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Workers' Power

FIVE YEARS AFTER THE EARTHQUAKE IN HAITI, THE SAD STATE OF DEMOCRACY AND HUMAN RIGHTS

An Interview with Human Rights Organizer Jackson Doliscar

By Beverly Bell

Jackson Doliscar, community organizer and human rights defender.

Some things never change. In Haiti, no matter the century or decade in question, one can be certain that: the state and elite are trouncing the rights and needs of the majority, the population is protesting to demand land and justice, and the international community is taking the wrong side.

Five years after the earthquake that killed an estimated 200,000 to 300,000 (no one knows for sure) and rendered 1.9 million more people homeless, the fraudulently elected administration of Michel Martelly has abandoned any pretense of democracy. Having failed to hold elections three years in a row, instead letting national and local elective seats become vacant, the government now rules by decree. It is also attacking and killing human rights defenders. The elite, in combination with foreign corporations, are seizing land for agribusiness, mining, tourism, and free trade zones. The grassroots has taken to the streets to demand democratic government and an end to foreign occupation by the UN. Social movements are also mobilizing for defense of land, housing, and rights. The US has, until recent months, staunchly supported the government. It has backed this support with “security” funding, including more than $7 million for the police in 2015, for a nation not at war against anyone but its own people.

Jackson Doliscar is a community organizer and human rights defender. Since the earthquake, he has been the primary outreach worker in an international campaign for the right to housing for those left languishing under tents, through the Force for Reflection and Action on Housing (FRAKKA, by its Creole acronym). This is the first in a two-part series.

The Coalition of Immokalee Workers and the Fresh Market Announce Partnership for Fair Food

Specialty Grocer to Join CIW’s Fair Food Program, Increase Purchases from Participating Florida Growers in Support of Groundbreaking Human Rights Initiative

PRESS RELEASE: JANUARY 8, 2015

The Coalition of Immokalee Workers

Agreement breaks important ground with two critical new provisions — increased purchases from Florida growers and commitment to support the Fair Food Standard Council’s work monitoring and enforcing the Fair Food Code of Conduct!

IMMOKALEE, FL – The Coalition of Immokalee Workers (CIW) and Greensboro, N.C.-based The Fresh Market are proud to announce their national partnership to support fair farm labor conditions and verifiable, worker-driven social responsibility in US agriculture.

TRANSFORMING POWER, PROTECTING THE ENVIRONMENT IN EL SALVADOR

An Interview with Social Movement Leader and Parliamentarian Estela Hernandez

By Beverly Bell

The social movement La Coordinadora is organizing to protect lands and waters - including the Bay of Jiquilisco, pictured here - from corporate development, instead promoting ecological health and sustainable livelihood. Photo: Erika Blumenfeld, EcoViva

La Coordinadora of the Lower Lempa and the Bay of Jiquilisco in El Salvador is a grassroots, community-led organization of 27,000 families in more than 100 communities. It is transforming economic and political power and the health of the environment, across the department of Usulután. Pillars of La Coordinadora are participatory democracy, empowerment of women and youth, and – still in the works - education and health care for all. The communities are generating income through a green economy based on ecological agriculture and fishing. La Coordinadora is working to build food sovereignty, protect ecosystems, and preserve the largest remaining mangrove forest in the area.

Estela Hernandez is a leader of La Coordinadora and its affiliated non-profit organization, the Mangrove Association. She is also an elected member of the national legislature. There, Hernandez sits on the Environment and Climate Change Commission, the body that drafts environmental legislation.

Movement for Change Coming from the Iguala Case

By Blanche Petrich

Cross-posted from Compañero Manuel

Orginally released Dec 9 2014

In Mexico It's More

(translation: In Mexico it's more dangerous to be a student than a drug trafficker)

The five popular municipal committees that were installed yesterday in different Guerrero municipios, and another 20 more that are being prepared, are part of the people’s organized response, who beginning with the Iguala attack, were at a “point of no return, articulating a movement for changing things in this country, once and for all,” asserted Omar García, leader of the Student Committee of the Ayotzinapa Rural teachers college. He described these new organizational experiences in Ayutla de los Libres, Tlapa, Acapulco, San Luis Acatlán and Tecoanapa as initiatives “that seek to exercise self-government and direct democracy through popular assemblies,” which seek to change the forms of government where an official municipal (county) structure dominates that administers public and private issues. “We want it to be the population that attends to those issues with a concept of population, of people, with all its difficulties and complexities, with their creativity.”

EZLN: On Ayotzinapa, the Festival, and Hysteria as Analysis

By Subcomandante Insurgente Moisés, Zapatista Army for National Liberation

Cross-posted from Enlace Zapatista

On Ayotzinapa, the Festival, and Hysteria as a Method of Analysis and Guide for Action

 

To the compas of the National and International Sixth:

To the National Indigenous Congress:

To the family members and compañeros of those killed and disappeared in Ayotzinapa:

Sisters and brothers:

Compañeros and compañeras:

There are many things we want to tell you. We won’t tell you all of them because we know right now there are more urgent and important issues for all of us.[i] Thus we ask for your patience and your attentive ear.

Help Haitian Family Farmers Keep Their Lands

Other Worlds is excited to announce the launch of our fundraiser for our Hatian land rights campaign on Global Giving!

Read on about our project and our fundraiser, and please consider a donation today!

All recurring monthly donations will be matched by an anonymous donor, so you can double your impact!  
On December 10, Global Giving will match all donations of $25 to $1,000 at 15%!
In order for our campaign to have a permanent spot on Global Giving, we must meet our $5,000 goal by December 31. Please make a donation to support Haitians in their struggle for their human rights and land rights today.

Summary

Family farmers across Haiti have joined together to protect their lands from theft by tourism corporations, mining, and seizure by large landholders. These farmers are some of the poorest and hungriest people in the world. Other Worlds supports Haitians in their struggle for their human rights and land rights through media, advocacy, education, legal defense, international support, and funds, so they can stay on their ancestral land, keep farming, and feed their children.
 

 

Cultivating Climate Justice: A Tale of Two Cities

This is part 3 of a four-part article series “Cultivating Climate Justice” which tells the stories of community groups on the frontlines of the pollution, waste and climate crises, working together for systems change. United across six continents, these grassroots groups are defending community rights to clean air, clean water, zero waste, environmental justice, and good jobs. They are all members of the Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives, a network of over 800 organizations from 90+ countries.

 

This series is produced by the Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives (GAIA) and Other Worlds.

Cultivating Climate Justice: A Tale of Two Cities

This is a tale of two U.S. cities building solutions to the climate crisis from the bottom up.

We start in the Northeast of the country, with Cooperative Energy, Recycling and Organics (CERO), a newly formed worker-owned cooperative in Boston, Massachusetts. While providing family-supporting jobs for the community, CERO works with businesses on separating out materials that can be recovered. They then collect this waste in a truck and bring it to facilities where it can either be recycled or returned to the soil as compost.

Food Chains: The Revolution in America's Fields

A new film has just been released highlighting the struggle and success of the farmworkers in Florida who are revolutionizing farm labor in the field: the Coalition of Immokalee Workers or CIW.

The film hit the theaters on November 21, 2014, and is now showing in select theaters for one week stretches. The San Francisco Premier is Saturday, November 28,

From Food Chains:

In this exposé, an intrepid group of Florida farmworkers battle to defeat the $4 trillion global supermarket industry through their ingenious Fair Food program, which partners with growers and retailers to improve working conditions for farm laborers in the United States.

CLIMBING POETREE ON WESTCOAST TOUR: BOUNDARY-BREAKING AND CREATIVE PERFORMANCE ART FOR SOCIAL CHANGE

Alixa and Naima of Climbing Poetree

 

Innovative artists and activisits Alixa and Naima of the spoken-word, performance art, muralist, and creative new media duo, Climbing PoeTree, have just begun their California tour which goes from Oct 17-22. Starting with a guest apperance on Caroline Casey's Visionary Activist Radio Show airing for an hour at 2pm PST on KPFA.org, Alixa and Naima will share a piece of hte puzzle for Dreaming, Conjuring and Implementing a more lovingly ingenious world.