Lifesaver for ages 9 and up -- Ecuador: Speak up for brave defenders of the Amazon
Despite threats to her and her family, Salomé Aranda remains a fearless defender of the Amazon. © Santiago Cornejo/Amazon Watch
This is Salomé Aranda. She is a Kichwa leader. The Kichwa are one of the Indigenous peoples who live in the Amazon region of Ecuador.
Salomé and other Indigenous women try very hard to protect their rivers, forests and lands.
They are worried because the Amazon rainforest is vital to the survival of their people. It can be harmed when companies move in to drill for oil.
When Salomé and other Amazonian Women speak up to expose the damage caused by oil companies and try to stop them, they come under attack. Their families have suffered threats and attacks too.
The goal is to scare Amazonian Women into silence, but the women refuse to give up. That means they continue to face enormous danger.
They have asked us to join them in calling for government action to protect their lives and rights.
Will you speak up to support Salomé and other Amazonian Women as they continue to protect the Amazon rainforest and all life that depends on it? Your letter could be a lifesaver.
WHAT CAN I DO?
Please send a message to the Attorney General of Ecuador. Salomé and three other women have asked this top government official to protect all the Amazonian women and their families, but she has yet to do so.
- Start with Dear Attorney General.
- You could tell her what you know about the Amazon and how important it is to protect it.
- Remind her that Salomé Aranda and other Amazonian Women have the right to express their concerns about the destruction of the rainforest without being afraid of threats and attacks.
- Ask the Attorney General to take quick and effective action to protect them and their families from harm.
WHERE DO I SEND MY MESSAGE?
Attorney General Diana Salazar
Fiscalia General del Estado
Av. Patria y 12 de Octubre Edificio Patria
WHAT ELSE CAN I DO?
Individual letters carry a lot of weight because they are personal. Thank you for writing yours. Petitions help to multiply pressure on Ecuador’s government to act so Amnesty International created one and wants to collect 200,000 signatures for delivery to the government in November. You can help by telling your friends, classmates and neighbours why it’s urgent to protect Amazonian Women. Then print the petition at https://www.amnesty.ca/sites/amnesty/files/Petition_AmazonWomen_May2019.pdf and ask them to sign it with you. Please send petitions back by October 20.
We’d also be happy to deliver personal messages to Salomé and the other Amazonian Women. You could write on it No están solas! Apoyo la lucha por defender el medio ambiente y los derechos de los pueblos indígenas en la Amazonía which means You are not alone. I support your efforts to defend the environment and the rights of Indigenous Peoples in the Amazon. Do this on your own or create a message that is signed by all your friends. Be sure to make it clear that your message comes from Canada. Send your message to
Amazonian Women, Amnesty International, 3-1992 Yonge Street, Toronto M4S 1Z7
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