International Day of Cooperatives

On July 4, we are joining the International Cooperative Alliance (ICA) on the celebrations of the International Day of cooperatives. This year’s theme is equality and the slogan is ‘Choose cooperative, choose equality’.

Cooperatives create equality

The global income gap is still widening. A recent Credit Suisse report estimates that the top 1 percent of the globe’s population possesses nearly half of the world’s wealth, whereas the bottom half of world’s population holds less than 1 percent of its riches. Cooperatives bring resources under democratic control. They allow people who are not in a pole position through gender, race, lineage or other, to assemble and own a business. Cooperatives provide common people with a formal way of earning their lives, to benefit from legal protection and to increase their negotiation power.

Choose a more equal world

Inequality affects us all. Choosing a more equal world means:

  • Choosing to build a better economy – Inequality slows GDP growth. It hinders human capital accumulation, hurts educational outcomes and long-term economic prospects for those on the lower end of the income ladder.
  • Choosing better infrastructure – When excluded, people cannot participate in the institutions that build a society. Examples of this are medical capacity building, industry requiring schooled craftsmen, or credit and insurance.
  • Choosing safety – The social impacts of inequality include unemployment, violence, crime, humiliation, and deterioration of human capital and social exclusion. Inequality negatively affects democratic participation, it fosters corruption and civil conflict.
  • Choosing democracy – Inequality erodes the fairness of institutions. Inequality often makes that governments cannot be held accountable. Where social institutions are already fragile, inequality further discourages the civic and social life that underpins effective collective decision-making which is necessary for the functioning of healthy societies.
Read more on ICA’s website.

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