International Funders for Indigenous Peoples (IFIP) and The Circle on Philanthropy and Aboriginal Peoples in Canada (The Circle) jointly denounce the actions of the government of Philippines against a number of Indigenous leaders and groups. In February 2018, the government of the Philippines filed a legal petition to have a number of organizations and persons declared as terrorist and outlaws including Vicky Tauli-Corpuz, the UN Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and Joan Carling, Co-convener of the Indigenous Peoples Major Group on Sustainable Development.
Around the world, Indigenous activists are on the frontlines protecting their homelands, culture and lifeways in the face of increasing threats and criminalization of dissent. In addition, Indigenous activists are also at the forefront protecting community and ecological diversity globally.
IFIP and The Circle call on the philanthropic community to be in solidarity with Indigenous defenders in the Philippines. As philanthropic organizations we appreciate that Indigenous Peoples around the globe are placing themselves in harms way to fulfill a mission we share. We recognize that funders need to fulfill their responsibility to provide flexible resources and support and witness to ensure that they are able to undertake their important work as safely as possible.
IFIP, an affinity group of global donors that fosters partnerships and strengthens coordination among funders to amplify resources to Indigenous-led groups and movements, firmly believes that governments and the international community must prioritize the safety and security of Indigenous human rights defenders in the face of attacks from state and non-state actors and respect the human rights of Indigenous Peoples.
The Circle on Philanthropy and Aboriginal Peoples in Canada (The Circle) transforms philanthropy and contributes to positive change with Indigenous communities by creating spaces of learning, innovation, relationship-building, co-creation and activation. The Circle is unwavering in our stance that governments, and the international community must honor the United Nation’s Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
Below are some resources and statements on what’s unfolding in the Philippines:
IFIP’s Call to Action to Defend the Defenders and Activists appealed to funders to support the efforts of Indigenous groups and movements as they advocate for their individual and collective rights and protection of their ancestral territories.
Cultural Survival interview with Vicky Tauli-Corpuz on the terrorism charge by the Philippine government
Indigenous Peoples Major Group’s statement on accusation against Joan Carling
Here is a link to 5 Actions you can take to Stand in Solidarity with Indigenous Leaders in the Philippines