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Take part in creating a peoples’ framework to eradicate hunger!

Background

The right to adequate food is a basic human right, but about 30 000 people die every day of hunger and hunger related causes and the number of hungry people is about one billion. About half of the hungry people are peasants and their families, about 10 percent are pastoralists, forest-dependent and fisherfolks.  The hunger situation is totally unacceptable, and the financial crises and the climate crises will create more hunger and poverty.
Hunger is not a technical, but a political issue.  Most governments and international institutions have been following and promoting policies which have preserved and created hunger. Several action plans and declarations have been made by these institutions and governments to reduce hunger.  The latest is The Comprehensive Framework for Action from The High-Level Task Force on the Global Foodsecurity Crisis which was established by the UN General Secretary Ban Ki-moon during the food crisis in 2008. This framework has many points which the social movements agree on, but at the same time it promotes more trade liberalization, unsustainable agriculture with high input of chemical fertilizer, agrochemicals etc, and more power to the multinational companies and the World Bank – more of the policies which have created and preserved hunger and poverty.

Our alternatives

People, social movements and other civil society organizations (CSO’s) are constantly fighting against hunger and poverty. There are lots of experiences of what is needed to eradicate hunger.  Social movements have also developed policies and plans for the struggle and alternatives to the currant dominating policies. Food sovereignty has been developed the last 15 years as the alternative for food and agriculture. A peoples’ comprehensive framework for action against hunger must be based on and support the realization of food sovereignty.
The industrial model of agriculture and fisheries is not environmental or socially sustainable. Food sovereignty represents an alternative to the industrialized model, as well as to the policies of the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the international finance institutions.  There are plenty of experiences to build on for agro-ecological and other sustainable production methods, and for alternatives to the neoliberal trade-model.
Also when it comes to emergency support and social security nets for hungry people, we have a lot of positive and negative experiences to build on.

We need to develop a Peoples’ comprehensive framework to eradicate hunger

Even if we have the overall policies needed to eradicate hunger and a lot of experiences and concrete proposals, we as social movements and CSO’s need to concretize our policies and to develop common policies on several issues.  To do that is important to strengthen the fight against hunger and for food sovereignty, and it is important to challenge governments and international institutions. 

The International Planning Committee for Food Sovereignty (IPC) decided therefore in its last meeting, in January 2009, to develop a Peoples’ comprehensive framework to eradicate hunger if there is sufficient support from the social movements within IPC to do it. The More and Better Campaign (MaB) which many of the organizations within IPC are taking part in, has already decided to develop such a framework, and wants to work in close collaboration with IPC to make one common framework.
Our framework should contain of both overall general policies and concrete actions. It must be based on food sovereignty and concretize food sovereignty into the context of the fight against hunger. It also has to propose policies and actions for social security nets,  emergency relief etc.  The documents from Food Sovereignty Forum in 2002, Nyéléni 2007, the sign on letter before the UN High-level meeting on the food crises and the Terra Preta conference  in June 2008, should be the base for the framework.
It is important that the organizations of farmers, pastoralists, fisherfolks and indigenous peoples, and, not least, the women within these organizations, play the key role in developing the peoples’ framework against hunger. We also need to involve organizations of the poor in urban areas. Also other social organizations and NGOs have important roles to play in developing the framework.

The framework will be developed in an open, inclusive and transparent way where every organization can be heard. The working languages for the international process will be English, French and Spanish.

The process

1. An editing group with five people and a drafting committee with about 20 people from social movements and NGOs have been  established. 
2. The editing group will make a rough proposal for the outline of the peoples’ framework against hunger by the end of May 2009. This will be discussed in the drafting committee and rewritten to be sent out in July for wider consultations.
3. We ask all organizations, networks and people who want to take part in this work  to send in as soon as possible their proposals, programs etc about how to eradicate hunger. We also encourage to organize discussions, workshops etc in the coming months to come with more input and  comments to the drafts for the peoples’ frameworks  when drafts are sent out.
4. The drafting committee will meet again in the beginning of September to finalize the framework on the background of inputs from organizations and people.
5. Organizations will be invited to sign on to the framework in the end of September.6. The peoples’ framework  will be presented in the meeting in October of FAO’s Committee on World Food Security (CFS).   

Contact people

Nico Verhagen, from La Via Campesina secretariat; nverhagen@viacampesina.org
Aksel Naerstad, International coordinator of More and Better; aksel@utviklingsfondet.no

Related documents

People Framework To Eradicate Hunger May2009 EN | Download - 36.5KB

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