16 February 2012

Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

Secretary-General, in Message to Mark World Social Justice Day, Stresses


Importance of Laying Foundations for Dignity, Stability, Opportunity


Following is UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s message for the World Day of Social Justice, to be observed on 20 February:

Over the past year, the winds of change have swept across the globe.  Citizens by the millions have voiced their discontent around similar themes — inequality, corruption, repression and the absence of decent work.  At the heart of this mass mobilization lies a call for social justice.

Achieving social justice for all is integrally linked to realizing the agreed development goals articulated at the Copenhagen Social Summit, the Millennium Summit and elsewhere.  As we look to the upcoming “Rio+20” Conference on Sustainable Development, we have a chance to rethink development strategies and business practices so that they point us towards a more sustainable and equitable future.

Sustainability depends on building markets that do a better job of spreading the benefits of development.  It means meeting growing consumer demand for greener products and services.  And it means laying the foundations for dignity, stability and opportunity for all.  As we strive to make this transformation, we must integrate social inclusion into our policies and other efforts.

Let us work together to balance the global economy and build a new social contract for the twenty-first century.  Let us chart a development path that leads to greater social justice and the future we want.

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For information media • not an official record