News & Views

Peace in Yemen Please!

With Remembrance Day happening recently in commemoration of the lives lost and sacrificed during war it begs the question, what is happening now!? At the moment the world's worst humanitarian crisis is unfolding in Yemen as thousands stand in favour of peace. To me the hypocrisy of politicians saying “lest we forget” as they continue to sell arms to oppressive regimes such as Saudi Arabia who are leading the air strikes across Yemen is astounding.

A short history of the conflict

The conflict began in 2015 following the Saudi Arabian led military intervention in Yemen. Since then, UN agencies state that around 14 million people are faced with famine within the country. However, hope for Yemen was postponed as UN peace talks were pushed back recently to the end of the year just as the World Food Programme (WFP) stressed that it is the final call for Yemen. WFP state that “The violence must stop now to give Yemen a chance to pull back from the brink. Unless it does, this will become a country of living ghosts, its people reduced to sacks of bones.”

Humanitarian Aid, although extremely helpful, can only go so far in the case of this conflict. WFP draw attention to the fact that  “Humanitarians can only do so much in the face of relentless bombing and unconscionable war tactics that spare no one.” Yemen is already blockaded by the Saudi intervention and with Britain being one of it’s biggest arms suppliers the UK is complicit in this attack and the block of humanitarian assistance.

While politicians attended the various memorial ceremonies this weekend, the UK continues their arms business as normal. Since the war began in 2015, the UK has supplied nearly 5 billion worth of arms trade to Saudi and the relationship does not seem to be threatened, despite the growing humanitarian emergency and the recent controversies involving the murder of journalist, Jamal Khashaggi.


Jamal Khashaggi was brutally dismembered and killed by a 15- man hit squad at the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul which caused an international stir and applied immense pressure on those members supplying Saudi to withdraw. To date, only Germany has halted their arms deal with Saudi due to the misconduct. Some viewed the current pause from the US in refueling the aircrafts currently bombing Yemen civilians as a success, However, this was at the request of Saudi Arabia who claim they can handle it themselves now. Although this cuts of the US from any direct connection with the Yemen War, The US still values Saudi as an ally and they continue to be a major supplier of munitions to the Saudi Air Force and provide military intelligence. Despite encouragement from Germany, Britain, France and Spain remain locked in with their arms deals with Saudi.

UK Foreign Secretary, Jeremy Hunt, is hopeful for peace in Yemen. Recently addressing the UK relationship with Saudi he tweeted that there was a “vital need to seize the moment in Yemen and stop the famine and cholera intensifying”. However, despite this there seems to be no immediate urgency from the UK government to end their arms deal with Saudi Arabia, nor from any other country.

How can you help ease the Yemen Crisis?

Sign the Campaign Against Arms Trade petition:

https://www.caat.org.uk/get-involved/act-now/petition/stop-arming-saudi-petition

Donate to the World Food Programme Today:

http://cdn.wfp.org/donate/?lead_source=2018-wfp-donatenow-hp&form_tag=2018-wfp-donatenow-hp&_ga=2.113844420.2105956203.1542046983-360972196.1542046983

Unicef, Doctors Without Borders, Save the Children and the International Rescue Committee are also groups working directly within Yemen and can use your support!

https://www.unicefusa.org/mission/emergencies/child-refugees/crisis-in-yemen

https://www.msf.org/yemen

https://www.savethechildren.org/us/what-we-do/where-we-work/greater-middle-east-eurasia/yemen?cid=Paid_Search

https://www.rescue.org/country/yemen#how-does-the-irc-help-in-yemen

 

Spread the message and encourage others to join the campaign today!

The Rise of the White and Purple Poppies

This weekend saw a Remembrance Day more inclusive than ever before, with a flurry of red, white and purple poppies throughout the country. White poppy sales broke records, with sales of over 120,000, this being the highest figure since the establishment of the white poppy in 1933. This year also saw the rise of the purple poppy, with 2018 being it’s biggest success since it first appeared two years ago. The red poppy represents British veterans of war, the white all victims of war since and current across all nations and the purple includes service animals past and present.

Alongside the mainstream remembrance ceremonies, hundreds attended alternatives events across the country where white poppy wreaths were laid in favour of international peace and in memory of all victims of all wars.  Peace Pledge Union Hosted a large ceremony in London, alongside other peace groups such as Peace News and Network for Peace.

(Photo of white poppies wreaths laid in London, taken and posted by Peace Pledge Union)


Other alternative ceremonies took place across the country, with Brighton Peace and Environment Centre hosting an alternative meditation at the peace statue in Hove, with other notable events taking place in Leeds, Bradford, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Pembroke, Aberstwyth, Exeter, Bath, Stowmarket, Saddleworth, Leamington Spa, Peterborough, Bridgewater and Bury St Edmunds.

The white poppy saw major success in sales this year with more people than ever before choosing to wear and promote the message of the white poppy. Sheffield Lord, Mayor Magid Magid received support upon his choice to wear the White Poppy on the day as he chose to mourn all victims of war, not just British participants. In Dublin,  a small Quaker group running a white poppy event received immense public backing from their invitation to join them in making white poppies for part of an art installation for Armistice Day,  the group claimed that well over 200 people assisted in making poppies for the project which was a great success for the group.

 

Alongside the popularity of the white poppy, this year saw an increase in awareness of the purple poppy which seeks to pay tribute to animals from the First World War, those who have been in service since and those who serve today. The war effort of service animals in the FWW was paramount, with up to 8 million horses having died following the war. Various service animals continue to serve today and the purple poppy aims to share their message.   

The purple poppy campaign hopes to ensure these service animals are not forgotten and forever remembered alongside their human counterparts. Having only began in 2016, the campaign has made substantial progress in promoting their message and support for service animals. 

 

Exeter Cathedral paid tribute to service animals of FWW with this touching display and shared the images

Details of the Murphy Army’s Purple Poppy Campaign work can be found on their website here: https://purplepoppycampaign.org/#campaign

This weekend shined light onto the fact that people are spreading their tributes not only to the First World War Veterans, but are seeking to not forget all the victims of war previous and ongoing and this message of unity offers a hope for future international peace.

Remembrance Sunday - What Poppy Should You Wear?

As remembrance Sunday fast approaches, debates over the correct use of the red poppy and what it represents arise, alongside further discussions on the use of the white poppy as an alternative.

Over recent years, the red poppy has come under scrutiny with some feeling that is has become a political movement that is used to justify war and so some choose instead to wear the white poppy.

So what are the different poppies and what do they represent?

What is the red poppy?

The red poppy is sold by the Royal British Legion (RBL) and has been since 1921. The red poppy was established in honour of British Armed Forces who died during the First World War (FWW). RBL view the red poppy as a symbol of hope and remembrance, the use of the poppy itself was inspired by John McCrae’s poem In Flanders Field. It is seen to be a lasting memorial of the suffering in the FWW and a dedication to a generation who faced tragedy and loss. The red poppy is reference to a particular time in history that shaped our world today and a time that RBL believe should be highlighted and commemorated.

What is the problem with the red poppy?

Some argue that the red poppy is a political message, and one that promotes and justifies war. The Authors of Blood Stained Poppy, Kevin Rooney and James Heartfield, argue that Britain’s wars are nothing to be celebrated and claim that the red poppy is a non- neutral, political movement. In the past, the red poppy has been manipulated by political movements such as Britain First to promote their cause.

The Royal British Legion contend that the red poppy is not a reflection of any political or religion movements and nor is it a symbol for death or justification for war.

What is the White Poppy?

The white poppy was first created by the Co-operative Women’s guild in 1933, and is now distributed by the pacifist organisation Peace Pledge Union (PPU). The white poppy more widely represents international peace and is dedicated as a memory to all victims across all wars, including any war which is still ongoing. PPU choose to not focus on one war or group of victims but to instead pay attention to the many civilians who have died or suffered in any war. This includes those affected with mental health as a result of conflict, those who have been made sick or homeless and the family and communities torn by war, together with those who have been killed or imprisoned for refusing to fight and for resisting war.

What are the problems with the white poppy?

Debate around the use of the white poppy claims that it is dismissive of the suffering that happened in the First World World and disrespects the thousands who sacrificed their lives to protect our security and freedom. Others also question what the donations for the white poppy go towards and whether or not the funds raised affect those raised for the Royal British Legion.

PPU say that they support the remembrance of the British Armed Forces just as the the RBL and they state that they distribute white poppies to promote remembrance for all victims of war, including the First World War. PPU also say that funds raised from the sales of the white poppy go to a variation of local peace based charities and campaigns as well as towards national campaigning and educational work on anti-militarism and non-violent approaches.

Which poppy is the right poppy for me?

What poppy you choose to wear is a matter of personal preference, there is no “correct” poppy to wear. The Royal British Legion see no conflict between the sales of their own poppy alongside the Peace Pledge Union distribution of the white poppy, the same way that the PPU supports the values of the RBL. With regards to the matter, The Royal British Legion state that  “Wearing a poppy is a personal choice and reflects individual and personal memories.” The Peace Pledge Union say that “people who wear white poppies hold a variety of views and opinions and disagree with each other on many subjects. What they share is a desire to remember all the victims of war, to challenge militarism and to stand up for peace”.

Red poppies for sale: https://www.poppyshop.org.uk/
White poppies for sale: https://peace-pledge-union.myshopify.com/

How to be eco- friendly and fashionable

Skipping out on using plastic bottles or swapping our cleaning products to greener brands is simple enough. But dressing economically and ethically is still seen as a challenge, yet fashion remains one of the worlds biggest polluters and is up their with oil and coal as a damaging source.

With an estimated £140 million of clothing going into landfills each year, it is not something to go unnoticed. Stacey Dooley’s recent documentary, Fashion’s Dirty Secrets, addresses this issue. At one point, Stacey spoke to Lucy at the Fashioned From Nature Exhibition who explained that “Globally, we’re producing over 100 billion new garments from new fibres every single year, and the planet cannot sustain that”. 


This rapid roll over has meant that the value of unused clothes in wardrobes is estimated at £30 billion. Almost half of the clothes we own are made of cotton, shops such as Asos and Zara pride on their products being made of the material, even using it as a selling point. However, few people are aware that cotton is responsible for one of the biggest environmental tragedies. Cotton has been being made sustainably for thousands of years. But with the recent high demand, it is now being created on an industrial scale and the chemical and water usage has rocketed causing whole rivers to drain and polluting some communities only water source.

So how can we minimise the problem?

Recycling your clothing is the most simple and easy step to be taken to ease this problem. Taking unwanted clothing to charity or running swap shops are easy to do. Also, mending or adjusting old clothing will minimise your need to replace or bin an item. Even if you’re not the an expert, it’s never too much to drop an item at a seamstress. A local ethical and sustainable clothing shop Revival, often hosts swap shop nights in their store. Check out their Facebook page for the next event. https://www.facebook.com/revivalcollective/. Or you can arrange one yourself with your friends and make a night of it!


Educating on the issue will help spread the message and undermine those fashion companies who are manipulating consumers into buying cotton products and who are promoting fast fashion. Popular Vlogger, Holly Gabrielle, is a passionate vegan and all around eco friendly. Together with her sister, the pair were discontent with the lack of economically and ethically friendly products. So instead, created their own brand of sustainable clothing. Holly has hundreds of young follows who will be able to follow her projects and be influenced by her cause. They only have one item at the moment, but with growing support small projects like this can grow and make friendly clothing the norm. Check out the brand here:


Sustainable clothing is no longer so difficult to find or over priced. Just last month, at London Fashion Week, designer double act Vin + Omi displayed various stylish fabrics created from cans, plastic and cow parsley. The brand has also previously created vegan ‘“leather” from chestnuts, and further plant based fabrics made from nettles, fireweed, parsley and horseradish. Their designs have been worn by many public figures including Michelle Obama, Kate Moss and Beyonce and they also collaborate with other famous designers such as Dior and Louis Vuitton to promote similar production. Check their website out here: http://www.vinandomi.com/bio/4594291683  

The company po-zu also sells sustainable shoes here:  https://po-zu.com/collections/womens-sale

GDPR - We got this!

we got this

Brighton Peace and Environment Centre is committed to protecting your privacy. This policy explains how we collect and use the personal information you provide to us whether online or via phone, mobile, e-mail, letter or other correspondence. We recommend that you read this policy in full, but if you do not have time, the main points are:

  • Your data is collected so that we can interact with you in order to tell you about our work.
  • We collect the minimum amount of data we need in order to do this.
  • Your data is stored securely on password protected computers and files in a locked and secure office.
  • We keep your data as required by law and in accordance with a file retention plan.
  • We are careful to ensure that we only retain data and contact people who would reasonably expect to hear from us; for example, they are a BPEC member, have attended events or donated, or are a potential or existing volunteer.
  • You can ask for your details to be removed from our mailing lists at any time. You are also entitled to a copy of the data we hold about you.

By using our website, any of our services, or providing us with any personal information we will assume you are agreeing to your information being used and disclosed in the ways described in this policy.

GDPR

The EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) effective from May 2018 gives all EU citizens more rights and protections for their personal data, to minimise the possibility of theft and fraud.

These regulations include provisions for the following areas:

  • The right to be informed: Companies must publish a privacy notice, in addition to explaining transparently how they use this personal data.
  • The right of access: Individuals will have the right to demand details of any of their data that a company may hold. This information must be provided within one month of request and there will normally be no charge to the individual.
  • The right to rectification: If a person’s data is incorrect or incomplete, he or she has the right to have it corrected. If the company that holds the information has passed any of that information to third parties, the company must inform the third party of the correction and inform the person which third parties have their personal data.
  • The right to be forgotten: A person may request the removal of his or her personal data in specific circumstances.
  • The right to restrict processing: Under certain circumstances, an individual can block the processing of his or her personal data.
  • The right to data portability: A person can access their data for their own use anywhere they prefer.
  • The right to object: A person can object to the use of their personal data for most purposes.

​We operate our Data protection in compliance with BS 10012:217: Specification for a personal information management system.

1.0   OUR CORE PRINCIPLES REGARDING USER PRIVACY AND DATA PROTECTION 

  • User privacy and data protection are inviolable human rights.
  • We have a duty of care to people contained within our data
  • Data is a liability: it should only be collected and processed when absolutely necessary
  • We despise spam in all its forms
  • We will never sell, rent or otherwise distribute or make public your personal information

2.0   RELEVANT LEGISLATION 

Alongside our charity and internal computer systems, this website is designed to comply with the following national and international legislation with regards to data protection and user privacy:

This site’s compliance with the above legislation, all elements of which are stringent in nature, means that this site is likely compliant with the data protection and user privacy legislation set out by many other countries and territories as well. If you are unsure about whether this site is compliant with your own country of residences’ specific data protection and user privacy legislation you should contact our data protection officer (details of whom can be found in section 9.0 below) for clarification.

3.0   PERSONAL INFORMATION AND WHY WE COLLECT IT 

In carrying out our day to day activities we process and store personal information relating to our supporters and we are therefore required to adhere to the requirements of the Data Protection Act 1998. We take our responsibilities under this act very seriously and we ensure the personal information we obtain is held, used, transferred and otherwise processed in accordance with that Act and all other applicable data protection laws and regulations including, but not limited to, the Privacy and Electronic Communication Regulations.

Our contacts database is held on a password protected computer in the locked and secure office. Regular backups are made of this onto encrypted memory sticks which are kept in a safe.

This website collects and uses personal information for the following reasons:

3.1 Site visitation tracking

Like most websites, this site uses Google Analytics to track user interaction. We use this data to determine the number of people using our site, to better understand how they find and use our web pages and to see their journey through the website.

Although Google Analytics records data such as your approximate geographical location, device, internet browser and operating system, none of this information personally identifies you to us. Google Analytics also records your computer’s IP address which could be used to personally identify you but Google do not grant us access to this. We consider Google to be a third party data processor (see section 6.0 below).

Google Analytics makes use of cookies, details of which can be found on Google’s developer guides here.

​Disabling cookies on your internet browser will stop Google Analytics from tracking any part of your visit to pages within this website.

​3.2 Our News and Events blog posts

Should you choose to add a comment to any posts that we have published on our news or events pages, the name and email address you enter with your comment will be saved to this website’s database, along with your computer’s IP address and the time and date that you submitted the comment. This information is only used to identify you as a contributor to the comment section of the respective blog post and is not passed on to any of the third party data processors detailed below. Only your name will be shown on the public-facing website.

Your comment and it’s associated personal data will remain on this site until we see fit to either remove the comment or remove the blog post. Should you wish to have the comment and it’s associated personal data deleted, please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. using the email address that you commented with.

If you are under 16 years of age you MUST obtain parental consent before posting a comment on our blog.

NOTE: You should avoid entering personally identifiable information to the actual comment field of any blog post comments that you submit on this website.

3.3 Contact Forms and Email Links

Should you choose to contact us please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., none of the data that you supply will be stored by this website or passed to / be processed by any of the third party data processors defined in section 6.0. Instead the data will be collated into an email and sent to us over the Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP).

3.4 Email newsletter

If you choose to join our email newsletter, this will normally be sent using Google Mail and your details will be added to our main contacts database. On occasion, we use MailChimp to send out information. In this instance, the email address that you submit to us may be forwarded to MailChimp. We consider MailChimp to be a third party data processor (see section 6.0 below). The email address that you submit will not be stored within this website’s own database but will be added to our main contact database, stored on site in the BPEC office.

If we are using MailChimp, your email address will remain within MailChimp’s database for as long as we continue to use MailChimp’s services for email marketing or until you specifically request removal from the list. You can do this by unsubscribing using the unsubscribe links contained in any email newsletters that we send you or by This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. When requesting removal via email, please send your email to us using the email account that is subscribed to the mailing list.

If you are under 16 years of age you MUST obtain parental consent before joining our email newsletter.

While your email address remains within the MailChimp database, you will receive periodic (approximately twice a year) newsletter-style emails from us.

4.0   CREDIT, DEBIT CARD PAYMENT INFORMATION 

We use PayPal to process personal data on our behalf. The third parties we use are PayPal.

Paypal process payments for any products purchased. We do not retain any financial information you may submit as part of the purchasing process.

PayPal monitor every transaction, 24/7 to prevent fraud, email phishing and identity theft. Every transaction is heavily guarded behind PayPal's advanced encryption. If something appears suspicious, their dedicated team of security specialists will identify suspicious activity and help protect you from fraudulent transactions.

5.0   ABOUT THIS WEBSITE'S SERVER

Our website is hosted on a server that is hosted in a UK data centre, and all data on this server is kept within the UK. 

6.0   OUR THIRD PARTY DATA PROCESSORS

We use a number of third parties to process personal data on our behalf. These third parties have been carefully chosen and all of them comply with the legislation set out in section 2.0. These third parties are based in the USA and are EU-U.S Privacy Shield compliant.

7.0   DATA BREACHES

In the event of a breach of security leading to the accidental or unlawful destruction, loss, alteration, unauthorised disclosure of, or access to, personal data, the Charity shall promptly assess the risk to people’s rights and freedoms and if appropriate report this breach to the ICO (more information on the ICO website).

8.0   YOUR RIGHTS

You have the right to:

  • request a copy of the information we hold about you;
  • update or amend the information we hold about you if it is wrong;
  • change your communication preferences at any time;
  • ask us to remove your personal information from our records;
  • raise a concern or complaint about the way in which your information is being used.

9.0   DATA PROTECTION OFFICER and DATA CONTROLLER

The data protection officer for Brighton Peace and Environment Centre is:

Mike Butler, Trustee

Brighton Peace and Environment Centre

39-41 Surrey St, Brighton BN1 3PB

01273 766610     This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

10.0   CHANGES TO OUR PRIVACY POLICY

This privacy policy may change from time to time inline with legislation or industry developments. We will not explicitly inform our clients or website users of these changes. Instead, we recommend that you check this page occasionally for any policy changes. Specific policy changes and updates are mentioned in the change log below. 

10.1 Change log

20/05/2018   -        Privacy policy instigated

Subcategories

Opening times

The office is normally open to the public at the following times:

Tues 12:30 - 3:30

Wed 12:30 - 5:30

Outside of these hours please leave a message on 01273-766610 or email info@bpec.org and we will contact you as soon as possible. 

DSCF0021 0

Social media

Web Facebook Metro iconsmWeb Twitter alt 2 Metro iconsmWeb Pinterest Metro iconsm

Support!