Economic justice

This academic article, published on Sur, contextualizes and analyzes women-led resistance to patriarchy, capitalism, and racism in Central America. In the shadow of Central America's historical violence, JASS authors Ardon and Flores look to feminists and indigenous women as the front line defenders of human rights for themselves, their communities, and the world. Read more to see how women have organized against backlash, repression, and systematic violence, creating an alternative model for survival in the face of an ever-changing landscape.
I spoke to Berta Cáceres the day she was murdered. I never imagined that later this year I would be in a demonstration along with almost a thousand women in Honduras asking for justice for her murder. Sometimes, I still can hear her voice.
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“Protection of women defenders must be based on recognizing their existence, but also their contribution to creating better societies,” said a participant during a forum with the UN Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights Defenders, Michel Forst who visited Central American countries to hear directly from defenders about the challenges and risks they face.
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“We find ourselves in a crisis. There are no jobs. There is no cash. Basically everything is a problem,” says Mai Sputi, In the wake of many protests that have erupted in Zimbabwe, JASS' Winnet Shanuyarira spotlights the role women have been playing in calling for change.
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This report is a summary of the shared experiences and learning gained at the July 2014 JASS Southeast Asia (JASS SEA) Indigenous Women Workshop. Representatives from the Philippines, Cambodia, Malaysia, Indonesia and Myanmar gathered to reflect and share experiences of organizing as indigenous women.
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"As women struggle for the biodiversity of the planet, defend livelihoods threatened by mining and extractives, and put their lives on the line, we need to prioritise the protection of WHRDs." JASS Southern Africa’s Winnet Shamuyarira reflects on defenders across Africa and their fight for the right to lands, livelihoods and life.
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In Seram Islands, Indonesia, women rise from poverty through Bina Masadah (Women, There is Hope), a women farmers’ cooperative that they formed in the coastal community of Nuruwe. Women lead the seaweed processing and run the cooperative themselves.
In East Kalimantan and elsewhere in Indonesia, performing customary rituals of indigenous peoples are commonplace. But now, such activities could land them in prison. Indigenous women, however, are fighting back.
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“Khmer tradition dictates that women should just stay at home...My passion is to make women claim their rightful place in society even if it takes being behind these prison bars to prove this point,” said Kong Chantha, Cambodian land rights activist, while imprisoned, in December 2014.
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