Rome Conference: Jobs and Ecology are Connected
Catholic peace and justice groups, social institutes, as well as Orthodox and Muslim leaders came together to talk about how labour practices, jobs and ecology impact one another.
Paying workers a just wage has been “one of the most consistent and central themes of Catholic social teaching” for more than a century, said Cardinal Peter Turkson, president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace.
Wages cannot be left solely to the whim of the market, but must be influenced by justice and equity —a wage that allows people to live a truly human life and fulfil family obligations,” the cardinal said opening a conference on sustainable development and the future of work.
The four-day conference, co-sponsored by Cardinal Turkson’s office, Caritas Internationalis and the International Labour Organisation, brought together an international group of representatives of labour unions, Catholic peace and justice groups, social institutes, as well as Orthodox and Muslim leaders to engage in a dialogue about how labour practices, employment and ecology impact one another.
The pope had spoken about the conference on Labour Day in Italy and many other countries. After reciting the Regina Coeli prayer, he told people in St Peter’s Square that he hoped the conference “would sensitise authorities, political and economic institutions and civil society for the promotion of a development model that takes into account human dignity with full respect for labour laws and the environment”.
The pope tweeted about “the grave problem of labour”, particularly because of the high rate of unemployment among young adults, but also because the dignity of work is often overlooked in the modern economy.
Opening the conference, Cardinal Turkson said “the need to protect employment” was one of the central themes of Pope Francis’ 2015 encyclical, Laudato Si’ on care for the environment and the promotion of a “human ecology”.
The document affirms that “decent and sustainable work is fundamental to how we care for our common home,” the cardinal said. Work is worthy of the human person “when it is decent and sustainable for workers, employers, governments, communities and the environment.”
Cardinal Turkson said that human progress cannot be measured simply with indicators of economic growth and the accumulation of material goods. True, sustainable development, he said, relies on economic growth, social inclusion and environmental sustainability.
Decent jobs are the link holding the three together, he said.—By Cindy Wooden, CNS
Latest posts by Jael SC (see all)
- New Cardinal from Laos is Known for Kindness - May 27, 2017
- The Devil prefers a Comfy Church that Overlooks Truth - May 27, 2017
- Trump arrives in Holy Land, visits Holy Sepulchre, Western Wall - May 24, 2017