Occupy Adelaide adopts 'vision statement'

November 15, 2011

Occupy Adelaide's November 8 general assembly adopted the document below by consensus.

* * *

We, Occupy Adelaide, are an open and evolving group engaged in the struggle for an equitable, inclusive and sustainable democratic society. We gather in solidarity with the world-wide movement opposing the power and greed of corporations which place profit over people, animals and the earth; self-interest over social justice; oppression over equality; and which control and corrupt our governments.

We occupy to peacefully demonstrate the urgency of rebuilding democracy from below and to challenge the forces of the 1% who perpetrate these injustices.

Our movement welcomes, supports, and is comprised of all generations, ethnicities, cultures, genders, sexualities, and faiths. Because we are first and foremost a people's movement, we choose not to be defined by any political party, organisation, leader, union, or terminology.

We make decisions through an inclusive, participatory, and direct democratic process, where all voices can be heard and actively listened to as we work to achieve consensus. Accordingly, we invite everyone to join us in this process of creating new societies from the grassroots up, for we believe there is nothing more powerful than an engaged people inspired by the shared vision of a better future.

Coming to a shared vision is neither indulgence nor a waste of time, but a necessary step towards taking practical action to build a just, compassionate and ecologically sustainable society in which all beings have an opportunity to flourish peacefully.

We declare that another world is possible.

Our movement has many diverse concerns, but four prominent issues are as follows: A just and sustainable Australia must recognise that the inequalities of wealth and power that have arisen in our society, and especially globally, are socially and politically corrosive. Our wealth is dependent on the exploitation of the majority of the world, and this must change.

Therefore we call for a fundamental revision of the social, economic, and political structures that have given rise to those inequalities, giving particular support to vulnerable and marginalised peoples and communities.

A just and sustainable Australia must recognise that infinite material growth on a finite planet is not possible. Our economy must fundamentally change to confront the crisis of catastrophic climate change and ecological collapse.

We call for the transition to systems of renewable energy and sustainable infrastructure, and we support the emergence of more resilient, local economies.

A just and sustainable Australia must recognise the fundamental rights of all peoples around the world to land and communal self-determination. In Australia, we therefore call for a treaty with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, which acknowledges their rights as the original people of this land.

A just and sustainable Australia must recognise the damage to people, animals and the earth wrought by war and militarism – the global economy of violence which displaces, harms and kills millions, fosters insecurity, intensifies inequality and destroys the environment.

We call for Australia’s withdrawal from unjust overseas wars, the dismantling of our weapons industry, and the active pursuit of global peace.

We acknowledge, however, that it is not enough for us to demand fundamental change from the top down and simply wait until that change arrives. No – we must begin building new societies at once, at the personal and community levels, irrespective of the political response.

Therefore, we pledge to live our values to the best of our ability, by ensuring that our commitments to democracy, justice, community, and sustainability are reflected in our everyday actions. Let us proceed now with unshakeable conviction: humbly, joyfully, and with the fire of true democracy in our eyes.

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