NEW YORK (June 7) — An alternative Summit, in lieu of the United Nations Conference on the World Economic and Financial Crisis and its Impact on Development which was postponed from June 1-3 to June 24-26, was organized by a grassroots network known as the Bail-out the People Movement (BOPM).
Held outdoor in front of the United Nations Headquarters, the event was called People’s Economic Summit. Its purpose was to invite voices of concerned public to engage in an official discourse on the global economic crisis and its impact on people’s struggles.
Members of Filipino organizations Anakbayan New York/New Jersey and the NY Committee for Human Rights in the Philippines led break-out groups before the plenary session started in the afternoon. Members of Anakbayan from Jersey City facilitated youth issues while members of NYCHRP facilitated concerns on immigration and struggles against corporate power around the world
During the larger plenary session in the afternoon, two Filipino panel speakers– Dulphing Ogan of Kalumaran, an indigenous peoples alliance in Mindanao, and Berna Ellorin, Chairperson of BAYAN USA– gave presentations analyzing the root causes of the global economic crisis, its impact on the Philippines, and the implications of the postponement of the UN Conference convened by UN General Assembly President Miguel D’Escoto of Nicaragua.
Ellorin presented a statement from RESIST!, a international campaign against globalization and war initiated by the International League of Peoples Struggle (ILPS), warning of intentions of the most powerful and industrial countries of the world, the G7, to derail the D’Escoto’s UN Conference due its aim to examine how poor, developing countries are affected by the crisis and to seek pro-people, cooperative solutions to alleviate the intense burdens on the world’s impoverished.
Other plenary panelists included Byron Blake, UN Ambassador for Jamaica and senior advisor to D’Escoto, who offered a greeting to the Summit audience and former US Attorney General Ramsey Clark.
A special forum on Migrants in conjunction with the UN Conference will also be held on Monday, June 22nd, 7pm at the UN Church Center (777 United Nations Plaza) in Manhattan.