Brazil Environment Fascism Human Rights International Racism

Caiçaras Traditional Lifestyle, and Livelihood, Under Threat from Bolsonaro’s Brazil

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Bolsonaro’s policies threaten the traditional inhabitants of the coastal regions of the south eastern and southern Brazil.

Yesterday, three houses of Caiçaras in the ecological station Juréia- Itatins, Brazil, were demolished by state agents on the grounds that they occupied an illegal area.

Caiçaras are the traditional inhabitants of the coastal regions of the southeastern and southern Brazil, and they are fighting against the real estate speculation that threatens their way of life. In this particular case, hundreds of families are fighting against the removal in the name of a pseudo-environmental protection. They say that since the 1980’s they have been deceived. There was the expectation that it would be a “sanctuary” for man and nature. Today, however, only nine families have resisted the pressures from government and corporation alike, scattered throughout the almost 850 square kilometres.

Many already have left because of government sanctions to their basic rights to fishing, small subsistence agriculture and access to public services (school and health care). Arbitrary fines are also a big problem – the government was applying fines over the sustainable extraction of “wood to make rowing boats,” ignoring their bicentennial traditions.

After years of struggle, the Caiçaras managed to make two areas go from “restrictive”, that is, without human presence, to Sustainable Development Reserves. The initial idea was to put them in charge of the conservation of territory, letting the traditional populations act as agents of ecological preservation.

The Commission on Human Rights Defense published a manifesto, repudiating the authorities decision of removing and demolishing the Caiçaras houses.

by Nathália Urban
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