Latin American Mining Monitoring Programme

Latin American Mining Monitoring Programme

Charity information

Latin American Mining Monitoring Programme

Mining in Latin America is booming and most projects are located in rural and indigenous land. The impact of mining on traditional communities is immense and yet it is often ignored that women carry the greatest burden. Silently they witness how their livelihoods are adversely affected by the systematic and irreversible destruction of the land they depend on, whilst their children’s health deteriorates as a result of air and water contamination. The women’s disempowerment is aggravated by cultural perceptions that there is no reason for their participation or consultation on mining and development issues and so they are practically invisible to government and corporations who hold the power to promote and exploit mineral resources.

Despite these formidable barriers, there are women activists prepared to take a stand and challenge corporations to become accountable and uphold international standards. Their determination and courage is as extraordinary as it is dangerous and often governments and corporations intimidate them. Their gender and vulnerability makes them easy targets.

The Latin American Mining Monitoring Network (LAMMP) is a charity that exists to give a voice to impoverished, invisible and disenfranchised rural and indigenous women activists, whose communities have been severely impacted by socially irresponsible mining corporations – many with a reputation among the world’s worst polluters. This empowerment deserves to be supported. A recent Amnesty International report considers women activists opposing irresponsible mining corporations among the most vulnerable groups of human rights defenders in Latin America.

Using a rights’ based approach, LAMMP is the first and only international organisation working on a ground-breaking initiative: the development of a Latin American network of rural and indigenous women defenders of economic and social rights in the mining sector.

The Network is:

-Building women activists’ expertise and capacity to challenge mining corporations and collectively fight against the disempowerment that arises as a result of social stigma, lack of information and leverage.

-Enabling women activists (through financial and practical support) to become actors in their own right, and develop local and international campaigns that address their mining concerns from a gender perspective.

Giving a voice to marginalised, forgotten women so that they can develop their own groups is an extraordinary challenge that demands extraordinary amounts of time, energy and resources. On a shoestring LAMMP has been able to reach and strengthen small groups of activists in Costa Rica, Venezuela, Guatemala, Ecuador and Peru. But if we are to succeed in the goal of building a regional platform that further empowers these activists and many more in other countries, it is imperative that we find resources not just to enhance understanding of the challenges that this group of women face and raise their work’s profile but also to find imaginative ways of protecting them in their new roles as defenders.

Founded 1997

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