Alternatives and Resistance to Policies that Generate Hunger
to be launched in Abidjan, Bamako, Bamenda, Bangui, Barcelona, Berlin, Bogota, Brussels, Bujumbura, Coimbra, Cotonou, Dakar, Evora,Geneva, The Hague, Kampala, Kinshasa, Lisbon, Lomé, Lusaka, Makeni, Mexico City, Nairobi, New York City, Niamey, Oslo, Ouagadougou, Quito, Rome, Stockholm, Vienna, Zurich, and many more cities!
Watch the video of the official launch of the Watch 2013 in Rome with Olivier De Schutter (UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food), Stineke Oenema (ICCO), Angel Strapazzón (CLOC-LVC), and Léa Winter (RtFN Watch Coordinator)
Stop Policies that Generate Hunger!
Rome, Berlin, Heidelberg, Utrecht, October 8th, 2013 – In a world that produces enough food for all, the annual report of the Right to Food and Nutrition Watch 2013, its sixth edition to be launched in Rome today, identifies a number of policies that generate hunger and malnutrition instead of reducing them. In response, articles in the report set forth the claim that such policies and the actors who implement them, respect and incorporate the human right to adequate food when redesigning detrimental policies. The report further insists upon the need for inclusive and meaningful participation of people and communities in the development of those public policies which affect their lives.
The Watch presents national case studies and analysis that reveal:
• policies that foster violence and discrimination against women with regard to equal access to natural resources, inheritances, equal wages and political decision-making, which both: limit women’s capacity to contribute fully to food and nutrition security; and, clearly produce the conditions that result in the fact that women and girls worldwide are the most affected in their health, nutrition and dignity;
• policies that systematically limit and exclude large groups, including peasants, agricultural workers, fisherfolks, pastoralists and indigenous peoples from participating in those decisions that affect their very livelihoods;
• policies on a global level that facilitate land grabbing, concentrated ownership of natural resources and the commodification of public goods that deprive smallholders and other people of their food resources.
"There is one response to these policies that generate hunger: just stop them!," said Flavio Valente, Secretary General of FIAN International, one of the organizations that co-publish the Watch. "A human rights approach, including the enforcement of international legal instruments, is fundamental to reverse global trends leading to discrimination, exclusion and deprivation. Policies on trade and investment, energy and finance, agriculture and nutrition must be scrutinized under the criterion of coherence with human rights." The report stresses that a check of human rights coherence is particularly needed for global initiatives such as the G8 Alliance on Food Security in Africa, the Scaling-Up Nutrition initiative (SUN), the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) and other Public-Private Partnerships (PPP) in agriculture or nutrition. All of these initiatives include significant involvement of corporations as well as the attendant conflicts of interest based on commercial considerations that become inevitably entwined in the making of public policy
According to Olivier de Schutter, the Special UN Rapporteur on the Right to Food, "[t]he failures of the dominant food systems are by now well acknowledged. But inertia still have been prevailing, largely because no credible alternatives were proposed. What this publication does is to show that such alternatives are emerging. Not from the laboratories of food scientists or from governmental agencies - but bottom up, from the initiatives of people who seek to regain control over the food systems on which they depend."
The 2013 edition of the Watch addresses Alternatives and Resistance to Policies that Generate Hunger and details how civil society initiatives based on the respect of human rights, offer solutions consistent with sustainability, equality, and justice, as well as with concepts such as food sovereignty, agro-ecology, or peasants' seeds.