Keeping killer robots fictional

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Project Ploughshares team with killer robots sign
Through the #12days4good campaign, the Kindred Credit Union Centre for Peace Advancement (CPA) is advancing peace with local organizations by giving back to the community during the holiday season. #12days4good is a social media campaign first launched by House of Friendship as an invitation to give back to the community for 12 consecutive days in December. In 2017, Kindred Credit Union began spearheading the campaign to encourage thoughtful and intentional philanthropy in the Kitchener-Waterloo Region.

Today was the CPA’s ‘do-gooder’ day. For our good deed, we co-hosted an internal event with Core Collaborator Project Ploughshares on lethal autonomous weapons systems, or ‘killer robots.’ Branka Marijan, Program Officer at Ploughshares who does advocacy work in this area, led the discussion and shared about the ethical implications of these weapons systems with CPA participants. Marijan says,

“There is nothing inevitable about the way technological advancements are used. In March 2019, countries will be meeting at the United Nations in Geneva and have an opportunity to start discussions on a legally binding instrument banning autonomous weapons. Weapons that are able to select and engage targets on their own cross a clear moral, ethical and legal line and need to be banned.” 

At the event, Branka also shared about an advocacy campaign Project Ploughshares is a part of called the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots. This campaign is a global coalition with 86 members in 49 countries working to ban fully autonomous weapons systems and retain meaningful human control over the use of force. Through the campaign, technology companies, individual experts, and non-governmental organizations can join the coalition to demonstrate their support for a pre-emptive ban on killer robots.

Following the presentation, CPA participants had the opportunity to offer their support for a ban on these weapons systems by participating in a photo campaign, and learned about other ways they can engage with and be an advocate for this issue. Intended to provide an opportunity for citizens to have their perspectives heard, Ploughshares is now extending the invitation to participate and advocate beyond the CPA community.

The CPA is grateful to be a part of Kindred Credit Union’s #12days4good campaign and is encouraged by the work of this year’s participants to create positive impact in the community in diverse and meaningful ways.

To participate in the photo campaign, post a selfie with the ban killer robots poster on social media or share it with Project Ploughshares on Twitter.

Want to know what else the CPA has been up to in December? Subscribe to our monthly e-newsletter to find out!