Call to Action – November 25th – International Day for the Elimination of all Forms of Violence against Women.
Harare – October 28th, 2020: Today, November 25th – La Via Campesina calls to affirm Food Sovereignty as a concrete measure of the States to put an end to violence against women in the countryside and in the cities, just as it is stated in the Declaration on the Rights of Peasants in its Art. 4. LVC denounces the structural violence of extractive capitalism and patriarchy, especially during this crisis that hits women and LGBTQ communities the hardest, as well as the working class as a whole, increasing the levels of exploitation with double and even triple working days, worsening their living conditions and with severe setbacks in matter of rights, even in the midst of this pandemic.
Not only has COVID 19 caused a horrifying number of deaths worldwide, it has also lead to a spike in the rates of femicide as a result of lock down measures that left millions of women and children with no escape from their aggressors. This is one of the worst aspects of this crisis. COVID 19 is also increasing the workload for women as a result of remote schooling and the needs associated with the care taking of family members, such as the elderly and ill.
During the pandemic, the rates of sexual and physical violence against women and children have risen horrifically. Pregnant little girls forced to give birth, assassinations of leaders, advocates and defenders of territories. Millions of women in rural and urban areas have entered the escalating figures of poverty, sub employment, unemployment and hunger.
In the meantime, the States who claim to represent them continue implementing extractive, conservative and neoliberal policies that only worsen the violence and result in serious regressions of rights. La Via Campesina has denounced that even during a health crisis of this magnitude, the States have taken advantage of the situation to hand over land to transnational companies and large landholders. This has lead to higher numbers of evictions in several countries and a worsening of the criminalisation of peasants.
More than ever, this crisis has made us reflect on the importance of solidarity and organisation. This is why we salute all women and LGBTQ communities who stand in resistance in all the different territories: the Zapatistas, the Turkish, Kurdish and Palestinian women and LGBTQ populations. Be it in the seashores, the plains, the mountains, the jungles, the forests, the countryside and the cities, we all come together to act globally demanding an end to all forms of violence against women and children, for a just, egalitarian and peaceful society.
We acknowledge all the actions of tangible solidarity that organised women have been sustaining worldwide, especially during the pandemic, such as the production of healthy food, food donations, people’s and ancestral health brigades, community soup kitchens against hunger, collective community workdays focused on sanitation, peasant markets, establishment of barter systems and other forms of popular and solidarity economy. These are concrete examples of self organisation and collective work. #Time to Transform
We demand that the States recognise and value the potential of peasant women to ensure Food Sovereignty. The peasantry continues to be the main source of food for the peoples of the world, whereas the industrial system of transnational corporations has proven incapable of meeting minimum sanitary, safety and sustainability conditions.
Worldwide women produce half the food, yet own less than 15% of the land, of which barely 2% belong to developing countries, according to the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture. Peasant women are also the ones most affected when the common goods and peasant agriculture are threatened by extractive and agro-industrial projects that dramatically impact the lives of their communities. We peasant women resist the continuous violations of the capitalist and patriarchal system, by the States and agribusiness that destroy nature, take away our lands, poison the planet and appropriate the water!
For these reasons, on this Day of Struggle #Nov25, we as La Via Campesina call on our member organisations and allies to join in our struggle full of hope and resistance to transform the realities that perpetuate violence and ensure that the rights of all women and LGBTQ people are respected; to ensure that they are able to participate in the construction of new societies.
#TimeToTransform #WomenInTheStruggle #StopViolenceAgainstWomen
Call for Life, against Violence!
Solidarity, sorority and resilience are essential values to live and coexist as societies fighting against the violence and brutality of this system.
This #Nov25 join our call for life and against violence:
- Participate in any symbolic act or local action promoted by your local organisation, community or country to end violence against women. #TimeToTransform
- Join our LVC online streaming “Actions for Life and against Violence” on the 25th, an event of collective struggle, reflection and mistica. Link: [to be updated soon]
- Stay Home but not Silent! Use the materials for social media of our Global Campaign Stop Violence against Women, available here
- Commit to your organisation, community, neighbourhood and/or friends to support women and LGBTQ people at risk. Produce healthy food, donate baskets, organise a community soup kitchen or buy products of peasant women! #WomenInTheStruggle
- Print our booklet with basic safety tips against violence, the importance of collective care and don’t forget to translate it to your local language! Available here
During the entire month of November we want to receive letters from our women and LGBTQ comrades, sharing their experiences of struggle and how LVC has contributed to empower them against violence and patriarchy. The letters shouldn’t be too long and you can add a picture if you’d like, but that’s not essential. We want to build our collective memory and rescue our voices from oblivion!
We would also like to receive pictures and videos of people of all ages and genders to share in our social media accounts. You can use these slogans: No one will silence our voices! Stop Violence against Women! Women in the Struggle against the Virus of Capital and Patriarchy!