Strong Interest in Meeting to Discuss Fairtrade

Organised by Chiswick Churches For Justice And Peace

Rup Huq at meeting Organised by Chiswick Churches For Justice And Peace

Rupa Huq MP addresses the meeting


Chiswick Churches for Justice & Peace is an ecumenical association of parishes in Chiswick joined together to stimulate local awareness and action on issues of justice and peace, both at home and abroad.

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There were 50 people at a meeting organised by Chiswick Churches for Justice and Peace (CCJP) on Saturday 19 March held in the Edward Room at Our Lady of Grace and St. Edward Church.

There were talks on the subject of “Food for Life: How Safe? How Fair?” by 4 speakers. The meeting was chaired by Peter Moore, who is the chair of Brent Fairtrade Network and there were representatives from the West London Fairtrade Borough Groups and also from the London Buddhist Vihara. A welcome was given by the Venerable Bogoda Seelawimala, who was followed by a speaker from the Buddhist Vihara who talked about the thousands of people in Sri Lanka who were dying of kidney failure and asked the question, “Was this the result of contaminated water and rice?”

Next we had Cathy Childress, the Church Coordinator for Christian Aid who showed us a film about water security and spoke about climate change and how we can help our global neighbours by sustainable choices. Helen Long then spoke about “Liberation Nuts” and showed us a fascinating film of a family starting the day the UK compared with a family in Bolivia. She emphasised the importance of Fairtrade for brazil nut growers.

Rachel Wadham, the Impact Communications Manager for the FT Foundation, elaborated on how fairtrade works and the difference it has made for farmers as well as the benefits of safe, healthy food for consumers. She told us how fairtrade standards had changed and talked about the Foundation’s 2016 to 2020 strategy, which includes an emphasis on climate change.

The afternoon ended with a talk by Dr. Rupa Huq, the MP for Ealing Central and Acton, who highlighted developments in following the fairtrade example through government and local authority policies. She then faced some challenging questions from the audience.

Fairtrade is still a critical issue in the world and CCJP has continued to promote it where possible and bring the issues to people locally. 10 years ago we took up the challenge in our Churches and in the Boroughs with great results. My thanks to Ros Lister who organised this inspiring afternoon.

Simon Rodway, Chair of CCJP

March 22, 2016

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