Compassion has the power to change politics for good.
From inequality to homelessness, divisions over Brexit to refugees dying at sea - imagine how these issues would be tackled if compassion was the main motivation of decision-makers.
Yet compassion has been edged out of the political debate, replaced by a politics of fear, anger, and divisions and a narrative which emphasises individual success over collective well-being and happiness.
And yet, when we look at ourselves and our lives it seems pretty obvious that we are so much more than that. We love, care, volunteer, help and support. Our proudest political achievements as a nation - the introduction of the NHS, the Kindertransport which rescued 10,000 Jewish children from the Nazis, the legalisation of homosexuality - were all built on compassionate principles.
What if instead of rewarding self advancement and encouraging greed we celebrated and cultivated those types of policy and the values that they represent?
Through a new kind of politics and with a new set of values at the heart of decision-making we can create a nation that cares for one another, improves everyone’s lives, and protects our natural world.
Matt Hawkins has led a number of social and environmental justice campaigns. He was part of the Nobel Peace Prize winning team at the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) which successfully lobbied the UN to introduce a ban on nuclear weapons. Most recently, he managed the Equal Civil Partnerships Campaign which secured the introduction of civil partnerships for mixed-sex couples.
Jennifer Nadel is a qualified barrister, author, political strategist, activist and award-winning television journalist. She has reported for the BBC, Channel Four News and was ITN’s Home Affairs editor. Her report exposing the use of rape as a weapon of war in Bosnia was used by UN war crimes investigators and she’s reported extensively on how the law discriminates against women. Her most recent book, WE, charts how to bring about individual and societal change. Her father came to the UK on the Kindertransport. She is on the board of INQUEST, a charity which supports families whose relatives have died in custody.
External Affairs Advisor
Rebecca is an experienced campaigns and advocacy professional, who has worked in senior positions for organisations including PEN International, the Women’s Institute, and ICAN (International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons), which won the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize.
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