The UN Declaration on the Rights of Peasants - Let's help to make this story a success!

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It is nearly impossible for a landless peasant to buy a farm: Prices for farmland are high and a land transfer tax has to be paid. But the giant insurance company Munich Re legally bought masses of farmland without paying a single euro in tax. And Munich Re is not in the business of sustainable agriculture; they are looking out for profit. [1] This is just one example of how the rules are stacked against peasant farmers.

Today, the rights of over 1.2 billion peasants and their families are being threatened or violated – in the form of evictions from their lands, land-grabbing from multinational corporations, and poor working conditions. A United Nations declaration would help guarantee their rights and give peasants a tool to resist the threats and violations they face.

This declaration is almost finalised. There will be one last meeting in Geneva in a few weeks time before the United Nations General Assembly will vote on it. Agribusiness corporations are doing all the lobbying they can to water-down the nearly-ready UN declaration. [2]

A delegation representing millions of peasants, herders and fishers from all over the world will face the agro-lobbyists and hesitant governments at the UN in Geneva. Let’s amplify their power with our voices. Together we can communicate our desperate need for healthy and sustainable food systems.

Many governments around the world are backing the declaration, but without additional support it could be rendered ineffective and inadequate to protect the rights of peasants. [3] If 100,000 of us sign the petition, we can convince European governments that their citizens support the rights of peasants, and that they should reject the agro-industry’s attempts to change the declaration.

Sign now for rights for peasants!

Heat waves and droughts this summer have shown us how much we depend on sustainable farming. 70% of the food produced globally comes from peasant farming. They are guardians of biodiversity and they grow sustainable and quality food for us. They also offer alternatives to large-scale industrial farming.

But public funding of the agro-industry, land-grabbing, and unfair trade agreements are undermining livelihoods in rural communities.

Peasants must be protected! The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Peasants is about to become a story of huge success. About 15 years ago, farmers from all over the world wrote their own first declaration of their rights. Back then the Bolivian government took the initiative to the United Nations in order to have these rights guaranteed. In countless meetings since then, peasants discussed with governments, demonstrated their needs, and gave evidence about ongoing human rights violations. [4]

Let us help to make this long story a wonderful success. Together our voices will show that peasants are not alone, and will convince European governments to stand with them at the UN.

Rights for peasants! Sign now.

With hope,

Mika (Bordeaux), Jörg (Lübeck), Virginia (Madrid), and the rest of us at WeMove.EU

PS: The UN declaration could be a concrete tool to stop violations against rural communities: Peasants would be able to assert their specific rights like the right to land, decent incomes or to seeds. But we can’t let the agro-industry lobby water-down the declaration! Sign the petition.

References

[1] https://viacampesina.org/en/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2017/08/Peasants-Fighting-for-Justice-EN-Low-Res.pdf

[2] https://www.ohchr.org/EN/HRBodies/HRC/RuralAreas/Pages/5thSession.aspx

[3] https://viacampesina.org/en/new-step-forward-process-un-declaration-rights-peasants/

[4] https://viacampesina.org/en/publication-peasants-fighting-for-justice/

http://www.eurovia.org/crunch-time-for-the-un-declaration-globalizing-the-struggle-more-urgent-than-ever/

3 comments

Thanks for sharing - tried to sign but couldn't access the link

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Dear Adela, Many thanks for sharing this important declaration, it would be great if you could keep GROW participants informed on any developments by posting updates on this same thread if you can. All best wishes, Raquel