Indigenous people in Mexico continue to face violence, systemic injustice and violation of their human rights. Land and other natural resources are being taken away, communal and cultural rights are ignored, and scant attention is paid to their educational, economic and social needs.
Canadian Jesuits International supports this initiative of the Diocese of San Cristobal de las Casas and the Jesuits aimed at the promotion of human rights and territorial defence of Indigenous communities in the state of Chiapas. These communities are particularly vulnerable due to systemic exploitation, ethno-cultural conflict and corruption in the government and other institutions. The goals of the project are to build capacity in community organization and social mobilization for the defence of individual, collective and environmental rights; and to defend the right to self-determination of Indigenous communities in Chiapas.
Indigenous people already organize against the systematic violation of their human rights through a number of local, regional and national movements. They are also trying to improve their lives through alternative social and economic organizations. The Jesuits in Mexico are committed to accompanying Indigenous people in their struggle for their rights.
This initiative started in 2013 and despite many challenges, the project has had significant success. From its humble beginnings with having 20 promoters in 8 parishes, the initiative now has 60 human rights promoters who work in 20 parishes. The project also accompanies local community movements in 8 regions and offers regular training sessions, with 250 adults and youth leaders participating in various workshops, training sessions and meetings; 13,600 members of parishes and Indigenous communities have been impacted by these activities.
Coordinator: Fr José Avilés Arriola SJ
Human Rights Promoters Process of San Cristóbal de Las Casas Diocese, Chiapas
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