Latest news

January 2024

We are pleased that, thanks to your generous donations, our crowdfunder for a peacegarden at Bridgend Farmhouse raised almost £4,500. Together with a few successful small grant applications, we now have the funding we need for the first year’s development of the peace garden.

November 2023

On Remembrance Sunday we laid peace poppies at the peace tree in Princes street gardens to remember all victims of war and to call for peace.

We also held an alternative remembrance event hosted by Edinburgh Quakers and their meeting house on Victoria Street, with around 50 participants. Thanks to everyone who came to the alternative remembrance day and for the personal and moving contributions. Also thanks very much to Protest in Harmony for the songs. Heartening to know there is so much support for peace in these conflict ridden times!

October 2023

P&J and Secure Scotland were glad to support Edinburgh Action for Palestine commemoration of the Al Dalwayima massacre and on the ongoing Nakba at the memorial stone in the Meadows. Followed by Sunday lunch at Words & Actions for Peace. And it was good to meet there and support Sharyn Locke in her hunger strike and call for a Ceasefire outside the Scottish parliament.

A very enjoyable coffee morning with Greenham Women Everywhere. Protest in Harmony dropped in to share some songs, and other came to share memories of their time involved with Faslane and Greenham peace camps

P&J have signed up to the statement for a #CeasefireNow in the Israeli Occupied Territories of Palestine. Read the full statement here

September 2023

Great evening at the Carnall Peace Award 

Thanks to everyone who came on Wednesday evening to a fascinating discussion about the conflicts we face in different communities from Palestine to Scotland – and the great work of Sikh Sangog, One Community Scotland and the Scottish Centre for Conflict Resolution – Cyrenians as well as our inspiring Carnall Peace Award winners Wi’am, the Conflict Transformation Centre in Bethlehem, Palestine.
Hoping to keep in touch with these inspiring people and organisations. Recording of the evenings’ discussions will be online soon!
 

Carnall Peace Award 2023: From Palestine to Scotland – Resolving Community Conflict

Wednesday 20 September, 6.30pm – 9pm

Book your place for the Edinburgh event, or online

Peace and Justice host an annual event, the Carnall Peace Award, awarded to a prominent organisation in the area of peacebuilding.  This year it is being awarded to Wi’am, a Palestinian conflict resolution centre in Bethlehem.

As well as a presentation from Wi’am about their project, the event will consider conflict resolution in the community, how it is done differently in different places and situations from Bethlehem to Edinburgh, and what we can learn from different practices.

Wi’am use both Western models of conflict resolution as well as an Arabic model, Sulha. We are delighted that Zoughbi Alzoughbi, founder and director of the conflict resolution centre in Bethlehem will speak to our audience in Edinburgh and online about their project and about Sulha.

There will also be speakers from Scotland. Jasmin Aden from One Community Scotland (Scottish Violence Reduction Unit) will talk about her work with young ‘New Scots’; Trishna Singh OBE, will speak about the work of her agency Sikh Sanjog with the Bhat Sikh community in Leith and there will be a speaker from the Scottish Centre for Conflict Resolution.

Click here to book

Peace walk & AGM September 2023
Our peace walk on Sunday 3 September took us from our first base as P&J in St. John’s church, to our current base at Ratcliffe Terrace with stops along the way with talks at places significant for peace work in Edinburgh.
 
It was particularly great to view the handkerchief tree in Princes Street Garden that marks the beginning of our creation of a space for those who have opposed war through the centuries in the gardens.
Lovely to see so many faces old and new – thanks for coming!

We were very sad to hear of the death of Brian Larkin at the end of August 2023. Brian was coordinator of the P&J over 10 years until he had to retire last year due to ill health. He was a passionate peace campaigner, an incredible hard worker, and a caring and listening person who was great and inspiring to work with. He will be missed, and our thoughts and condolences go to Jane, Fiona and his family.

We marked Conscientious Objectors Day on May 15 with a rally on Princes Street. Thanks especially to Protest in Harmony for some great tunes, and to Anne McCullagh-D-Lyske from Conscience for compering the event.

 

Grab Sunday lunch with us!

Sunday 26 March, 12-2pm at 58 Ratcliffe Terrace

A drop in friendly and free lunch on the last Sunday of every month, starting on 26 March. All welcome!

Meet Peace & Justice and Secure Scotland and have a chat over soup and bread – all welcome. Its helpful (but not essential) for organising catering if you can email contact@wordsandactions.scot to say you are coming.

The organiser is Anne McCullagh-d’Lyske, Words & Actions Volunteer

(Anne also is Coordinator for Conscience Peace Tax Witness, in Scotland)

Standing for Peace in Difficult Time

March 2nd 7.00pm – 8.30pm

A Secure Scotland panel event at Words and Actions for Peace 

58 Ratcliffe Terrace EDINBURGH EH9 1ST

Just under a year ago, shortly after the invasion of Ukraine, Secure Scotland hosted a small reflective discussion, lightly moderated by Secure Scotland Core Group member David Mackenzie under the title ”Standing for Peace in Difficult Times”. We tried to share our understanding and consider what steps we might take individually and collectively to better understand and support efforts for building peace rather than waging war.

In consideration of what has happened since, and to follow up on the original conversation, we have invited three panellists to join us in returning to the same theme. Senator Tom Clonan, a former peacekeeper with the Irish army, Dr Lesley Morrison from Medact Scotland, and Marian Pallister, chair of Pax Christi Scotland. The event will again be moderated by David Mackenzie for Secure Scotland. We will invite parliamentarians and other decision-makers to attend, and this is not necessarily a call for protest or mass action, but more an effort to share insights and learn.

Light refreshments will be available

For more information about the event or the speakers, please email contact@wordsandactions.scot

Brian Larkin retires as P&J Coordinator

Brian Larkin has today 10 June stepped back from his role as Coordinator of Peace & Justice (Scotland).  He was our Coordinator for a decade, during which time its work grew and flourished in partnerships across Scotland and beyond. He additionally oversaw many difficult times, including most recently the Covid-19 Pandemic. He has taken medical retirement following a recent major operation from which he is recovering well.  However his state of health sadly prevents his return to work at Peace & Justice. We are aware that there are many people who may wish to make enquiries or pass on good wishes to Brian and his family, and we will be updating our members and supporters about Brian’s situation and future plans.

Meanwhile you can find more about Brian and his work here.

The Trustees are currently consulting with Janet Fenton, (former Coordinator) on development and partnership possibilities to build Peace & Justice’s capacity as a national organisation.

Consequences Exhibition Summer 2022

Our Consequences exhibition that portrayed the impact of war and nuclear weapons on people and planet through photos, drawings, paintings, sculptures and short films took place in the summer of 2022 at the Out of the Blue Drill Hall. It included a launch event with poetry from Scottish and Ukrainian writers, and a final event in which we showed ‘The Vow’ – a documentary about Hiroshima Survivor, peace activist and Nobel Prize winner Setsuko Thurlow. Consequences was the culmination of our peace cranes project which began with the collection of 140,000 origami paper cranes from around the world over 5 years, to remember each victim of the US bombing of Hiroshima in 1945. The cranes were displayed at part of an  exhibition at St. John’s Church in the summer/autumn of 2021 and Consequences was a follow-up exhibition to this.


Advocating for disarmament

Peace & Justice is one of the civil society groups that campaigned successfully for an international treaty banning nuclear weapons. ICAN, the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons, of which we are a partner – won the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize for this work. Our Peace Cranes project of contemporary art engages people in their communities to remember all those killed by the Hiroshima bomb and raises awareness of the Nuclear Weapons Ban Treaty and Don’t Bank on the Bomb Scotland campaigns.

Consequences is part of our Peace Cranes project which began online on 6 August 2020 with a series of films, talks and theatre commemorating the 75th anniversary of the nuclear catastrophe caused by the US atomic bombing of the Japanese civilian populations in Hiroshima and in Nagasaki in August 1945. Tune in our 2020 programme here. Our project continued with Peace Cranes and Code Red – our exhibitions and events about peace, people and planet held across Edinburgh 6 August – 26 November 2021 which attracted over 15,000 visitors.

Our Peace Cranes project culminates with Consequences at Edinburgh’s Out of the Blue Drill Hall, an exhibition and events free and open to all 16 August – 3 September 2022. Through artist’s films, photography, sound art and poetry, we will explore the humanitarian and environmental consequences posed by the Russian invasion of Ukraine, together with the nuclear power accidents at Chernobyl, Kyshtym and Fukushima, as well as the dropping and testing of the atomic bomb in Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Kazakhstan and Marshall Islands. 

Check out the new reports Nuclear Weapons, the Climate and our Environment and the Stop Funding the End of World: A guide to nuclear weapons divestment in Scotland and find out how you can take action to promote divestment.

We’re advocating for justice for Asylum Seekers and Refugees. Check out our new Briefings: Lack of Access to Justice for Asylum Seekers in Dungavel Detention Centre sets out the serious injustices for asylum seekers held by the Home Office in Scotland and find out how you can get involved as a volunteer advocate. Refugees on the Move looks at the difficulties faced by refugees on their journeys to and after they arrive in Britain.

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