Posted by: hksaa | February 7, 2010

香港永續農業關注協會就樂施會於2010年1月22日發出之聲明作出資料補充

香港永續農業關注協會

就樂施會於2010122日發出之聲明作出資料補充

對於樂施會於2010122日發出聲明,表示曾資助本協會舉辦「支持『反高鐵』運動的一些相關活動」,本協會有下述資料補充﹕

香港永續農業關注協會向來關心本地可持續發展、社區經濟及結構性貧窮的情況,本協會眼見近年香港經濟發展過份依賴地產金融業,「高速發展是硬道理」的發展方向讓社會各階層也要付出沉重環境、生態、人文、土地農業、民生等代價。故此,本協會於去年9月向樂施會申請資助,倡導一個名為「關懷本土發展」計劃,透過高鐵項目反思以基建主導的發展模式,以及提出關懷本土發展的方向。

可惜自2010年以來,廣深港高鐵的討論已趨兩極化,整個「關懷本土發展」計劃的工作漸漸被坊間誤讀及約化為「反高鐵活動」,本協會對事態發展實在深感遺憾。

本協會去年9月至12月期間接受樂施會資助,主力舉辦研討會,反思城鄉發展及公帑運用;進行社區影響調查,包括統籌聯絡、文件回顧、實地考察、收集問題、撰寫報告、發佈結果等。透過這些深化工作,此計劃在去年成功引起社會將「城市發展」、「公帑運用」及「結構性貧富懸殊」三個概念並置討論,以致普羅市民明白「鐵路走線愈貧,總站愈富」的道理,了解以龐大公帑投資基建往往影響財富分配,知道大型基建未必增加基層就業,受鐵路穿地層的居民更體會資訊貧窮(Information Poverty)如何導致實際貧窮等等。

但是自本年來,廣深港高鐵的討論漸趨兩極化,以致有部份市民以「問責之名」挑戰樂施會資助顆伴機構的原則、審批程序,本協會認為部份要求超越理性範圍,忽視「關懷本土發展」倡議計劃所引起社會廣泛關注貧富兩極的問題,而聚焦於檢視活動的形式及參與者的立場是否反高鐵等等。作為樂施會的長期合作伙伴,本協會期望樂施會在面對公眾壓力時,秉持樂施會作為獨立機構的角色,維持其向來行之有效的行政程序。我們認為現時樂施會的首要任務是繼續其使命﹕

「樂施會是一個獨立的發展及人道援助機構,致力於消除貧窮,以及與貧窮有關的不公平現象。我們認為貧窮多源於不公平,要消除貧窮,必須配以經濟、社會及結構性的改革。我們與面對貧窮的人們和夥伴機構合作,一起推動發展項目、人道主義項目、政策倡議及公眾教育等工作。」

聯合國去年10月調查顯示,香港貧富懸殊積分佔全球 27個先進經濟地區當中首位,近年樂施會積極參與探討可能影響香港貧富差距或貧窮人生計的議題,可謂盡量緊貼香港社會脈博,為香港貧富懸殊問題探索出路。 本協會期望惡意攻擊的事件可以盡快告一段落,以致樂施會的時間及資源可以集中於前線工作,處理香港日益嚴重貧富懸殊的情況。

香港永續農業關注協會

二零一零年二月七日

A Supplementary Statement to the Oxfam Hong Kong’s Public Statement issued on Jan. 22, 2010

In response to Oxfam Hong Kong’s Public Statement released on Jan. 22, 2010 that acknowledged Oxfam HK had supported “some activities related to public campaigning against the XRL plan”, our Association would like to put forward the following comments.

Hong Kong Sustainable Agriculture Association (HKSAA) has been continuously concerned with sustainable development, community economy and structural poverty in Hong Kong. In view of the heavy environmental, ecological, humanistic, agricultural and social costs incurred in the high-speed development model and the fact that our economy has been over-dependent on property and finance, our Association had launched a “Concern for Local Development” project that aimed at rethinking the infrastructure-oriented-mode-of-development as represented by the XRL plan. We submitted our project proposal to Oxfam Hong Kong in Sept. 2009 and it was then funded by Oxfam.

Unfortunately, after entering into 2010, the debate on XRL has increasingly polarized and our “Concern for Local Development” project was subsequently misread as and reduced to an anti-XRL activity. To this unexpected turn, our Association would like to express our deep regret.

From Sept to Dec. 2009, our Association received financial support from Oxfam Hong Kong for hosting a seminar on rethinking the urban-rural development models and how the government money should be spent. With Oxfam’s support, we also conducted an impact assessment survey. Through documentary review, field work, questions collection, report writing and results dissemination, our project had successfully facilitated the general public to consider “urban development”, “government expenditure” and “structural polarization” inter-connectedly. Our activities had also made clear to the public that the construction of large infrastructure in the Hong Kong context does not necessarily increase employment opportunities for the low-income groups. In contrast, the construction of XRL may intensify the problem of poverty and escalate income and information inequality.

Unfortunately, as the views on the XRL become polarized, there are voices, in the name of “public accountability”, that try to challenge Oxfam’s principles on funding partner organizations and its procedures of approving applications. The attack focuses on the form of our activities and the participants’ political stance, instead of on the fundamental concerns of our project, i.e. arousing public’s awareness on the problem of income polarization. We think that this vicious attack is already beyond the convention of rational discussion. As a long-term partner of Oxfam Hong Kong, our Association sincerely hopes that Oxfam Hong Kong will continue its effective administrative procedures and maintain its independence in face of external challenges. We think that it is much more importance for Oxfam Hong Kong to focus its organizational mission: “Oxfam Hong Kong is an independent international development and humanitarian organization working against poverty and related injustice. We recognize that much poverty is caused by injustice and that poverty alleviation requires economic, social and structural change. We work with people facing poverty and with partner organizations on development, humanitarian, policy advocacy and public education programmes.”

According to the UN survey released in Oct. 2010, Hong Kong’s income inequality is the worst among the 27 advanced countries. In view of this, Oxfam Hong Kong’s recent participation in the study of the livelihood of the poor, factors that contribute to the escalation of income inequality, and solution the poverty problems is extremely timely. Our Association hopes that the vicious attack to Oxfam Hong Kong will soon come to an end, and Oxfam Hong Kong will be able to spend more time and energy on resolving the problem of increasing income polarization.

Hong Kong Sustainable Agriculture Association

7/2/2010

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