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    Flashlights & Whistles

    by earwicga on 13th March, 2010 at 8:41 PM    

    Via Madre:

    Flashlights & Whistles: Help Guatemalan Women Organizing Against Femicide

    In the past decade, nearly 4,000 women and young girls have been murdered in Guatemala. Many of them, including girls as young as 10, were tortured and raped, their bodies left in public places.  As a result, women have coined the term “femicide” to describe these widespread, gender-based killings committed with impunity. Of the 383 women’s murder cases in 2003, more than 300 are still awaiting results from police investigations today.

    In response to the murders, women in Guatemala are organizing to protect each other. MADRE’s sister organization, the Women Workers’ Committee in Guatemala, has created neighborhood watch groups in their communities. Sandra Gonzales of the Women Workers’ Committee describes the violence as “getting worse every day.” However, she says “with your help we can continue to defend human rights for all women.”

    You can help these women by providing whistles and flashlights for the neighborhood watch. According to Sandra, “flashlights and whistles are essential to providing security for women and girls in our community,” where there are no street lights and no reliable police protection.

    If you don’t have the supplies to donate, but still want to make a contribution, you can make a monetary donation to help alleviate the costs of shipping the whistles and flashlights to Guatemala.

    How to Donate Supplies

    Simply mail your donation to:

    Attn: Helping Hands
    121 West 27th Street Suite 301
    New York, NY 10001

    Helping Hands can pick up your donation in Manhattan if it is too large for you to mail. You may also drop off your donation at the address above during our business hours, 9:30 am – 6:00 pm

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    Filed in: Current affairs

    6 Comments below   |   Add your own

    Reactions: Twitter, blogs

    1. Laban — on 13th March, 2010 at 11:42 PM  

      I would have thought during the same period 3,000-odd women would have been murdered in England and Wales, given 10 years of murders at around 900 pa.

    2. earwicga — on 14th March, 2010 at 12:22 AM  

      2008 figures for England & Wales record 78 murders of women. http://www.justice.gov.uk/publications/docs/coroners-deaths-reported-2008.pdf

      Population of England & Wales (2001 Census) 52,041,916
      Population of Guatemala (2008 World Bank) 13,675,714

      (Population of UK (2008 World Bank) 61,399,118)

      Guatemala: No protection, no justice: killings of women in Guatemala (2005)

      Guatemala: No protection, no justice: killings of women (an update) (2006)

    3. MiriamBinder — on 14th March, 2010 at 10:05 AM  

      I wonder whether Laban is of the opinion that because women get murdered in the UK we needn’t concern ourselves with femicide in Guatamala?

      I’ve decided that possibly something along the lines of the Illuminator Wind Up Flashlight is probably the best thing to send as it will require neither batteries not bulbs in the future.

    4. earwicga — on 14th March, 2010 at 3:10 PM  

      That’s a brilliant plan Miriam. It’s such a simple request from the Women’s Workers Comittee but has the potential to be very efffective.

    5. Don — on 14th March, 2010 at 7:15 PM  


      Why on earth would you comment on the stats without taking a moment to check them? It’s time-wasting.

    6. Rumbold — on 14th March, 2010 at 8:41 PM  

      Thanks for highlighting this Earwiga.

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