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“Women are on the frontline of defending rights and the environment”

This was the third meeting of Friends of the Earth International´s Working Group since it was created. From May 2 to 5, its members analyzed what has been done so far and the steps to follow.

Friends of the Earth International (FoEI) seeks to mainstream the feminist perspective and gender justice in all its programs, campaigns and member groups. Real World Radio interviewed three members of the Gender Justice and Dismantling Patriarchy Working Group [1]: Dipti Bhatnagar, Samantha Castro and Ivana Kulic.

Dipti is co-coordinator of the Climate Justice & Energy program at FoEI and a member of Justiça Ambiental (JA! FoE Mozambique), Ivana is an activist from the Center for Environment (FOE Bosnia and Herzegovina) and Samantha is the operations coordinator of FOE Melbourne and is part of the Secretary of FOE Australia.

They agree on the need to link how patriarchy plays a role in getting people to this point of crisis in our planet. “Capitalism, as an oppressive system, is using patriarchy as a tool of oppression directly on women and other marginalized groups”, stated Kulic.

Castro is convinced that women are part of the solution. “Future is female”, she said and provided an example: “The campaigns that we are involved in are mainly organized by women”.

For the Australian activist it is “central” to show solidarity and support those fights starred by women.  In that sense, Friends of the Earth International is developing alliances with feminist movements (including the World March of Women), as they did a while ago with farmers and peasant movements (like Via Campesina), trade unions and other environmental justice organizations.

Bhatnagar added that, with those allies, Friends of the Earth International could advance in its vision of the world which is changing the system and making sure that all people live in dignity, whitin the means provided  by the environment.