Small farmers need land access to land protected: contact U.S. and Canadian UN delegates!
Did you know that nearly 1 billion people in the world – 80% of whom are small food producers – live in a state of hunger? The root causes of hunger are not a lack of food, but rather lack of justice.
Land grabs – a global phenomenon of massive thefts of land from local communities – are one of the most recent trends contributing to this injustice. WhyHunger’s partner La Via Campesina reports that over 45 million hectares of land are already the object of land grabs, with 30 million of these hectares being stolen from communities in Africa. But there’s something we can do about it.
In the U.S. and Canada, we have a responsibility and a role to play in this struggle. The corporations and institutions profiting from land grabs are based in North America, and North American governments have taken a disturbing role in international negotiations around land tenure.
This is why we’re asking you to contact U.S. and Canadian delegates to the UN’s Committee on World Food Security (CFS). WhyHunger actually serves as the CFS representative of all organizations and citizens of North America, and we know that our delegates want and need to hear from concerned citizens and organizations. The CFS was created to address the food crisis and is a unique UN agency because it is actively concerned with involving people most impacted by the food crisis in the development of solutions.
WhyHunger has been involved at the highest levels of international policy-making to ensure that the rights of small farmers everywhere are recognized. Particularly, we are concerned with the Right to Food, which is fundamentally threatened by these unregulated, irresponsible, and in some cases criminal land grabs. WhyHunger believes that the root cause of hunger is powerlessness, and without access to land, there is no way people can feed themselves.
The next CFS meeting begins on October 10, 2011. WhyHunger is joining the US Food Sovereignty Alliance, the National Farmers Union (Canada), Via Campesina, FoodFirst Information and Action Network, Grassroots International, Food and Water Watch, and others to take collective action to demand that principles of food sovereignty are included in the CFS’s framework. With your support, we will gather thousands of letters from people and organizations, sending a resounding message to our governmental delegates that we need them to change course, and start listening to the solutions that come from the real experts – those most impacted by the food crisis.
For more information on the CFS, check out this article by Christina Schiavoni of WhyHunger, who has been representing us all at the UN.