Choose a news category:

Indigenous Women of the Americas Reclaim their Rights before the United Nations

Posted on: Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Keywords: Latin America and Caribbean, Indigenous Rights, UN

MADRE received this Press Release from Verónica Vargas on behalf of the Continental Network of Indigenous Women of the Americas (known by its Spanish acronym ECMIA)


Contact: Verónica Vargas
CHIRAPAQ Centro de Culturas Indígenas del Perú

Indigenous Women of the Americas Reclaim Their Rights before the United Nations

  • Members of the Continental Network of Indigenous Women of the Americas united their voices in New York City.
  • They demanded that States include Indigenous Peoples in policies and programs and that their rights as Indigenous People be recognized.

May 19, 2011—New York, NY—The Indigenous Women of North, Central and South America gathered today in New York City at the 10th Session of the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, worried about the critical situation of violence, death, racism and loss of cultural identity that thousands of Indigenous women suffer daily. These women are members of the Continental Network of Indigenous Women of the Americas (ECMIA), a network that promoted the training of women leaders for the defense of their lands.

Renilda Martínez, a Wayuu woman from Venezuela, expressed her concern for the “extermination of Indigenous women that continues in the shadows and without trustworthy data”. Martínez declared that the principal causes of death and violence against women are malnutrition, lack of access to maternal health care, domestic violence, illiteracy, militarization and water contamination.

On behalf of South American women, she asked the assembly to consider the issue of violence against Indigenous women as a priority in the upcoming sessions. She also requested that culturally appropriate methods for documenting cases of violence against Indigenous women and people be developed.

Rosalee Gonzáles, member of the Xicana Indigenous Network and delegate for the Enlace Norte, asked the government of Canada to recognize the situation of Unrecognized Indigenous peoples, of the displaced and their descendents. “The Unrecognized Indigenous groups do not have the same rights and are more vulnerable to discrimination, especially in their right to lands and the preservation of their culture, which contributes to the cultural genocide of these groups,” Gonzáles said.

For its part, the Indigenous youth of ECMIA asked the states to create policies, programs and plans directed toward Indigenous youth and children for the revitalization of their cultural identity, languages, and access to training opportunities.

They reported that in Mexico many cases of violations against minors are not brought to justice. Similarly, they affirmed that in Chile there are numerous arbitrary detentions and torture of minors on the part of the police, and as such, they requested amendments to the Anti-terrorist Law in this country.

Available for Interview:

Tarcila Rivera, President of CHIRAPAQ (The Center for Indigenous Peoples' Cultures of Peru) and General Coordinator of the Continental Network of Indigenous Women of the Americas (ECMIA)

« Back to "Press Room" Next Article »

Article Tools
Increase Font Decrease Font Reset Font Print Page Email Page


"Press Room" Home November 2014 October 2014 September 2014 August 2014 July 2014 June 2014 May 2014 April 2014 March 2014 February 2014 January 2014 December 2013 November 2013 October 2013 September 2013 August 2013 July 2013 June 2013 May 2013 April 2013 March 2013 February 2013 January 2013 December 2012 November 2012 October 2012 September 2012 August 2012 July 2012 June 2012 May 2012 April 2012 March 2012 February 2012 January 2012 December 2011 November 2011 October 2011 September 2011 August 2011 July 2011 June 2011 May 2011 April 2011 March 2011 February 2011 January 2011 December 2010 November 2010 October 2010 September 2010 August 2010 July 2010 June 2010 May 2010 April 2010 March 2010 February 2010 January 2010 December 2009 November 2009 October 2009 September 2009 August 2009 July 2009 June 2009 May 2009 April 2009 March 2009 February 2009 January 2009 December 2008 November 2008 October 2008 September 2008 August 2008 July 2008 June 2008 May 2008 April 2008 March 2008 February 2008 January 2008 December 2007 November 2007 October 2007 September 2007 August 2007 June 2007 May 2007 April 2007 March 2007 February 2007 January 2007 December 2006 November 2006 October 2006 September 2006 July 2006 June 2006 April 2006 March 2006 January 2006 December 2005 November 2005 September 2005 August 2005 July 2005 April 2005 March 2005 November 2004 October 2004 April 2004 March 2004 January 2004 December 2003 October 2003 September 2003 June 2003 April 2003 January 2003 September 2002 June 2002 January 2002 November 2001 October 2001 September 2001 August 2001 January 2001


Kat Noel, Website & Media Coordinator
PHONE: +1 212 627 0444

To sign up to receive MADRE media alerts, click here.

Bring MADRE to You

MADRE & Our Partners Make News