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Peasant Unity Committee (CUC)
Created in 1978, the Peasant Unity Committee (CUC) was the first national organization formed by peasants and indigenous people in Guatemala. CUC is represented in over 200 communities and 6 micro-regions of the country. The organization is dedicated to rights to land, water and food sovereignty in impoverished peasant communities in Guatemala. Its approach includes:
- Access, use, caring, and respect for Mother Earth;
- Farmworkers’ rights;
- Community-based development;
- Identity and rights of Indigenous Peoples;
- Gender equity;
- Organizational strengthening through leadership development, communication, resources, solidarity and international cooperation;
CUC provides legal and organizational support to communities affected by large infrastructure projects such as mining, dams and agro-fuels plantations that are implemented without the prior consent of local families. Extractive industries in Guatemala represent the main cause of forced displacement.
CUC has been an anchor organization for one of the most exciting and potentially powerful movement-building efforts in Guatemala, known as “La Marcha” - The March of Indigenous Peoples, Peasants, and Grassroots Communities. Fifteen organizations of peasants, indigenous peoples, women, and youth joined CUC in the initial organization of the march. Since its beginning, La Marcha has grown to a broad movement in defense of land and territorial rights of indigenous and peasant communities and in resistance to large infrastructure projects that are not prior consulted with the communities that will be affected.
CUC is member of the Latin American Coordination of Rural Organizations (CLOC) and the Via Campesina.