Last month I attended the UN Sustainable Development Summit, which was one of the most exciting events I’ve ever attended. The United Nations want to help rid the world of extreme poverty, provide an equal education for girls and boys, and protect our environment for generations to come, and it was there that they announced a new platform to attain these goals – a total of 17 global goals for global sustainable development. These goals will set the world’s agenda for the next 15 years and the event elaborated on the goals our dire need in the world for this type of change.
Each and every goal is compelling and will save lives, but I am going to focus on one: Goal 16: Peace and Justice. The goal is multi-layered:
- To significantly reduce all forms of violence and related death rates everywhere.
- End abuse, exploitation, trafficking and all forms of violence against and torture of children.
- Promote the rule of law at the national and international levels and ensure equal access to justice for all.
- By 2030, significantly reduce illicit financial and arms flows, strengthen the recovery and return of stolen assets and combat all forms of organised crime.
- Substantially reduce corruption and bribery in all their forms.
- Develop effective, accountable and transparent institutions at all levels.
- Ensure responsive, inclusive, participatory and representative decision-making at all levels.
- Broaden and strengthen the participation of developing countries in the institutions of global governance.
- By 2030, provide legal identity for all, including birth registration.
- Ensure public access to information and protect fundamental freedoms, in accordance with national legislation and international agreements.
- Strengthen relevant national institutions, including through international cooperation, for building capacity at all levels, in particular in developing countries, to prevent violence and combat terrorism and crime.
- Promote and enforce non-discriminatory laws and policies for sustainable development.
As the mother of two young children, ages 10 and 12, this goal is very meaningful to me as it reflects a better world, one in which I want my kids to grow up in and the current situation in Israel is a good example of a need for the world to come together to create a more peaceful existence for the people living there.
Golda Meir, one of my heroines, is one person who tried very hard to bring peace to the state of Israel. She helped to shape the destiny of Israel, the post-World War II creation, especially after she rose to become prime minister in 1969. She was the first woman to become Prime Minister of Israel and was in power for four years. This period was marked by her efforts to gain U.S. aid in the form of military and economic assistance.
She sided with radicals in her government who felt that the territories captured during the 1967 war should be settled by Israelis, yet she also retained the support of moderates who favored giving up land claims in exchange for peace. However, in 1973 and 1974, Israel’s unpreparedness for another of the Arab-Israeli Wars, known as the Yom Kippur War, brought demands for new leadership. After the 1973 elections, Meir was still able to form a new government, but divisions only increased and on April 10, 1974, she resigned as prime minister.
Even in retirement, Meir remained an important political presence in Israel. Her autobiography, My Life, helped assure her place in the public’s imagination as the kindly grandmother who had risen to greatness in her nation’s hour of need. Meir died in Jerusalem on December 8, 1978 and remains one of my greatest heroes. Peace and justice reigned high during her time in power.
Clearly, we have not achieved peace in the region and things are as unstable as they’ve ever been. I have much family and friends living in Israel and am very concerned for their safety.
We need heroes – and more women in power, to be sure. The Global Goals are in full support of young girls and women having equal rights, and of achieving peace and justice in far away places.
But if the goals are going to work, everyone needs to know about them. You can’t fight for your rights if you don’t know what they are. You can’t convince world leaders to do what needs to be done if you don’t know what you’re convincing them to do. It’s the same wherever you are in the world.
Find out what’s going on around the world, decide how you are going to help us reach 7 billion people in 7 days and tell me what’s happening where you are.
These goals are for everyone, everywhere.
Visual identity of the goals created by Trollback + Company.
Disclosure: I was asked to write about the Global Goals by the Mission List, but no compensation is involved nor was I asked to express any particular opinion.