Quantcast

Groups Defending Human Rights to Food and Water Receive Food Sovereignty Prize

Food

The US Food Sovereignty Alliance (USFSA), a network of organizations working to assert food and water as basic human rights and advocate for community control rather than the industrial food model as the solution to world hunger, has named Palestine's Union of Agricultural Work Committees (UAWC) and Bellingham, Washington's Community to Community Development/Comunidad a Comunidad (C2C) as co-recipients of its 2014 Food Sovereignty Prize.

Workers harvest olives in Palestine. Photo credit: UAWC

While seemingly far-flung, each fights for a community whose access to a reliable food supply is threatened.

Palestine's story is widely known, of course, with news of bombings in the headlines almost every day. But beyond the dramatic and heart-wrenching stories of schools and apartment buildings destroyed and hundreds of civilians, including children killed, is the story of the struggle for daily survival in Gaza and the West Bank.

UAWC aims to mitigate the impacts of war by creating farm cooperatives and seed banks while fighting for the right to food, land and water.

Washington State is not experiencing war, but the situation for the migrant immigrant farm workers, often undocumented, that are essential to its agricultural economy is challenging as well. Community to Community Development helps by developing farm worker-owned cooperatives, organizing a successful nutrition education project called Cocinas Sanas, promoting domestic fair trade, supporting a new farm worker union and organizing a national boycott of Sakuma Farms, which has withheld pay, provided poor housing and retaliated against the workers.

“In honoring Community to Community, the USFSA honors indigenous farmworkers in the U.S. displaced by NAFTA," said C2C executive director Rosalinda Guillen. "These peasant farmers from Mexico are practicing a tradition of struggle for justice. Together, C2C and Familias Unidas are promoting food sovereignty in rural Washington State and challenging the corporate agricultural interests that are controlling our food system."

The prize will be awarded in Des Moines, Iowa on Oct. 15.

For the sixth year in a row, the Food Sovereignty Prize is an exciting opportunity to highlight the hard work that small-scale farmers, farmworkers and other food producers do to feed their communities and create lasting solutions to the root causes of hunger, climate change and poverty," said Sara Mersha, director of grantmaking and advocacy at Grassroots International. "These successful strategies are the alternative to the damaging effects of the corporate agribusiness model, proving that, in the words of Arundhati Roy, ‘another world is possible [and] she is on her way.’ Grassroots International is proud to stand with the US Food Sovereignty Alliance in recognizing and celebrating this year's winners!” 

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

Factory Farming: Bad for People, Planet and Economy

Agriculture at a Crossroads: How Food Systems Affect Biodiversity

How Renewable Energy and Organic Farming Helped Revitalize a Small Italian Town

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

A harbour seal on an ice floe in Glacier Bay, Alaska. A new study shows that the climate crisis has warmed waters, changing ecosystems and crippling sea ice growth. Janette Hill / robertharding / Getty Images Plus

The climate crisis is accelerating the rate of change in Alaska's marine ecosystem far faster than scientists had previously thought, causing possibly irreversible changes, according to new research, as Newsweek reported.

Read More
Doctors report that only 1 in 4 children are getting the recommended 60 minutes of physical activity per day. Ronnie Kaufman / DigitalVision / Getty Images

By Dan Gray

Pediatricians are being urged to start writing "exercise prescriptions" for the children they see in their office.

Read More
Sponsored
A First Nations protester walks in front of a train blockade in Tyendinaga, near Belleville, Ontario, Canada on Feb. 21, 2020. LARS HAGBERG / AFP via Getty Images

An indigenous rail blockade that snarled train travel in Canada for more than two weeks came to an end Monday when police moved in to clear protesters acting in solidarity with another indigenous community in British Columbia (B.C.), which is fighting to keep a natural gas pipeline off its land.

Read More
A rainbow snake, a rare reptile spotted in a Florida county for the first time in more than 50 years, seen here on July 5, 2013. Kevin Enge / FWC Fish and Wildlife Research Institute / Flickr

A Florida hiker recently stumbled across a slithering surprise — a rare snake that hadn't been spotted in the area for more than 50 years.

Read More
We need our government to do everything it can to stop PFAS contamination and exposure from wreaking havoc in communities across the country. LuAnn Hun / Unsplash

By Genna Reed

The EPA announced last week that it is issuing a preliminary regulatory determination for public comment to set an enforceable drinking water standard to two of the most common and well-studied PFAS, PFOA and PFOS.

This decision is based on three criteria:

  1. PFOA and PFOS have an adverse effect on public health
  2. PFOA and PFOS occur in drinking water often enough and at levels of public health concern;
  3. regulation of PFOA and PFOS is a meaningful opportunity for reducing the health risk to those served by public water systems.
Read More