Delegation Report: Continuing the Resistance in Honduras
Our delegation journeyed to Honduras on August 10, 2010 and quickly began to learn just how brutal the current regime's repression against the Honduran peoples' movements continues to be.
You can take action by signing the petition above to urge your Congressperson to sign onto a Dear Colleague letter to the Obama administration, calling for a cut to US support for the coup and its perpetrators.
At the same time we were incredibly inspired by the cross-cultural solidarity into which we were received, and strived to cultivate that ourselves, a very diverse group of activists and organizers of many ages, genders, races, classes, sexualities, religions and abilities.
It became very clear that the work being done in Honduras to counter the neoliberal project that's trying to divide people and maximize profit off labor and resources is very linked to the similar struggles we face in our own communities in the United States.
Since we've returned, repression has increased against the mass mobilization of teachers and against a small community radio station in resistance on the Pacific coast of Honduras.
50,000 teachers have taken to the streets in Honduras in recent weeks, defending poor and working class students (the coup regime is pushing the privatization of the last 5 years of high school) and protesting the theft of billions of lempira from their pensions, money stolen by the illegally appointed new education minister Ventura. This week the police raided the National Pedalogical University, beating protesters and arresting four leaders.
Many teachers are also protesting in solidarity with three union members from SITRAUNAH, the National Autonomous University, who went on hunger strike many weeks ago. The hunger strikers demand respect for SITRAUNAH's collective bargaining rights, and the reinstatement of the 124 workers whose jobs were terminated this spring for their participation in political dissent and resistance.
In Zacate Grande, a peninsula on the Pacific coast of Honduras, there has been a land struggle between the working class farmers who have lived there for and worked the land for generations without ever using land titles, and Miguel Facusse, one of a tiny, tiny elite circle that owns the majority of land in Honduras. In June, police raided the community radio station and continue to threaten those who continue to struggle for their land and self-determination in Zacate Grande. Just days after our delegation visited, police and military returned with Facusse agents and left three members of the community badly wounded.
Here is a letter detailing our concern for human rights in relation to US policy, hand delivered to the US embassy in Tegucigalpa. A full delegation report is forthcoming, and our thoughts, hopes, prayers and actions are with the Resistance that struggles to build a new Honduras.