Monday, May 23, 2011

Indigenous Women at UN: Priority for migrants and protection of Mother Earth

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UN FORUM by BEN POWLESS
 http://www.bsnorrell.blogspot.com/
Photos by Ben Powless, Mohawk

NEW YORK-- At the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, the Global Indigenous Women's Caucus established priorities for the advancement of Indigenous women. The Caucus supported the climate summit agreement in Cochabamba, Bolivia, for the protection of Mother Earth, and prioritized the need to safeguard migrant women. 

The Caucus also points out the global crisis of missing and murdered Indigenous women, and the violence caused by the militarization of Indigenous communities.

Further, the Caucus pointed out the alarming level of toxins in the environments of Indigenous women.
The International Organization on Migration (IOM) was urged to address the problems faced by Indigenous migrant women, including the alarming trend of forced trafficking of Indigenous women within and across national and international borders.

Excerpts from the Caucus statement:
Given that the Indigenous women’s migration is greatly increasing, we recommend the Permanent Forum requests the IOM to report on its progress achieved in addressing these issues. Furthermore, due to ongoing development projects, environmental degradation and economic crises, we request that special attention is given to Indigenous women’s rights. These rights include the right to move and migrate freely throughout their lands and territories (in the face of involuntary displacement and state relocation of Indigenous communities) and the right to live free from violence experienced by migrant Indigenous women and girls and, indeed, all cases of missing and murdered Indigenous women.

UN FORUM by BEN POWLESS
The key concerns that we will be highlighting throughout this session include: promotion of the leadership capacity of Indigenous women and girls (including within Indigenous governance systems and development programs and policies), the rights of Mother Earth (including the protection of sacred rights and the sacred right to water), violence caused by the militarization of Indigenous communities, the need for support of Indigenous women’s role in addressing environmental impacts and Climate Change (including reproductive health rights), food sovereignty, impact of extractive industries on Indigenous communities, unrepresented and unrecognized Indigenous peoples, migration and border issues. We would also like to support the examination of the following issues: using CEDAW to advance Indigenous women’s rights, the need for a standardized interpretation of free, prior and informed consent consistent with the UN Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, the Doctrine of Discovery and the proposed World Conference on Indigenous Peoples.

The Global Indigenous Women’s Caucus endorses and recommends the UN Permanent Forum to consider the following:
1) the “Position on Women and REDD+” by the Indigenous Environmental Network
2) the statement on the right to water and Indigenous peoples submitted by the American Indian Law Alliance and Seventh Generation Fund for Indigenous Development
3) the “People’s Agreement of Cochabamba,” the final document of the World’s People’s Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth (April 22, 2010)
 4) the proposal by the Global Indigenous Caucus and the North American Indigenous Peoples Caucus for an Expert Group meeting to address the impacts on environmental toxins on the health of Indigenous women, including their reproductive health, in 2012 before the UN Permanent Forum’s 11th Session.

READ FULL INDIGENOUS WOMEN'S CAUCUS STATEMENT:
http://censored-news.blogspot.com/2011/05/un-global-indigenous-womens-caucus.html
PEOPLES AGREEMENT, COCHABAMBA, BOLIVIA: WORLD PEOPLES CONFERENCE ON CLIMATE CHANGE AND THE RIGHTS OF MOTHER EARTH:
http://bsnorrell.blogspot.com/2010/04/bolivia-peoples-agreement.html

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