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Women's Earth and Climate Action Network (WECAN) International
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Women for Ratifying the Escazú Agreement

Please join The Women’s Earth and Climate Action Network (WECAN) and Reacción Climática for this educational and advocacy online forum to learn more about the Escazú Agreement, a game-changing environmental policy in Laitn American and the Caribbean, and how you can advocate for the ratification and full implementation of this vital piece of legislation that can protect diverse ecosystems essential to our global climate and can protect the defenders of the land. Spanish and English simultaneous translation services will be provided during the forum. Durante el foro se brindarán servicios de traducción simultánea en español e inglés.

In Latin America and the Caribbean, the Regional Agreement on Access to Information, Public Participation and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters, known as the Escazú Agreement, guarantees the full and effective implementation of the rights to environmental information, public participation in the process of decision making, capacity building, empowerment, and cooperation. The Escazú Agreement promises to be a vital game-changer in the region in the way environmental issues are addressed, reinforcing the fact that multilateralism, as well as public participation, are essential in facing environmental crises and upholding human and Indigenous rights. Even though 24 countries adopted the Escazú Agreement, countries have shown a lack of political will to officially sign and ratify the Agreement, The Escazú Agreement must be ratified by 11 countries for it to enter into full force for all countries in Latin America and the Caribbean. To date, 9 countries have ratified the agreement.

During this online forum women policy makers, Indigenous leaders, and human rights defenders will highlight the challenges women face in securing human and Indigenous rights, participating in climate policy, and sharing the importance for the ratification of the Escazú Agreement. Our goal is to engage regional stakeholders, with the backing of civil society, in the Escazú Agreement with the aim of securing two more countries to ratify the agreement, in order for it to enter into force next year (2021). We will also discuss how the Escazú Agreement can be a powerful tool for Women Environmental and Human Rights Defenders (WEHRD) in order to protect their human rights, to be able to analyze legal frameworks that allow WEHRD to carry on with their work with the awareness that Escazú Agreement can help them accomplish their work in a safe and more effective manner.

Speakers to date include: Patricia Gualinga, Kichwa leader from Sarayaku, Ecuador Spokeswoman for Mujeres Amazónicas Defensoras de la Selva (Ecuador); María Luisa Rafael, Quechua leader, Human Rights and Environmental activist (Bolivia); Ruth Spencer, GEF/SGP National Coordinator (Antigua and Barbuda); H.E. Ms. Patricia Madrigal Cordero, Ex-Vice-minister of Environment (Republic of Costa Rica); Ana Llácer, Journalist, Filmmaker & Environmental Activist (Spain & USA); Carmen Capriles, Founder of Reacción Climática, WECAN Coordinator for Latin America (Bolivia); Paloma Costa, youth climate leader (Brazil); with facilitation and comments by Osprey Orielle Lake Executive Director of WECAN International (USA). The women speakers are representing the leaders on the frontlines, international policymakers, and Escazú advocates who are also the inspiration for alternatives and solutions for a healthy and just world at this critical time of multiple expanding crises.