At the global level, there are currently some 1.2 billion peasants and together with their families they represent one third of humanity. In absolute terms, there are more peasants today than ever before in history.
Peasants and other rural workers are key to food sovereignty and the realization of the right to food, in particular in developing countries where they provide up to 80% of the food consumed at the local level.
Peasants play a key role in the fight against climate change and the conservation of biodiversity
Yet peasants and other people working in rural areas are among the most vulnerable and discriminated-against group. They are victims of multiple violations of their human rights and suffer disproportionately from hunger and poverty. 80% of those victims of hunger in the world live and work in rural areas.
The CETIM works for several years in favor of the rights of peasants. lt provides its support to organizations representing peasants and other rural workers in the Global South for the access to the UN human rights protection mechanisms. The CETIM is also strongly involved to their sides in the campaign for the adoption of a United Nations Declaration on the rights of peasants and oher people working in rural areas, offering its support so that they are able to participate in the negotiations and present their proposals.
A Declaration on the Rights of Peasants
On 17 December 2018, the United Nations adopted the Declaration on the Rights of Peasants and Others Working in Rural Areas. Alongside La Via Campesina, CETIM was strongly involved in the process that led to the adoption of this indispensable tool. In particular, it offered its support to peasants to enable them to participate in the negotiations and to make their proposals heard.
The adoption of the Declaration is a historic moment. It is the result of a 17-year struggle for the recognition of the rights of this particularly vulnerable population. If respected and implemented, this instrument will be useful, not only for peasants, but for humanity as a whole.
One year after the adoption of this indispensable tool, a joint declaration was signed by nine special rapporteurs and experts and four members of the UN treaty bodies. This document stresses that farmers must participate “in all decision-making processes that affect their lives, lands, resources and livelihoods” and repeatedly urges states to play a key role in implementing the Declaration.
In October 2023, the United Nations Human Rights Council, with an overwhelming majority of Member States in favour, took another historic step. It voted in favour of Resolution 54/9 to create a follow-up mechanism to the Declaration. A Working Group of experts is now responsible for promoting and implementing the Declaration.
Download for free the e-book edited by CETIM “The UN Declaration on the Rights of Peasants“
Protect Peasants’ Rights Campaign
Access to justice for peasants
Training sheets on peasants’ rights
SEE THE INTRODUCTION IN THE FRENCH PAGE ! Mr President, We, peasants, women and men, of the International movement La Via Campesina, organised from 20 to 25 of June 2008 the International Conference on Peasant Rights in Jakarta, Indonesia. After seven years of intense discussions on the content and strategies, our spirits are high and […]
The “ethanol partnership”, launched with great pomp and ceremony by the United States and Brazil on 9 March 2007, marks a new phase in the energy strategies of the great powers, just as does the decision by the European Union to replace 5.75% of it transport fuel from fossil sources with ethanol by 2010 and […]
Over the past four decades, Colombia has faced a dire social, political and armed conflict.1 In this context, it has to be noted that the numerous transnational corporations operating inside Colombia are somehow involved in the conflict, collaborating with public and private security forces, including paramilitary groups, who despite their alleged demobilization, continue to kill […]
The UN human rights bodies and Indigenous Peoples have come a long way.1 It is important to use this exemplary experience to focus on the implementation of human rights of Indigenous Peoples and on the collection and dissemination of the best practices appropriate to their situation – otherwise the endeavours done by the UN to […]
Mr. Chairman, Violations of economic, social and cultural rights are, more often than not, accompanied by violations of civil and political rights and vice versa, as the human rights situation in many countries illustrate. This reality demonstrates the indivisibility of these rights. The situation of millions peasant families, victims of forced evictions due in particular […]