The Peace and Justice Service in Latin America (SERPAJ AL website) is a Latin-American organization. It is opened to all cultures, visions and ethical contributions in the human processes of liberation and development. Its major commitment is the respect of life as a supreme value and the construction of peace as a fruit of justice.
The contribution of SERPAJ is rooted in the theory and practice of Active Non Violence (NOVA). It rejects social indifference, religious fatalism and political conformity.
The Peace and Justice Service was officially founded in Medellín, Colombia in 1974. The Argentinean Adolfo Perez Esquivel, winner of the Nobel Peace Prize in 1980, was the first to coordinate the Movement.
SERPAJ is now working in 13 countries; four in Central America: Mexico, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Panama, and six in South America: Ecuador, Brazil (restructuring), Paraguay, Chile, Argentina and Uruguay. Three groups in Guatemala, Salvador, and Colombia are in the process of forming National Secretariats.
Since its founding, SERPAJ has strengthened its links with the Peace and Human Rights movement in North America, Europe, Asia and Africa. SERPAJ has several groups of friends in Europe: Paris, Vienna, Zurich, Brussels, Rome and Barcelona.
SERPAJ-AL has a consultative status at ECOSOC and UNESCO since 1987. The same year, it received the UNO prize "Messenger of Peace" and the Friends of the UNO prize "Common - Unit", as well as the UNESCO prize of Education for Peace.
GOALS AND LINES OF ACTION
In response to globalization, the National Secretariats and groups in formation, developed programs of action according to their needs . They support different social sectors and use various creative forms of intervention and direct non-violent actions, based on the following themes:
Education for peace and human rights.
Ecumenical and inter-religious dialogue.
Demilitarization and construction of alternative power (including objection of conscience and warlike disarmament as well as minds disarmament).
Prevention, managing and resolution of conflicts.
Fight against impunity and authoritarian vestiges.
Incorporation and recognition of the multiethnic and cultural diversity.
Defense and promotion of human rights.
Promotion of community processes that foster values of solidarity and cooperation, generating alternatives towards a Culture of Peace and a social, political and economic participation.
As unique permanent continental organ, the Latin-American Coordination coordinates (Executive board), impuls and facilitates the actions developed in every country. SERPAJ has been existing for more than 30 years, thanks to the work of a Latin-American Coordination, which has stimulated common actions all through the continent.
As a Latin-American organization, part of the social movement for Peace, Human Rights and Active Non Violence, SERPAJ-AL is committed to the processes of transformation and liberation from and with the excluded people of Latin America.
Five strategic lines of action, to which the LAC and the National Secretariats will try to give content and development:
Education for a Culture of Peace and Human Rights
Defense and Promotion of Human Rights in an integral way, emphatically in the Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
Demilitarization and construction of Alternative Power
Democracy and Social Movements Participation Internal Strengthening of SERPAJ’s Continental Network as a Movement.
Building and developing thematic networks:
Demilitarization and Construction of Alternative Power
Education for Peace and Human Rights
Defense and Promotion of Human Rights
"Mesoamerican" on Commercial Agreements and Military Plans1 (FTAA / FTAs/ Colombia Plan / Puebla Panama Plan).
Peace and No to War
Against the Free Trade Agreements FTAA/ FTAs/ PPP2
For the Non Payment of the Foreign Debt.
ILAPAZ: To impulse the Latin-American Institute of Active Non Violence, Education for Peace and Human Rights, as a continental instance built and developed from the experiences of the National Secretariats, the Thematic Networks, the Honorary International Committee and other similar efforts in Latin America and the World.