Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has underscored the importance of pursuing social justice worldwide, lamenting that far too many people today are denied this right, which is at the heart of the United Nations' mission to advance development and human dignity.
“Tragically, social justice still remains an elusive dream for an appallingly large portion of humanity,” Mr. Ban said in a message to mark the first-ever World Day of Social Justice.
“Extreme poverty, hunger, discrimination and the denial of human rights continue to scar our moral landscape. The global financial crisis threatens to worsen these ills further still,” he added.
The Secretary-General stressed that the pursuit of social justice for all is at the core of the global mission of the United Nations to promote development and human dignity.
This was evidenced last year in the adoption by the International Labour Organization (ILO) of the Declaration on Social Justice for a Fair Globalization, which focuses on guaranteeing fair outcomes for all through employment, social protection, social dialogue, and fundamental principles and rights at work.
He noted that global stability and prosperity depend on ensuring that people enjoy acceptable levels of well-being and equality of opportunity.
“The absence of social justice for all should be an affront to us all,” he stated. “On this inaugural observance, let us renew our commitment to the principles of social justice and the vigorous pursuit of strategies and policies that will achieve it.”
The General Assembly proclaimed 20 February as the World Day of Social Justice in November 2007, and this year marks the first time that it is being observed.