In this historic era of El Salvador’s first left president, the social movement and FMLN are beginning to construct a new, just El Salvador, moving away from the impunity, poverty and forced displacement cultivated under decades of right wing rule. CISPES is proud to support the important work of our partners in El Salvador who are implementing new models of social and economic development and people-centered governance in El Salvador. Please join us in working toward our commitment to raise $10,000 in support of women-led, worker-led and community-based organizing.
FMLN National Women’sSecretariat: $4,500
Women constitute the majority of the population in El Salvador and live with the problems of marginalization, violence and socioeconomic exclusion. In this context, the FMLN’s National Women’s Secretariat organizes women to strengthen their political leadership and participation, mobilize political pressure for government policies to end discrimination and violence against women, providing public education on gender and women’s rights, and promoting policies within the FMLN that encourage women’s political leadership. The Women’s Secretariat will bolster women’s political leadership by organizing regional and national assemblies of women elected officials to coordinate local actions and trainings on gender analysis and strategies to fight discrimination.
Industrial Water Workers’ Union (SITIAGUA):$2,500
For over five years, the Public Water Workers’ Union (SETA) has led the battle against the privatization of El Salvador’s water, organizing hundreds of community water forums to educate rural residents on the risks of water privatization and pushing legislation to make water a human right. A key aspect of SETA’s plan to directly confronted the piecemeal water privatization schemes carried out by past right-wing administrations has been the formation of an industrial water workers’ union, to unite workers across the private-public line in defense of their rights and to defend affordable access to water for the entire country. In early 2010, SETA finally achieved the formation of the industrial water workers’ union, SITIAGUA, that will continue to organize more workers and more local unions at private water companies into 2011. SITIAGUA will also mobilize the local water defense committees that were formed by the community water forums to demand a law that guarantees water as a public right and returns the municipal water systems privatized by the ARENA government to public control.
Youth Project of Mejicanos:$2,000
The National Roundtable Against Metallic Mining in El Salvador (the Mesa) will direct CISPES funds to support on-the-ground mobilizations in Cabañas, the rural center of the Salvadoran anti-mining struggle which has endured multiple assassinations of local activists. Grassroots environmentalist, community, youth, and religious groups in Cabañas have been instrumental in organizing the resistance to Canadian company Pacific Rim Mining and its proposed cyanide-extraction gold mine. With massive marches, rallies and vigils, roadblocks and teach-ins, community organizations effectively pressured the Salvadoran government to deny extraction permits and prevented the company from mining a single ounce of gold. As the Mesa presses for a national ban on metallic mining and supports the Salvadoran government’s legal battle against the $100 million lawsuit filed by Pacific Rim under the “investor protections” chapter of the US-Central American Free Trade Agreement, the local organizing and mobilizing done by local grassroots organizations will be crucial to keeping mining out of Cabañas and out of El Salvador.
Strategic Organizing Fund: $1000
The Strategic Organizing Fund is disbursed to organizations that find themselves in urgent need of funds for mobilizing or organizing an action. In the past, this fund has helped university organizations mobilize for marches, anti-mining organizations mobilize following assassinations of activists, etc. Priority is given to organizations that have limited access to funds from other sources as well as to women and LGBT organizing.