Webinar 1: COVID-19 and Public Health: Indigenous Peoples on the Front Line

Organisers:  The Tenure Facility, Land Portal and Ford Foundation.

When: Wednesday, September 2nd, 9:00 AM-10:30 AM EST (3:00 PM – 4:30 PM CEST)

Where: Online. Register Here.

Three-quarters of emerging infectious diseases are zoonoses, meaning they are transmitted from animals to humans, some examples are Ebola, SARS, MERS and now COVID-19. Scientists warn us that deforestation, industrial agriculture, illegal wildlife trade, overall climate change and other types of environmental degradation increase the risk of future pandemics.

The COVID-19 pandemic poses a great threat to Indigenous Peoples around the world. Indigenous communities already experience poor access to healthcare, significantly higher rates of communicable diseases and lack of access to essential services like sanitation. Local medical facilities are often under-equipped and under-staffed. Even when Indigenous Peoples are able to access healthcare services, they tend to face stigma and discrimination.

This webinar will discuss the connection between land rights, climate and Indigenous Peoples´health. Basing the discussion on the evidence environmental degradation and poor resources management will bring more zoo-tropic diseases. Officials from the World Health Organisation (WHO), the United Nations (UN) and the World Wildlife Fund International (WWF) have directly linked the emergence of pandemics like Coronavirus to our “broken relationship with nature,” epitomized by the destruction of natural habitats and the collapse of biodiversity. They call for a shift back to ecological and ecosystem integrity, sustainable co-existence with the natural world, values which have underpinned indigenous values for centuries, making Indigenous Peoples key actors in the battle to mitigate and adapt to climate change.

Watch the replay here!