. We commit to use technology to connect solutions to communities. We promote a world where people can exercise soft, hard and technical skills, oriented towards the creation of common grounds, constructive dialogues and the insurance of basic needs for all human beings.
Climate change is real. We believe that in order to mitigate the effects of climate change, we must transform our agricultural systems and support sustainable, organic, and humane food production. We implore governments and corporations to divest from fossil fuels and urgently decarbonize our atmosphere in accordance with the Paris Climate Agreement. We strive to promote and create a demand for green jobs and a green economy.
We are the most diverse generation, but our governments do not reflect the same diversity nor they give us the representation we deserve. We represent almost half of the global population. We take serious responsibility to make our voices heard in an accurate way. We invite all under-represented groups to raise their voices and make sure that their issues are addressed, and their beliefs recognized.
We understand the need for reconciliation. We must urgently start truthful dialogue about how colonialism disrupted the structural narrative of development in countries during the last centuries.
We strive to create a society where voices and history of indigenous people are well represented. We commit to creating the conditions where structures and institutions allow people to thrive in our societies from whatever origin they have, without giving up their beliefs, values, language, identity, religion and law systems.
We will be agents of change for exchanging the benefits of science and economic development to all nations, in order to have the resources and agency to manage their own development, through social and political participation. We will make this transformation based on non-violence principles and mindset. We will promote an examination of the concept of Human Rights to shift its individualist view to the notion of Community Rights and ensure that voices from indigenous people are heard!
The power of law is a valuable tool to protect all people. We believe human rights must be taught in schools to guarantee youth empowerment to engage in civil discourse in order to demand honest, transparent, and accountable governments. We will assure government programs promote sustainable social development.
We agree that an International Environment Court is required in order to hold accountable all those that damage all life.
We highlight the importance of freedom of press and freedom of speech with respect in order to guarantee peace, minorities’ rights and prevent the oppression. As the youth, we believe that media is the gateway to global engagement, however, we are not able to come together towards common efforts with unreliable and baseless information. Thus we believe in the urgent need of a new generation of media ethics. We are committed to becoming responsible consumers and producers of positive, pacific and constructive media.
We believe education should focus on the prevention of digital obstacles to peace, such as cyberbullying and fake information. We will use the power of media as a tool for democratizing knowledge and giving voice to all people.
With nuclear threat lingering above our heads, how can states ever make peace?
Nuclear weapons are a one-second choice; with no second chance. We must encourage nuclear disarmament, and empower future generations through education, focused on peace, respect, trust, and above all, human dignity.
With education we can foster unity within our communities, we can leverage our governments to take action on nuclear disarmament in a sustainable way. We will shift the perception of the power of weapons to focus on the power of people and their inner potential. If we change the perception of power in the world, we can be stronger than any nuclear bomb and transit back to global citizens.
Love via recognizing and respecting the humanity in all people is important to building peace. Love is and always has been stronger than fear, we will use love to create empathy. Empathy is the most important quality that a world leader can have in promoting solidarity among all human beings. Education is the most powerful tool in peacekeeping.
Today´s youth is a hopeful and visionary generation, with the drive that pushes us to move forward in order to create a better world. We look forward to a brighter future, to a day where youth-led actions create intergenerational dialogue. We believe it is fundamental to embrace a collective consciousness and aim to become global-minded citizens.
We are inspired for the future by the collective youth finding our voices together. We hold steadfast in seeing all humans as individuals rather than as categories or stereotypes.
This we declare, this we commit, we are the changemakers!
Jonathan Granoff is the President of the Global Security Institute, a representative to United Nations of the World Summits of Nobel Peace Laureates, a former Adjunct Professor of International Law at Widener University School of Law, and Senior Advisor to the Committee on National Security American Bar Association International Law Section.