"Strengthening Voices: Search for Solutions ”Women’s Tribunals on Gender and Climate Justice"

 FTF/CIVICUS event at the CIVICUS World Assembly
Voices That Are Not Heard: 
Marginalized Communities and the Impact of Climate Change 
- Sept. 5, 2012 14:30 - 16:00 Montreal Convention Center
Format: Engagement workshop

Summary: Climate change is a global issue, but increasingly it doesn’t impact all regions, countries, communities or individuals to the same degree. Worldwide it has become starkly evident that those most affected by the effects and impact of climate change are minority groups, already side lined from mainstream society. The direct evidence of climate change and the negative effects of changing weather patterns are exponentially worst for those already marginalised and failing to meet their basic needs. Groups living off the land, or faced with minimal resources to seek out an existence are increasingly facing mounting hardships, as their battle to survive is worsened by droughts, freak storms, and reduced food sources. WomenFirst Nation or indigenous groups, and subsistence farmers, are among those groups fighting an ever-increasing battle against nature and modern day society.

As these groups are already marginalised, and often side lined voices in our societies, how can they make their voices heard on climate change and its impacts on them? What is the reality they face, and where is the climate justice fight to empower them? What alternatives and change can we all help to establish and fight for in the future? Panellists are members and leaders of various communities from around the world, and come together to find solutions and answers to these questions. Discussions will focus on finding common solutions, as well as context based answers, to this international problem. This can be silenced no more.

Mey Eltayeb Ahmed, Climate Change Focal Point, United Nations Environment Programme, Sudan
Caroline Usikpedo-Omoniye
, National President, Niger Delta Women’s Movement for Peace and Development, Nigeria
Nicolas Mainville,
 Directeur - Responsible Campagne forêt, Greenpeace Québec, Canada
Rosa Lizarde, Global Coordinator, FTF and GCAP Foundation Board Member, United States of America/Mexico
Marta Benavides
, Founder, SigloXXIII, El Salvador

Feminist Task Force Delegation:
"RIO +20 Earth Summit 2012 and UN Sustainability Conference"
On Thursday June 21st the Feminist Task Force and partner organizations presented the side event Organizing for Change, Women's Tribunals as Civil Society Advocacy at the monumental UN conference RIO +20 in Brazil.

The Feminist Task Force co-sponsored the book launch of "Women Reclaiming Sustainable Livelihoods: Spaces Lost, Spaces Gained" on June 19th at the UN RIO+20 sustainability conference. Global Coordinator of the FTF, Rosa Lizarde, co-authored a chapter in the book focusing on the "Women's Tribunals on Gender and Climate Change" and discussed the tribunals at the launch. 

Feminist Task Force: 
Women's Tribunals on Gender and Climate Justice 
Chicago Women's Tribunal on Climate Justice

The Feminist Task Force, together with Eco-Justice Collaborative, Pilsen Environmental Rights and Reform Organization (P.E.R.R.O.), Citizens Against Ruining the Environment (CARE) and our partners at the UN, the Loretto Community at the United Nations, organized the second gender and climate justice tribunal taking place in the United States, the Chicago Women's Tribunal on Climate Justice.The tribunal took place in the Chicago neighborhood of Joliet, and featured the testimony of women from Chicago neighborhoods of Romeoville, Lockport, Little Village and Pilsen. During the Tribunal it was reported that Fisk and Crawford, the local coal plant was attributed in 41 deaths 550 ER visits 2800 asthma attacks.
Women from the Joliet and Lockport areas have been working for 20 years to stop the pollution from two area coal plans and quarry waste disposal site. They have been breathing harmful emissions from two polluting coal fired power plants from Romeoville and Joliet. Women from Pilsen and Little Village, a predominantly Mexican-American neighborhood, have been breathing air from two of the oldest and dirtiest coal plants in the nation.
Organizers and Participants of the Chicago Tribunal
Please Check out more picture here
These Chicago women from different backgrounds and neighborhoods, have all been witnesses to the harmful impacts of coal on their lives, their communities and their neighborhood. The Chicago Women's Tribunal on Climate Justice will ensure the voices of urban grassroots women will reach the corridors of power at the local, national and global levels.

The tribunal follows a long line of women's tribunals spearheaded by the Feminist Task Force and organized around the world since 2007. The Tribunals have been used to create a public space for women to draw attention to critical issues at the local, national and global levels.

They provide an opportunity for women directly affected by poverty, climate change and gender inequality to raise their voices and present testimony, bring awareness and advocate for fundamental human rights.
Chicago Women's Tribunal on Climate Justice Featured on AlterNet News

On May 10, 2012 the Feminist Task Force, Loretto at the UN and OVEC organized the first Gender and Climate Justice Tribunal in US. The tribunal took place in West Virginia and examined the impacts of coal mining in Central Appalachia.

Please check out the
Hobet Mountain Top Removal Site
West Virginia (OVEC)
The West Virginia tribunal and our upcoming Chicago Tribunal are part of the series "Strengthening Voices:  Search for Solutions Women’s Tribunals on Gender and Climate Justice", a series of 17 tribunals and hearings in Africa, Asia, North America and Latin America. The tribunals are organized by the Feminist Task Force and the Global Call to Action against Poverty, in partnership with Greenpeace International and Inter Press Service introduce  The Women's Tribunals involved a collection of authentic, specific and exemplary testimonies of grassroots and rural women who have experienced climate change related problems in their lives and communities, and their search for innovative and successful solutions to them.

Wangari Maathai Planting Trees

with Children in Kenya

The Women's Tribunals initially took place in October and November 2011 and dedicated to the memory of Wangari Maathai (1940-2011), a true champion for rural women, environmental justice, peace and development.

Map of Gender and Climate Justice Tribunals - Fall 2011

The Women's Tribunals coincided with the launch of The World We Want report and a wide range of national actions to mark International Day of Rural Women (Oct. 15th), World Food Day (Oct. 16th) and International Day for the Eradication of Poverty (Oct. 17th).

Our media partner, Inter Press Service (IPS) will ensure that the voices of disenfranchised women are raised in the media. Greenpeace will develop a science based study on climate impacts in Africa. The Women's Tribunals are part of an integrated agenda of the FTF "Road to Rio Roadmap", which includes advocacy and campaigning on the COP17, G20 Summit, UN CSW, Rio + 20 and MDGs' Post-2015 Processes .

GCAP: Women's Tribunals on Gender and Climate Justice
Partners and Tribunal Organizers:

African Women’s Economic and Political Network (AWEPON)

Centro de Mujeres Peruana Flora Tristan

Cidadao Global, O Instituto Baobab, Bordadeiras da Coroa,FEMNegrasRJ, Criola, Avaaz

Coalición Nacional Mexicana del Llamado Mundial a la Acción Contra la Pobreza-Mexicanos Contra la Desigualdad

Comunidad en Movimiento

G50 (Grupo Sin Cuenta)

Jagaran Nepal

Siglo XVIII  Paz Sustentable

Humanitarian Organization for Poverty Eradication & Environment-Pakistan (HOPE-PK)

In partnership:

Global Call to Action Against Poverty (GCAP) is a growing alliance that brings together civil society groups and call for action from world leaders in the global North and South to meet their promises to end poverty and inequality. GCAP's main aim is to achieve policy and practice changes that will improve the lives of people living in poverty. http://www.whiteband.org/

IPS is an international communication institution with a global news agency at its core, raising the voices of the South and  civil society on issues of development, globalization, human rights and the environment. http://ipsnews.net/

Greenpeace is the leading independent campaign organization that uses non- violent creative confrontation to expose global environmental problems and to promote solutions that are essential to a green and peaceful future. http://www.greenpeace.org

For more information, contact Rosa Lizarde, Global Coordinator, Feminist Task Force at <rosaencasa@aol.com>

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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