Historically, indigenous women are not recognized in any workplace, are not even incorporated into active participation, and are usually made invisible. But why?.
A recent study called “Brochure: Indigenous Women” conducted by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) in conjunction with the Organization of American States (OAS) revealed that the detailed picture of the situation of indigenous women shows current challenges and they are subject to various types of structural discrimination, that is, political, social and economic exclusion. Therefore, there are very few opportunities for the labor sector, lack of access to health and education services, limitations to literacy, and marginalization of programs and initiatives. All these impacts generated by society make indigenous women develop a leading role in which they can and have the right to participate in inclusion, diversification, gender equality, and equity projects.
The data collected shows that only 1 in 10 indigenous girls finish secondary school in Latin America. However, the lack of services, food, and application to the labor sector creates more vulnerability in them as indigenous women. These barriers are forms of discrimination based on gender, ethnicity, race, and economic situations, implying serious consequences in diseases, rapes, and forced sterilizations.
On the other hand, the impact indigenous women experience every day increases their vulnerability and puts women and girls at risk. That is why this sector of women requires effective collaboration from States.
Indigenous Women Demand Respect for All Their Rights
A report called “Realities of Indigenous Women: A Look from the Indigenous Navigator” by Gabriela Balvedi of the Gender, Equality and Diversity Service of the International Labour Organization (ILO) revealed that the participation of indigenous women is crucial and emphasizes the right to improve their living conditions, both economic, as social. The study’s findings show that its purpose is to identify and examine the experiences, requirements, concerns, and aspirations of indigenous women, to reduce the gaps and vulnerabilities that exist in them.
This approach intensified the efforts of the various entities to guarantee the equal rights that indigenous women have suffered consistently for decades. However, in recent years, programs and initiatives have emerged where the participation of indigenous women is really encouraging and hence the promotion of their aspirations.
On the other hand, there are cases of indigenous women with disabilities. The situation worsens, and they are more exposed to greater risks, such as violence, domestic abuse, and social isolation. That is why indigenous women and girls have contributed their ideas to rebuild their empowerment and the new transformation of gender equality.
Barriers Faced by Indigenous Women and Girls
A report analyzed by UN Women in conjunction with the Fund for the Development of Indigenous Peoples of Latin America and the Caribbean (FILAC) indicated that the presence of women increased from 15% to 31%, that is, their active participation doubled. In addition, it states that indigenous women are capable of facing higher levels of violence in general. In short, this perspective must be presented as a special action in which, with various instruments, indigenous women and girls are protected by entities that guarantee the enjoyment of their rights.