If you strongly believe in PASSOP’s vision and its mission, you should consider becoming a member.
We have recently launched a membership system, in which people all around the world can sign up and become PASSOP members, forming a global community of human rights advocates. The sign-up process is easy. All you have to do is download the pledge form, sign it, and email it to us (firstname.lastname@example.org). See below for the rationale behind this initiative. (For PASSOP followers in South Africa, it is also useful to read through the structure of the membership system.)
-Towards a community-based human rights movement
“Be the change you want to see in the world.” -Gandhi
While it is a land of freedom and opportunity for some people, South Africa is also a difficult and harsh place for many others. The poor and the marginalized are those that suffer the most under the crippling inequality that plagues this country.
Immigrants are among the most marginalized groups of people in South Africa. They are acutely under-represented in labour unions, civil society and community activism efforts, and not represented at all politically. This lack of representation leaves them with compromised access to education, health care, labour rights, shelter, and even the most basic human rights and dignity. Immigrants are therefore among the most vulnerable and most widely exploited groups in this country, and are often made the victims of targeted hate crimes and xenophobic aggression.
How much longer will we stand by and accept this fate?
Enough is enough.
PASSOP’s dream is to be more than just an organization. We want to become a community-based human rights movement; an assembly of informed and empowered members that adhere to the same set of values and guiding principles and are actively engaged in their communities to influence positive change.
The PASSOP movement is based on the premise that ‘united we stand, but divided we fall’. PASSOP believes that solidarity is strength, that unity is power. Our voices will be louder when we unite to action and our impact will be greater when we join hands to advocate for positive change in the society. The voices of many unified by a single message and held together within a singular movement is what can twist the arm of the strong and turn the wheels of change.
The change we want to see is towards: 1) a better realization of people’s rights; 2) greater integration between South Africans and foreign nationals; 3) a more progressive and welcoming immigration policy; and 4) more equality between the powerful and the marginalized. Together, as PASSOP members, we will strive to achieve these changes.
1) Information is power and an informed person is an empowered one. Through this platform we will educate, inform and train members. Too often are people’s rights trampled on because they don’t know that they have them, or how to stand up for their rights. This has to change. An informed, conscientious society where everyone is well aware of their inalienable rights is what PASSOP strives to achieve.
2) Solidarity is strength. Believing in and pledging allegiance to PASSOP’s vision, mission and values is essential for every member of the movement. A PASSOP member is an ambassador of peace and a voice of positive change. We believe that in order to increase tolerance, understanding and improving co-habitation in communities, it is absolutely vital for immigrants to become more integrated and involved in communities. This movement aims to integrate communities for the sustainability of peace, harmony and tolerance by creating avenues and structures through which members can more actively engage their community.
3) Unity increases influence. We will become a platform in which all of our voices will be heard and our actions will become powerful. Together we will change the view that many South Africans have of foreigners, and we will challenge the rhetoric of how South Africa addresses immigration. When you add your voice to this movement you add your strength to PASSOP’s ability to open doors and to advocate for positive changes in South Africa’s immigration policy.
4) Equality is our goal. An impoverished immigrant should have the same rights and opportunities as a rich white South African, but this is not the current reality. We need to stop fighting with other poor people over the crumbs, and shift our focus to demand why there is such high inequality, discrimination and injustice. Exploitative bosses need to be brought to justice and unfair practices must be abolished.
While these goals are ambitious, together we can achieve much progress towards realizing them.