Declaration of G8 Action Network in Sapporo (Japan)

Friday 4 July 2008

Stop neo-liberalism’s brutal control - bury the G8 summit forever through the solidarity of the oppressed!

"Say enough is enough to poverty, unstable employment and social exclusion! - Anti-G8 Sapporo Action "


Income disparity and poverty have become serious to the point of desperation. The few persons who dominate global wealth and exercise political power have abused an ideology called neo-liberalism and justified their inhumane tactics of suppression and exploitation. Competitive market fundamentalism has helped the world’s ten richest people make 6 billion dollars in assets, which is more than double the national income of all developing nations.

The G8 summit has been part of this force imposing neo-liberal globalism on each nation while manipulating world politics and economy. The fact that only eight governments should have such extensive power to make decisions that affect the world is evidence of the arrogance of rich nations. This shows the unequal and truly unfair nature of neo-liberalism. Especially since the 1994 meeting of the labor ministries, the G8 has repeatedly insisted on labor market reform and rationalization of social security. Labor market reform has led to job flexibility and unstable employment, as well as a rationalization of social security that has resulted in reductions in unemployment insurance, government welfare assistance and income redistribution. Each nation continues to push for liberalization in addition to increased flexibility of the job market and reductions in social security, while each nation also continues to evade making decisions regarding providing aid to developing nations and alleviating debt. Now, unstable employment, income disparity and poverty have become increasingly serious in developing and industrialized nations alike. Welfare facilities have been closed, society’s weak have been shut out, and basic human rights are being violated.

We represent the jobless, homeless, day-laborers, workers with little pay and unstable jobs, migrant workers, immigrants, farmers without land, women, disabled, people of various sexual orientations, ethnic minorities, slum residents and discriminated buraku. We are all victims of the same neo-liberal policies even though we come from different backgrounds. We suffer at the bottom of our societies. Our income stays below poverty level no matter how hard we work. We are excluded from public services and social infrastructure. We have gathered here in Hokkaido today as leaders of the world’s seven richest nations and Russia meet. We come from all struggles and walks of life - from across Japan and the world. We are here today to assert that we are united under our victimization by a neo-liberalist world. We shall overcome the differences in our backgrounds and our lives to fight in solidarity and stop the vicious control of the rich nations.

We saw in the chairman’s statement at the labor ministries’ meeting in Niigata that the G8 nations cannot avoid recognizing how neo-liberal policies have created income disparity. However there is something we should never forget. They pretend to understand the problems we raise, while they downplay the unjust nature of their own neo-liberalism, thus deceiving us with demonstrations of their favor and support. We demand that neo-liberalism be abolished, political agenda be changed, fair labor and equal pay become guaranteed, and perfect security be provided for protecting basic human rights. Governments have historically maintained their control by manipulating oppressed groups so that they oppose one another. But we have joined together in solidarity here today, and we will not be divided. We refuse to be forced into competition that only causes us to race to the bottom. We shall overcome our differences. We join together in solidarity to say no to neo-liberal globalism. We join hands in as we share each other’s struggles and engage in joint action across the world. We will continue our fight until we have established together an equal and fair society where no one is oppressed or exploited.

Stop neo-liberalism’s brutal control! Bury the G8 summit forever through the solidarity of the oppressed!

Sapporo, July 4, 2008

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