Prevent Eviction of Indigenous Community

Nicolas Raymond

Target:  José Eduardo Martins Cardozo, Minister of Justice

Goal: Prevent the forced eviction of the Apika’y indigenous community.

For years, the Apika’y community of Brazil has lived in desperate conditions. However, now even those are at risk, as a recent judicial decision may allow the Apika’y to be forcibly evicted from their land, an action that would leave the entire community homeless. Sign the petition and demand that the Apika’y not be evicted, and that they be granted adequate land and resources as they await a decision that may return to them their ancestral lands.

The Apika’y community lives along a stretch of highway on land sandwiched between a large sugar farm and a patch of woods. Their only source of water for bathing, cooking, and drinking is a polluted stream, and they have little access to medical care. Their encampment includes no sanitary facilities, and their housing is substandard, cobbled together from whatever community members can find.

Brazil is currently in the process of returning indigenous peoples to their ancestral lands, and the Apika’y have been living in their current location as they await a ruling on a much larger piece of territory. The ruling that resulted in their eviction notice overturned an earlier court ruling that ordered the Brazilian government to provide the community with 30 hectares of land pending a decision on the larger property. The community currently lives on just 5 hectares.

No members of the community were consulted regarding their potential eviction, and they were initially given just ten days’ notice. These condition are unacceptable.

The Apika’y deserve a parcel of land where they can live in dignity, health, and safety. Pending a decision on their ancestral territory, they must be provided with a larger parcel of land on which to live, and they must not be evicted from this one without due course. Sign the petition and stand with the Apika’y community in defense of their rights.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Minister,

I am writing to express my disgust at the Brazilian government’s treatment of the Apika’y community, also known as  Curral do Arame. The attempted forced eviction of this community–already forced to survive in substandard conditions on a too-small piece of land–is an injustice and an insult to the dignity of the people who live there. I urge you to halt the forced eviction and to work with community members to establish an adequate temporary territory for the Apika’y as they await a decision on whether they will be allowed access to a larger parcel of their ancestral territory.

The current conditions under which the Apika’y live are harsh: their homes are built using only the scant resources they have at hand. There are no sanitary facilities and little access to medical care. The only water source is a polluted stream. And because of the settlement’s proximity to the highway, eight community members have been killed in car accidents in the past four years alone.

The community was initially given just ten days’ notice of their eviction. No alternative living arrangements were offered or provided, which would render the entire community homeless. Forced evictions like this one violate human rights and are not in keeping with Brazil’s obligations to both its own citizens and the world community.

I urge you to ensure that the Apika’y are not evicted from their current lands. I also demand that they be granted alternative territory as soon as possible, where they can live in dignity, health, and safety. Finally, I urge you to expedite the legal process by which the Apika’y can regain access to their ancestral lands; they have been waiting long enough.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Nicolas Raymond

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