PSPD English Newsletter, November 2017
- 2017.11.14 (10:11:09)
People Power 2017
This month of PSPD
As a season changes by the natural order, the wind starts to get chilly. People usually call the autumn the time of ‘the sky is high and clear and horses grow fat and sturdy’. Here is another idiom referring horses ‘Pushing horses to a greater speed’. Activities of PSPD last month was like whipping horses to run faster. Wishing for the government and the National Assembly not to miss what citizens hope for democracy, justice and peace, PSPD has been busy with urging what have to be urged, and checking and criticizing powers and groups which obstruct reform process. Followings are what PSPD has done last month.
Call for plaintiffs for damage and compensation lawsuit against unfair employment at Gangwon Land
Unjust employment scandal at Gangwon Land revealed last September made many people angry. In cooperation with youth groups, PSPD has reported Kwon Seong-dong and Yeom Dong-yeol of Liberty Korea Party on 27 September for the charge of inappropriate solicitation for employment. Prosecutors have already set their hands to reinvestigate the case but it is to give pressure for proper investigation.
Furthermore, PSPD has called for plaintiffs from 18 October who will file for damage and compensation against Gangwon Land. Applications will be received till the second week of November and it is open to people who had applied for High One trainee at the 1st job opening in 2012 and the 2nd in 2013. In addition to giving criminal punishment to the people who requested unfair employment and who were hired by that solicitation, those employers will be also asked for civil responsibilities for breaking the faith of job applicants who believed recruitment process would be fair. Please contact PSPD if you would like to take part in the legal action.
Completed relaying legislation request to reform Election Law
PSPD has been working for a long time to adopt mixed-member proportional voting system which allocates seats according to votes gained by party for the purpose of expanding freedom to expression of voters and rights to vote. This year, PSPD has formed ‘Joint Action for Political Reform’ with various social organizations and taken the charge of major clerical works.
Relaying legislation request made by various fields of our society started on 11 September and ended with women activists on 17 October. During the period, followings have been demanded. △ Make a law to give a right to vote to age 18 and straw vote △ Mixed-member proportional voting, Improve local election system △ Lower down age of eligibility for election and give quota to the youth △ Adopt mixed-member voting system for local councils △ Permit local parties and secure proportional seat allocation in local election △ Secure basic political rights to teachers and public servants △ Adopt mixed-member proportional voting, Secure transparency of political fund.
PSPD has participated in ‘Meeting for Public-Politic solidarity to reform election law’ on 27 September. Lawmakers from four major parties except Liberty Korea, and civil and social organizations came together for the discussion and agreed to put effort to adopt mixed-member proportional voting system. Participants include Lee Jong-geol and Kim Du-gwan of the Minju, Jeong Dong-young and Chun Jeong-bae, Park Ju-hyun of the People’s Party, Jeong Yang-seok of the Bareun Party and Sim Sang-jeong and Chu Hye-seon of the Justice Party.
One year since Candle Civil Revolution began
As of 29 October, it became one year since outraged citizens at Park Geun-hye and Choi Sun-sil’s monopolizing national administration began to hold candles. For the first five months until impeachment of the president was decided, what the people have shown have impressed all of us and left in our hearts. Having the first anniversary of candle civil revolution, ‘Candles do not stop’ events and rallies were held on 28 October at Seoul Gwanghwamun Square by ‘Committee to commemorate records of action to dismiss’ succeeding ‘Action to dismiss’ which had looked after preparation and rallies of candle revolution.
People’s Constitutional Revision Net held a discussion inviting advisors of Special Committee for Constitutional Revision
PSPD has established People’s Constitutional Revision Net (People Leading Constitutional Revision Network) on 12 October in collaboration with civil and social organizations and currently 119 organizations are participating nationwide.
Special Committee for Constitutional Revision in the National Assembly has been talking about ‘Public oriented constitutional revision’ and had toured provinces holding ‘National Forum’ but not in a way for ordinary citizens to conveniently participate. In addition, free speak out platform for constitutional revision was set up just at one corner of the National Assembly. Especially last February, the Committee did not accept advisors’ report drafted and submitted by 53 advisors from 6 departments and even refused to disclose the contents in despite of advisor groups were formed by the committee itself in order to listen different and broad opinions. Therefore, People’s Constitutional Revision Net has invited the advisors and held a discussion ‘Direction and issues of People Leading Constitutional Revision’ at 10am on Wednesday 18 October at a conference room of National Assembly Members Hall. Head of Policy Team gave a designated discussion.
Published employment status of retirees from financial authorities
There is a system to restrict and examine employment of retired public servants in order to prevent unjust acts or deal of public servants due to retire from giving favors to a company or organization for the purpose of getting a position after retirement, and to block possibility to exercise improper influence to government or public organizations. However, some point out restriction is too loose.
On 18 October, PSPD has released <Employment status of retirees from Ministry of Planning and Finance, Financial Service Commission and Financial Supervisory Service from 2011 to 2017>. From June 2016 to June 2017, 48 retirees were screened for eligibility of getting a position at financial or related institutes and 43, that is 90% received approval.
Peace actions to stop arms trade
Seoul ADEX (International Aerospace and Defense Exhibition) was nicely wrapped with air show, aerobatic flights, future-oriented weapons made by cutting-edge technology, events and exhibitions but the true face was homicide weapon market. Behind roaring sound of air show, there were arms traders from all over the world and autocratic states and countries at war were not exception.
‘Protest Actions against ADEX’ which PSPD and other peace organizations worked together described ADEX as below. International Aerospace and Defense Exhibition which is held from 17 to 22 October is named ADEX by Seoul Airport. The title sounds good but it is an exhibition of high-tech weapons.
PSPD picketed “Death Market ADEX, Stop war trading” on 16 October at a welcome reception which was held for arms traders. It also organized a lecture ‘Growth of Korean defense industry’ on the 18 and promotion campaign on 21 October at ADEX Exhibition entrance, Seongnam Seoul Airport for citizens who had visited the arms exhibition.
번역: 함승연 (참여연대 자원활동가)
감수: 참여연대 국제연대위원회