Jamra primary scholl for children affected by HIV/AIDS, drugs or poverty, Senegal (c) Nell Freeman/Alliance Participants in the Photovioce project, Ecuador © Marcela Nievas for the Alliance
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Merry Men say ‘Make Finance Pay!’

27
MAY
2010

Merry men on London's Southbank

‘Make Finance Pay’ was the message that the Alliance, along with fellow Robin Hood Tax coalition members and campaigners around the world, sent to their governments during last week’s global days of action for the Robin Hood Tax.

Around the globe campaigners in the United States, Canada, France, Australia, England, Scotland and Germany came together to demand a Robin Hood Tax – a tiny tax on financial transactions that would raise up to $400 billion to tackle climate change and alleviate poverty.

The week’s activities kicked off in a rainy Washington, where Monday saw over 1000 activists rally in K street – the heart of the US finance sector’s lobby. In France, a broad coalition of international development charities, environmental groups and trade unions joined forces to launch a petition for a financial transaction tax. And on Wednesday and Thursday, Robin Hood and his merry men stole the show – appearing in eye-catching stunts and events in cities across the globe! From London to Sydney, Toronto to Berlin, Glasgow top Perth - the merry-men and women drove home the message that world leaders must agree a Robin Hood Tax – and had some fun along the way!

London’s Albert Embankment was one of the locations chosen for an eye-catching stunt. Merry men and women, with Parliament as the backdrop, were there to welcome the new Parliament and urge new MPs to make a Robin Hood Tax on banks one of their top legislative priorities. Campaigners held giant mosaics of portrait photos of thousands of Robin Hood Tax supporters. 

The Global Days of Action took place under the cloud of financial meltdown in Greece, a crisis of the Euro-zone and tumbling stock markets. These developments have renewed the demands for tighter regulation and taxation of the financial sector. Last month the IMF called for governments to introduce two new taxes on banks and hedge funds. And as European Finance Ministers prepare to meet in Brussels tomorrow, Angela Merkel has thrown the German government’s weight behind a global Financial Transaction Tax.

Next month, G20 leaders will meet in Canada to discuss the global economy – presenting a critical opportunity to make the finance sector pay for the costs of the economic crisis. In the final weeks before the summit, campaigners will continue to demand that their politicians agree a new tax that could raise $400 billion for fighting poverty and climate change. It’s an opportunity to turn the crisis for the banks into an opportunity for the world!