Women's Tribunal:  Gender and Climate Justice:  PAKISTAN

Date:  October 17,2011
Location:  Quetta, Balochistan Region at Auditorium of Pakistan Scouts Association
Organizers:  HOPE - PK
Contact:  Rehana Khilji,

Tribunal Report: Pakistan

The 2011 Pakistan Women’s Tribunal was held in six districts of Balochistan and two Districts of Sindh with 20 womens groups.  Although a previous women’s tribunal on gender and poverty had been carried out in 2009, the country analysis paper highlighted continuous climate change impact on women and girls, including conditions of severe drought and flooding.

The primary reasons for the tribunal were:

  •         To bring the voices of women and traditionally excluded groups affected by the impact of climate change, to national and international level-with specific focus on solutions  and to be able to contribute to influence negotiations and plans of action on climate change at the national as well as the international level during COP17 and Rio+ 20.

  — Focus group discussions on impact of climate change was held as well   
         country analysis paper was produced and published on climate change in Pakistan
                 Posters and IEC material developed and disseminated for wider mobilization on Oct 17th
                School environmental sessions were carried out while week of mobilization and afterwards, to have              the voices of girl child in the process.

    Testimonies by witnesses attesting to the impacts of climate change and poverty:
  Loss of source of income-kitchen gardens, poultry, livestock, income from agriculture field work
  Women more exposed to sexual & other types of violence post floods displacement in 2010 and 2011.
  Source of income linked with Cotton picking-lost
  Loss of livelihood opportunities due to depleting ground water in Northern Baluchistan
  Loss of shelter and protection (in recent IDP situation)
  Loss of forest & agriculture resources-post earthquake Ziarat
  Health impacts on women (maternal mortality)

Proposed Solutions:
  Integration of gender concerns in climate change policy at national and international level
  Integration of gender concerns in climate change adaptation at local and level planning and resource allocation
  Women say should be ensured in the national climate change policy
  Awareness of climate change  on wider level and in local languages should be promoted to have enhanced women participation in the debate
  Local community based women groups should be supported financially and technically to respond to the climate change at local level and adapt better.
  Women participation should be ensured in disaster risk reduction strategies and early warning systems
  Initiatives that support women’s livelihood and income opportunities need to be promoted at all levels.
  Strengthening quality response to gender based violence and strengthening the prevention side of it.
  A forestation and forest protection measures need to be strengthened at local level, with participation of women and youth

A Way Forward:
  Local community based women groups should be supported financially and technically to respond to the climate change at local level and adapt better.
  Women participation should be ensured in disaster risk reduction strategies and early warning systems
  Initiatives that support women’s livelihood and income opportunities need to be promoted at all levels.
  Strengthening quality response to gender based violence and strengthening the prevention side of it.
  A forestation and forest protection measures need to be strengthened at local level, with participation of women and youth

Pakistan Tribunal: Humanitarian Organization For Poverty Eradication & Environment (HOPE-PK)


To hold Women and Climate Justice Tribunal in order to facilitate women’s voices to be heard and their proposed solutions to be given due weightage in the  in debates around climate change at the local, national and  international level. 

5.Background & rationale :
Speaker at Tribunal in Pakistan
Regarding climate change, Pakistan is rated 12th in the vulnerability index. Droughts and floods have have increased in the recent years. Extreme weather patterns have been observed in the past few years. Natural disasters are closely linked to changes in climate patterns and there is a need to take this changing pattern into account when conducting development planning. Climate change adaptation is needed especially for vulnerable communities in remotest rural areas, like Balochistan. The recent floods of 2010 have brought in new sets of vulnerabilities for the people of Pakistan.
Women in Balochistan are living in a conservative, patriarchal, male dominant set up , with a mix of tribal , feudal and in (some cases)  nomadic  life style.  In general, there is a severe gender gap in literacy, mobility, access and possession of resources, decision making and status in the society. Women’s lives are specially facing more difficulties due to the changing climatic conditions. They suffer the most from the impact of drought, floods and other conditions caused by climate change. As women are in the non-formal agriculture workforces and are also playing important role in managing the water, food and nutrition needs of the family, the disturbances in the climatic conditions and the resulting natural disasters takes out their source of empowerment from them, this includes piece of land on which they grow, their poultry , their water source, their livestock, the seeds that they stored etc. They are also subject to violence under the situations of displacement that is caused by the impact of climate change. Recent floods brought in many of such cases as evidence.  The recent floods have shown that despite all their vulnerabilities, women have emerged as surviors of the disaster, they have played a vital role in disaster response and recovery. This shows their potential as grassroots decision makers, planners and active participants of the relief and recovery activities.
These women are truly in a position based on their daily life experience,  not only to identify issues and challenges related to the impact of climate change but also to  improvise solutions and provide effective responses to the challenges imposed by climate change. This may include a range of solutions including rehabilitation of indigenous water sources,  water conservation and storage techniques, afforestation and preservation of flood resistant and drought resistant seeds and so on.
6.The Tribunal:
Despite all what is mentioned above, women’s voices are still not being heard in debates around climate change at the local, national, regional or international level.  So the tribunal aims at bringing women’s voices and their proposed solutions to the forefront of the climate debates, in particular in the run up to COP17 in December 2011 and the Rio+20 Summit in June 2012. HOPE-Pk, with the support of GCAP/FTF organized its initial tribunal in 2009 for COP 15 mobilizations and this tribunal is a follow up tribunal building on the previous one.

HOPE-Pk works for gender and climate justice & poverty reduction since 1998. HOPE has organized and trained women groups in six Districts of Baluchistan on self-help bases. We conducted focus group discussions and basic climate justice awareness sessions with the women and male community groups and indigenous peoples grassroots organizations. In 2009 , with partnership of GCAP, we organized Gender, Poverty and Climate Justice Tribunal where women and men presented their testimonies in front of an expert pannle. The recommendations were shared with COP 15 civil society events in Copenhagen.  HOPE has also presented the findings of this tribunal to NGO event at the UNCSW 2010, as well as to the GCAP Global Assembly in September same year. HOPE Pk is also the convener of Balochistan Alliance on Climate Change Adaptation (CCAB) focuses on the issue of poverty and climate change, in particular the gender equality. The Alliance members are representative community organizations of various Districts of Balochistan.
FTF would be responsible for organizing, in close coordination with GCAP Pakistan.
On behalf of FTF, HOPE Pk will implement the tribunal project in Balochistan Pakistan. HOPE has successful implemented the previous tribunal and we have the capacity to organize this tribunal in close coordination with GCAP Pakistan. As the proposed date of the tribunal falls within the Global Week of Mobilization, HOPE-will liaise closely with GCAP for in building the mobilization activities during this week.
A total of 12 testimonies will be collected and developed. At least 6 will be presented and along these six the rest will be published in a small booklet shape. Given that the material from the Hearings is to be used towards COP 17 and RIO plus 20,  HOPE will bring in to the tribunal, the real life stories, and the testimonies will be facilitated to be framed in a way that can bring in  specific and well grounded (political) demands that can be used for advocacy towards governments in the north and the global south. The expert pannle/judge will include people from various sectors of life including Environment Department, Academia, Parliamentarians, Civil Society and Women Movement. The expert witness along with the help of the expert pannle will draft a statement of recommendations that will have strong economic and political dimension of specific demands.   
The focus is on follow-up tribunals/hearings will be on the solutions. Whereas the past tribunal highlighted the problems, the issues and the contributing factors impacting women, this proposed tribunals would be an opportunity to address solutions, political, economic, environmental, systemic and others, to the issue of women being impacted by climate change.

Testimonies will be heard from at least sex women. These women will also be able to be facilitated for an interview with the media partner. These stories will also be published in a the form of a small booklet and will be made available to broad audiences as per the overall media strategy of the project

Women Listening to Tribunal in Pakistan
The hearing would contribute to leveraging political pressure at a national and/or regional level, and at an international level as the voices from grassroots will be brought forward , with real life examples, and strong recommendations , with clear political, economic and environmental dimensions. At local and national level a proactive communication strategy will be formulated which will help highlight and raise the concerns and solutions proposed by women, in both print and electronic media. Apart from this a petition will be developed , and signatures will be obtained from the hearing participants that will demand to the Provincial and national Government to integrated the voices of women into the climate policy at country level. At international level GCAP and FTF will facilitate to help raise the voices of these women into the international level negotiations and processes.

As integral part of the project HOPE-PK will organize pane discussions and a stand up event in these dates. Both the stand up and pane discussion will be linked to the tribunal by holding the tribunal on the 17th where pictures and statements from the previous days mobilization events will be displayed in the morning and during the break times on the day of hearing.

All this work will be sustained after COP17 and towards the Rio+20 summit. In this regard a follow up action plan will be developed at the end of the hearing, based on the recommendations analysed. This will include a press conference at the end of the hearing, setting up a delegation who will visit the parliamentarians and will hand them over the recommendations for both integration in the policy at local and national level as well as to take it further and share it with negotiators and diplomats involved at the international negotiations. Between COP17 and RIO HOPE will develop another action plan to keep the momentum sustained, in this regard we submitted a project to some potential partner for another climate tribunal in other provinces, districts and indigenous communities.

For more information, contact Rosa Lizarde, Global Coordinator, Feminist Task Force at <>

The Feminist Task Force was established under the umbrella of the Global Call to Action against Poverty (GCAP) in March, 2005, emphasizing gender equality as central to poverty eradication.

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