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584

Part Three

2430

Economic life

brings into play different interests, often op­

posed to one another. This explains why the conflicts that charac­

terize it arise.

216

Efforts should be made to reduce these conflicts

by negotiation that respects the rights and duties of each social

partner: those responsible for business enterprises, representatives

of wage-earners (for example, trade unions), andpublic authorities

when appropriate.

2431

The

responsibility of the state.

“Economic activity, especially

the activity of a market economy, cannot be conducted in an

institutional, juridical, or political vacuum. On the contrary, it

presupposes sure guarantees of individual freedom and private

property, as well as a stable currency and efficient public services.

Hence the principal task of the state is to guarantee this security, so

that those who work and produce can enjoy the fruits of their labors

and thus feel encouraged towork efficiently andhonestly. . . .Another

task of the state is that of overseeing and directing the exercise of

human rights in the economic sector. However, primary responsi­

bility in this area belongs not to the state but to individuals and to

the various groups and associations which make up society.”

217

2432

Those

responsible for business enterprises

are responsible to

society for the economic and ecological effects of their opera­

tions.

218

They have an obligation to consider the good of persons

and not only the increase of

profits.

Profits are necessary, however.

They make possible the investments that ensure the future of a

business and they guarantee employment.

2433

Access to employment

and to professions must be open to all

without unjust discrimination: men and women, healthy and dis­

abled, natives and immigrants.

219

For its part society should, ac­

cording to circumstances, help citizens find work and

employment.

220

2434

A

just wage

is the legitimate fruit of work. To refuse or

withhold it can be a grave injustice.

221

In determining fair pay both

the needs and the contributions of each person must be taken into

account. “Remuneration for work should guarantee man the op­

portunity to provide a dignified livelihood for himself and his

family on the material, social, cultural, and spiritual level, taking

216

CA

48.

217 Cf.

CA

37.

218 Cf.

LE

19; 22-23.

219 Cf.

CA

48.

220 Cf.

Lev

19:13;

Deut

24:14-15;

Jas

5:4.

221

GS

67 § 2.

1908

1883

2415

1867