international library for a responsable world of solidarity ritimo

Le portail rinoceros d’informations sur les initiatives citoyennes pour la construction d’un autre monde a été intégré au nouveau site Ritimo pour une recherche simplifiée et élargie.

Ce site ( constitue une archive des articles publiés avant 2008 qui n'ont pas été transférés.

Le projet rinoceros n’a pas disparu, il continue de vivre pour valoriser les points de vue des acteurs associatifs dans le monde dans le site Ritimo.

Phone your senators: Reject attempts to revive Keystone XL

In 24 hours, Americans sent more than 802,000 messages urging senators to reject any attempts to revive the Keystone XL tar sands oil pipeline.

The Senate could vote soon on an amendment that would force approval of Keystone XL. Every call you make will help convince wavering senators to stand with us.

Can you phone your senators now and tell them to reject the Keystone XL pipeline?

1. Call the congressional switchboard at (202) 224-3121 and ask to speak with one of your senators. (You can call again to reach your second senator.)

2. Deliver your message. Here is a sample script you can use:

"Hello. My name is _________ and I am a constituent calling from [CITY, STATE]. I’m calling because in 24 hours alone, Americans sent more than 802,000 messages opposing the Keystone XL pipeline. I expect you, and your colleagues, to stand with us against Big Oil, and reject any attempts to resurrect this dangerous tar sands oil pipeline that threatens ecosystems, water and our climate.”

3. Report the results of your call using the form below.

More information on Friends of the Earth

"Stop Paraquat": call to end the production and ban the use of the highly toxic and harmful herbicide

The campaign “Stop Paraquat”, conducted by non-governmental organisations, trade unions, and scientists around the world, calls to end the production and ban the use of the highly toxic and harmful herbicide.

The critics’ main target is the agri-concern and leading distributor of paraquat, Syngenta. The company markets the herbicide in over 100 countries, usually under the brand name ‘Gramoxone’. Paraquat is regularly used on banana, coffee, palm oil, rubber, fruit, or pineapple plantations. Growers large and small use it copiously on their maize and rice fields. Many workers and farmers exposed to paraquat on a regular basis have serious health problems, and deaths caused by the high toxicity of the herbicide, which has no antidote, are not infrequent.

This website contains important information concerning the campaign (links on the right side), as well as many facts about the use of paraquat and various studies on the health problems associated with it (links on the left side).

Read more on the Berne Declaration

[Wanted: the Worst Corportations of the Year]

Call for Nominations for the «2012 Public Eye Awards»

Dear colleagues

The Berne Declaration and Greenpeace Switzerland are once again searching far and wide for corporations that pursue profits without regard for social and/or environmental harm. To succeed, we need your support and the critical eye of civil society!

Whether inhumane working conditions, reckless environmental sins, deliberate disinformation, or the disregard for human rights by corporations: In the run-up to the World Economic Forum (WEF) in late January 2012 in Davos, Switzerland, the worst corporate sins will appear on the 2012 Public Eye Awards short list. We thereby place corporate offenses in the international spotlight and help NGO campaigns succeed. A number of firms have already felt the considerable pressure from the unwelcome exposure in the media and the social Web! Over 50,000 people worldwide took part in the online voting for the People’s Award last year.

We are looking for corporations that have caused social and/or environmental damage in a well-documented case. Two awards will be given:

GLOBAL AWARD (selected by an internal expert panel) PEOPLE’S AWARD (selected by online voting at

Two awards, two opportunities: Tell us who you nominate and why the company deserves one or even both 2012 Public Eye Awards. The easiest way is to send us brief answers to the following questions, totaling no more than two A4 pages:

* What is the company? How big is it? Where are its headquarters? * Which of its activities do you find socially or environmentally irresponsible? * What concrete consequences do the firm’s activities have for humans and the environment? * What is the current status of things, or of your campaign? What are the next steps? * Where on the Internet can we find further information on the case you present?

It pays to participate: If the corporation nominated by your NGO wins, we will bring you to Davos in late January, where you will present your case at our international press conference.

Send nominations to Claudio De Boni, Public Eye Coordinator: DEADLINE: September 30, 2011.

Thank you for your participation and for telling your colleagues!

Good luck and best regards,

François Meienberg Michael Baumgartner The Berne Declaration and Greenpeace Switzerland

More information on Public Eye

Stop Verheugen! Stop ex-Commissioners cashing in!

Günter Verheugen is one of the six Commissioners from the previous Commission team who have moved into private sector jobs which might entail conflicts of interest (out of 13 Commissioners that left in February 2010). Many of these cases, such as Charlie McCreevy’s move to RyanAir and Meglena Kuneva’s move to BNP Paribas, give serious cause for concern. By launching his own lobby consultancy, Verheugen is blatantly violating the rules. However in an interview with EurActiv, the former Commissioner said he doesn’t see he did anything wrong.

Hold the Commission to account! By sending an email you help to put pressure on President Barroso and the Commission to close the revolving door and to tighten up rules for ex-Commissioners and former Commission staff.

Don’t Let Big Oil Off the Hook

We may not know the full impact of BP’s disaster in the Gulf for a long time to come, but one thing is clear- this is BP’s fault and it should pay for the harm it’s causing.

There is currently a $75 million cap on how much an oil company has to pay in the event of a disaster. Unfortunately, the fishing communities, restaurant owners, tourism industry and other individuals affected by this current disaster have lost more than this much already and will lose more in the days, months and years to come.

Can you take action to make sure the $75 million cap is lifted, and that BP will have to pay for all of the harm it has caused?

Take action

Angry Mermaid Award

Cast your vote in the Angry Mermaid Award and help decide which company or lobby group is doing the most to sabotage effective action on climate change.

Voting is open until Sunday 13 December 2009.

Crucial UN climate talks take place in Copenhagen this December. While people, organisations and social movements around the world are calling for strong action to prevent climate change and ensure climate justice, big business has been lobbying to block effective action to tackle the problem, while also seeking to benefit from it. Lobbying is defined as attempting to influence the decision-making process.

The Angry Mermaid Award has been set up to recognise the perverse role of corporate lobbyists, and highlight those business groups and companies that have made the greatest effort to sabotage the climate talks, and other climate measures, while promoting, often profitable, false solutions.

Named after the iconic Copenhagen mermaid who is angry about the destruction being caused by climate change, the Angry Mermaid Award winner will be decided by a public poll. Read the story of the Angry Mermaid.

Thai Labour Court Gives Triumph Factory the Green Light to Violate Human Rights

On November 27, 2008, a Bangkok labour court gave Body Fashion Thailand, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Triumph International, the green light to dismiss union president Jitra Kotshadej.

The company filed a case against Ms. Kotshadej in relation to her participation, during her private time, in a national television debate wearing a t-shirt saying: ‘Those who do not stand are not criminals. Thinking differently is not a crime.’ The t-shirt refers to the right of people not to stand when the royal anthem is played and the abuse of lèse-majesté legislation to suppress political opposition.

Claiming that her appearance damaged the company’s reputation, Body Fashion Thailand first dismissed Ms. Kotshadej in July 2008 after an earlier labour court hearing.

In response, more than 2000 of her co-workers walked out to demand her reinstatement. After a 45-day strike, the company and the union agreed to a retrial of the dismissal case, since Ms. Kotshadej, who had never been properly informed of the company’s charges against her, was not able to present a defence at the initial labour court hearing.

* Read more

* Take action to support the Triumph workers union

Tell Triumph that Fashion Requires Freedom: Reinstate Thai Union President Now!

Body Fashion Thailand, a subsidiary of Triumph International, has fired a union leader for wearing a political t-shirt. Thousands of workers are protesting her unjust dismissal.

On July 30, 2008, a Thai subsidiary of Triumph International, one of the world’s largest makers of intimate apparel, dismissed union president Jitra Kotshadej for wearing an unfashionable t-shirt. She wasn’t wearing the t-shirt at work, and it wasn’t the colour or the design of the t-shirt that caused offence. It was the message that caused the problem: ‘Those who do not stand are not criminals. Thinking differently is not a crime.’ The t-shirt refers to the abuse of lèse-majesté legislation to suppress political opposition and the right of people to refrain from standing during the royal anthem. Ms. Kotshadej was participating in a late night TV debate on women’s reproductive rights when she wore the t-shirt. Despite the fact that she was speaking in her private time and did not claim to speak for Triumph’s Body Fashion (Thailand) Ltd Factory, she was dismissed. Since then, 3000 of her co-workers walked out of the factory in a show of solidarity, demanding the reinstatement of their union president.

  • Please support the Triumph International workers in Thailand, and call for the immediate reinstatement of their union president. Write today to Triumph International’s headquarters in Switzerland :

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