PA needs to be more proac­tive on plan­ning ‘rather than oc­cu­py­ing its time pro­cess­ing de­vel­op­ment ap­pli­ca­tions’, says Church

● Calls for more re­search to over­come in­fer­til­ity ‘with­out jeop­ar­dis­ing hu­man dig­nity’

The Malta Independent on Sunday - - NEWS -

The Church En­vi­ron­ment Com­mis­sion (KA) yes­ter­day pub­lished a po­si­tion pa­per on the en­vi­ron­ment and hu­man life on the oc­ca­sion of the end of the Church’s Season of Cre­ation.

In the pa­per, the KA noted the fast change that the country’s phys­iog­nomy is un­der­go­ing: “Malta has be­come one huge build­ing site. De­spite a lot of talk about sus­tain­abil­ity, it seems that the en­vi­ron­men­tal im­pact of the con­struc­tion in­dus­try is not be­ing given the im­por­tance it de­serves. The KA feels that it is high time the Plan­ning Author­ity becomes more proac­tive with regard to plan­ning rather than oc­cu­py­ing its time pro­cess­ing de­vel­op­ment ap­pli­ca­tions. In this re­spect, the in­volve­ment of local coun­cils and con­sul­ta­tion with the res­i­dents of the area con­cerned are in­dis­pens­able.”

True de­vel­op­ment goes be­yond fi­nan­cial gain, the Com­mis­sion said, “and should safe­guard the qual­ity of life and dig­nity of one and all. Gen­uine de­vel­op­ers com­mit them­selves to pro­mot­ing the com­mon good and there­fore, among other things, en­sure that the work­ers un­der their re­spon­si­bil­ity are treated with dig­nity. In the light of what Pope Fran­cis says about work, the KA con­sid­ers as in­ap­pro­pri­ate the ob­jec­tions raised by the com­mer­cial sec­tor in our is­lands with regard to the min­i­mum wage, ma­ter­nity leave, the em­ploy­ment of peo­ple with spe­cial needs and the re­stric­tions on sick leave ben­e­fit. “

The KA said it does not agree with the notion of gaug­ing the progress of our country by how much it has come to re­sem­ble other coun­tries.

“Un­for­tu­nately, any means to reach this end may be­come jus­ti­fi­able, even the vi­o­la­tion of hu­man dig­nity. Up­hold­ing our val­ues and boldly deny­ing any means of hu­man ex­ploita­tion should be our stance in local and in­ter­na­tional fora.”

Church calls for more re­search to over­come in­fer­til­ity with­out jeop­ar­dis­ing hu­man dig­nity

The Com­mis­sion also shared some thoughts in­spired by Pope Fran­cis’ En­cycli­cal Laudato Si, on the value of life and the need to re­spect it in all its as­pects.

It said it be­lieves that Malta should cher­ish and safe­guard those val­ues that have al­ways dis­tin­guished it as a na­tion, “and that local, na­tional, re­gional and global gov­ern­ments should pro­vide the nec­es­sary pro­tec­tion to the vul­ner­a­ble, espe­cially those who are un­able to de­fend them­selves be­cause of their so­cial, phys­i­cal or psy­cho­log­i­cal con­di­tion and this in a time when many end up ac­cept­ing fal­la­cies and mis­con­cep­tions pre­sented in the me­dia, which are nothing but a dis­tor­tion of re­al­ity,” the KA said.

“Recog­nis­ing the value of life im­plies the ap­pre­ci­a­tion of the dig­nity of all forms of life, which stim­u­lates us to ac­knowl­edge its vul­ner­a­bil­ity and do ev­ery­thing pos­si­ble to pro­tect it. This prin­ci­ple should ap­ply not only when the life of an­i­mals and plants/trees is threat­ened but also, and par­tic­u­larly, with ref­er­ence to hu­man life in its very early stages.

“Dur­ing the de­bates about the very early stages of life, the KA can­not ac­cept rhetoric aimed at elim­i­nat­ing guilt feel­ings by hid­ing the truth. It strongly be­lieves that a hu­man be­ing’s rights need to be re­spected, ir- re­spec­tive of size, stage of growth and de­vel­op­ment, phys­i­cal or men­tal abil­ity and con­di­tion of health. In a just and demo­cratic so­ci­ety, the rights of ev­ery­body are safe­guarded, whether one is an adult or a vul­ner­a­ble crea­ture that can­not de­fend it­self.

“In this as­pect, the KA fears that, if we are not care­ful, there is the risk that the phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal and med­i­cal in­dus­try will end up giv­ing pri­or­ity to eco­nomic in­ter­ests rather than to moral rules and val­ues. One needs to in­vest more in re­search that ex­plores meth­ods which would over­come in­fer­til­ity with­out jeop­ar­dis­ing hu­man dig­nity.”

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