A desperate and largely unknown humanitarian crisis is deteriorating in the Lake Chad Basin region of West Africa, forcing millions of people to flee their homes and leaving millions more in need of humanitarian assistance. Oxfam is providing life-saving support but help is urgently needed to prevent the crisis turning into a catastrophe.
Yesterday I joined Robin Hood and his Merry Band – leaving the forests of Sherwood to descend upon Brussels.
We were there to send a message to the leaders of Europe as they gathered to discuss jobs, growth and climate change at the EU Heads of State Summit. A tug of war between bankers on one side – calling for leaders to ‘save our bonuses’ – and Robin Hood and his Merry Band on the other, took place in front of the European Parliament.
Dozens of journalists and camera crews pitched up to see the EU leaders caught in the middle, wondering whose band to join.
Some supportive MEPs also strapped on their green masks to support the campaign – Robin’s arrows had already hit the European Parliament. They recently voted in favor of a resolution on “making financial transactions taxes work” by a massive 536-80.
The resolution calls upon the European Commission to explore how to implement such taxes in the best way possible. Who won the tug of war?
With my bow and arrows successfully wrangled through security, this Lady Marion is now looking forward to a snooze on the train.
Following the success of the Robin Hood Tax campaign in the UK, Europe is now following suit as organizations and networks are joining in the fight to ensure EU leaders agree and implement the Robin Hood Tax. This tiny tax of 0.05% on financial transactions could help EU leaders deliver on promises they’ve made to tackle the financial crisis, climate change and poverty, home and abroad. It’s quite simply a great idea!
In the UK, 70,000 people have voted in favor of the Robin Hood Tax on the RHT website, and 40,000 have signed up for e-mail updates. There are 140,000 Facebook fans and 3,000 Twitter followers, and over one million people have seen Bill Nighy and Richard Curtis’ promotional video. Momentum is gathering for this tiny tax.The campaign is supported by: Oxfam International, CAN Europe, Friends of the Earth, European Public Health Alliance (EPHA), Avaaz.org, Stop AIDS Alliance, CIDSE, European Attac Network, CNCD, European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC), WEED, Campagna per la riforma della Banca Mondiale.