Parliamentarians for Global Action
|Founded||1978 in Washington, D.C. by a group of parliamentarians from around the world |
Parliamentarians for Global Action (PGA) is a non-profit, non-partisan international network of committed legislators, informs and mobilizes parliamentarians in all regions of the world to advocate for human rights and the rule of law, democracy, human security, non-discrimination, and gender equality. PGA Membership is open to individual legislators from elected parliaments. Currently it consists of over 1,100 members in approximately 139 parliaments. It was established circa 1978 as Parliamentarians for World Order engaged in a range of action-oriented initiatives that promote democracy, peace, justice and development throughout the world. The vision of PGA is "to contribute to the creation of a Rules-Based International Order for a more equitable, safe and democratic world".
The main office of PGA is located in New York City, while the seat of the PGA Foundation is in The Hague (The Netherlands), in proximity to the International Court of Justice, the Hague Academy of International Law and the International Criminal Court.
PGA promoted the establishment of a permanent International Criminal Court (ICC) since 1989 and the ratification of the International Criminal Court treaty , the Rome Statute, since 1998. PGA has contributed to the ratification of 76 out of 122 States Parties to the Rome Statute to the ICC.
The most important event of the PGA International Law and Human Rights Programme is the Consultative Assembly of Parliamentarians for the ICC and Rule of Law. From 2002 to 2004, the Consultative Assembly met on an annual basis in 2002 in Ottawa, in 2003 in New York and in 2004 in New Zealand. Under its current biennial format, the fourth session took place in Japan (2006), the fifth in Santo Domingo (2008), the sixth in Kampala, Uganda (2010), the seventh in Rome, Italy (2012), and the eighth session is planned to take place in Rabat, Morocco in December 2014.
PGA’s Peace and Democracy Program focuses on marshalling global parliamentary support for improved regulation of the international arms trade, in particular where its inadequacies play a demonstrated role in destabilising countries, causing or fuelling conflict and/or delay the emergence of countries from conflict. In particular, PGA Members worldwide advocate in favour of improved regulation of Small Arms and Light Weapons (SALW) exports through strengthened domestic legislation, broader adherence to relevant regional Conventions and the UN Programme of Action on SALW. As of November 5, 2014, PGA Members have made important contributions to moving the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) signature process forward in 40 of the 122 UN Member States that have signed the ATT, and in 24 of the 54 UN Member States that have ratified the ATT to date.
PGA's Gender, Equality and Population Programme promotes human dignity and the human rights principles of equality and non-discrimination and to build communities where women and men have equal value. The programme focuses on promoting and protecting the rights of women and girls, especially by addressing harmful traditional practices like early, child and/or forced marriage and female genital mutilation; and countering discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. In 2014, the GEP launched a Parliamentary Campaign against Discrimination based on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity.
PGA includes among its membership a concentration of high-level politicians, including past and present Prime Ministers, Cabinet Ministers, and Chairs of Finance, Foreign Affairs, Human Rights, Population, Health, and Defense Committees. Many of PGA's members have left parliament for higher government posts such as the Presidencies of Albania, Botswana, Iceland, the Philippines, Trinidad & Tobago, Prime Ministership of New Zealand and Pakistan, and Vice Presidency of Dominican Republic. The recently elected Vice-President of the Commission and High Representative on Foreign and Security Policy of the European Union, H.E. Federica Mogherini of Italy was also an active PGA Member prior to taking up this position.
Membership criteria based on democracy
In order to qualify for full membership the Parliament must adhere to all of the following criteria:
- the members must be freely elected by the general population or a reasonable segment of it,
- the election should be open to more than one party, or to those who have no party,
- the Parliament must evince an actual ability to engage in free debate,
- the Parliament must have the right to turn back legislation proposed by the government.
- International Law and Human Rights
- Peace and Democracy
- Gender, Equality and Population
- ICC Campaign for the Effectiveness and Universality of the Rome Statute
- Global Parliamentary Campaign for Signature, Ratification and Implementation of the Arms Trade Treaty
- Parliamentary Campaign to Prevent and Eliminate Harmful Traditional Practices - Child, Early and Forced Marriage and Female Genital Mutilation
- Global Parliamentary Campaign Against Discrimination based on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity
- Global Parliamentary Platform for the Abolition of the Death Penalty
- "PGA Overview". pgaction.org. Retrieved 15 October 2014.
- Parliamentarians for Global Action
- “PGA Regional Seminars on Strengthening United Nations Peace Keeping Operations – International Parliamentary Input. Informal Briefing with the Security Council, G-77, United Nations Committee for PGA and UN Officials”. May, 2002. Final Report.