March 8th: Organising and struggle to win our rights

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Via Campesina Press Release

(Harare, March 8th, 2016) Today, International Women’s Day, La Via Campesina is calling for action against capitalist violence all over the world. Capitalist violence is not only the violence that is directly inflicted upon women; it is also an integral part of a social context of exploitation and dispossession that is characterised by the historical oppression and violation of the basic rights of women peasants, farmers, and farmworkers, landless women, indigenous women and black women.

La Via Campesina emphasises the importance of organising and struggle, leading to liberation and awareness and enabling women to participate in politics as historical subjects – with the goal of building a just society, regardless of ethnicity, gender, or sexual orientation.

The international peasant and farmer movement is very troubled to see that, with the spread of conservative policies which constitute an attack on women’s human rights and their very lives, there is growing oppression of women by capitalism and the patriarchy around the world.

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Peasant women power in Mozambique

Women peasants in Mozambique are rescuing an agroecological model that goes against industrial, largescale food production. They are also rising up in protest against land grabbing, a trend that threatens to displace local farmers. In doing this, these women set Mozambique on a path toward sustainable development, while strengthening their positions, defending native seeds and supporting local, healthy food. 

b_350_0_16777215_00_images_2016-02-19-Moz_farmers.jpegFirst published by Farming Matters | 31.4 | December 2015

Agroecological methods of farming have always been a part of the social and cultural life in Mozambican rural communities. To strengthen these practices in the face of corporate agriculture, the Mozambican Farmer’s Union, UNAC, has promoted the practices of agroecology, such as the conservation of native seeds and local systems of food production, for a number of years. Women play a key role in many of UNAC’s initiatives.

Read more: Peasant women power in Mozambique

Opinion: Women farmers in Europe

All over the world women play a unique and vital role in fixing our broken food system. There is a strong need in Europe to strengthen women farmers in their work, through education and training, argues Hanny van Geel.

2016-02-19-Hanny.jpgFirst published in Farming Matters | 31.4 | December 2015

All over the world women play a unique and vital role in fixing our broken food system. The prevailing view on agriculture and food in Europe and in European institutions is limited to economics and trade. In these places (old) men in suits discuss amongst themselves and take decisions. In social movements working for the environment, development, health, agroecology and food sovereignty, women of all ages are active in various roles in equal in numbers to men, or even as a majority. Women work in urban gardens, sell at farmers’ markets, do catering, process food, they are active in debates and are often leaders in these social movements.

Read more: Opinion: Women farmers in Europe

La Via Campesina struggle against femicide and violence against women

b_350_0_16777215_00_images_2015-11-25-No_Violence_against_women.jpg(Harare, November 25, 2015) On the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women on November 25th, La Vía Campesina will be mobilizing to strengthen the struggle and resistance  around our capitalist, patriarchal system. Taking into account how this system endangers the lives of women, how it treats them as objects, how it exploits women and removes them from their homes, creates wars and militarizes civilian territories, it is urgent to build new human relationships that are founded on gender justice and equal rights.

La Vía Campesina is reaffirming its commitment to the "Global Campaign to End Violence Against Women" undertaken in 2008 as a tool for debate and education within the peasant movement. Additionally, it aims to call out the structural violence in society that threatens women around the world. This violence manifests itself in every arena, including the physical, psychological, economic and the political one and it is reinforced daily as if it were something natural and normal.

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