Issue 140 – March 2009

Women’s voices on plantations

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THE FOCUS OF THIS ISSUE: WOMEN’S VOICES ON PLANTATIONS Communities in the South are being affected by the spread of monoculture tree plantations and women are the most impacted by them. Over the past months, WRM and Friends of the Earth International organized jointly three workshops with local women: one in Asia (Papua New Guinea), one in Africa (Nigeria) and one in Latin America (Brazil). The main reason for choosing cases in those countries was that all had something in common: the direct or indirect involvement of the European Union in the spread of such plantations. The importance of the EU involvement in the three cases is that within the industrialized North, the European Union is perhaps the one that has developed more gender-sensitive policies, both applicable at the internal and external level. It was therefore felt that there was a need to document the contradiction between what those gender policies say and how other EU policies result in specific impacts on women in the South. Of course the findings are also applicable to policies and corporations from other countries –North and South- involved in the promotion of monoculture tree plantations. WRM and Friends of the Earth’s Forest and Biodiversity Programme wish to thank all the women that participated in the workshops and shared their experience with us. At the same time, we wish to use the opportunity of this symbolic date –March 8th, International Women’s Day- to pay homage to the courage of the countless women that are fighting back and making their voices heard.
WRM Bulletin
March 2009