Petition Tag - guatemala

1. Justice for Nancy Bailey

Nancy Bailey, a 64 year-old U.S. citizen, humanitarian and child advocate in Guatemala needs our advocacy. She has saved the lives of and provided brighter futures for thousands of Guatemalan children over the last 26 years. She is currently fighting for her own future, wrongly accused of child trafficking.

Adoption has become criminalized in Guatemala due to grossly inaccurate blanket accusations that all adoption providers and practices were corrupt. In a country wrought with poverty and corruption, an individual is considered and treated as guilty until proven innocent. It will be nearly impossible for Nancy to receive a fair trial without U.S. intervention.

Background :

-For 26 years, Nancy Bailey has been in service to the children of Guatemala providing a loving safe haven at her children's home, Semillas de Amor (Seeds of Love)
-Semillas de Amor is a model for excellent care for orphaned and abandoned children - with low caregiver ratios, good schooling, and counsel for children dealing with the trauma of abandonment.
-Semillas de Amor has placed many children into permanent families through international adoption
-Despite adoptions closing in 2009 and losing adoption related income, Nancy remained steadfast in her life's work to keep Semillas de Amor open for the children in her care
-While out of the country briefly in 2012, Nancy was charged with child trafficking when the Guatemalan authorities raided Semillas de Amor and her personal home
-The charges are based on alleged irregularities found in 3 cases at Semillas de Amor
-Nancy returned to Guatemala in December 2014 to be with her children despite knowing she would likely be arrested
-For the first 16 months of her incarceration (without a trial), Nancy was on house arrest with no supervision
-For the last year, Nancy has been detained in prison with a few intermittent hospital stays due to fibromyalgia and respiratory issues
-Nancy had continued to fundraise to keep the home open despite her unjust incarceration and failing health
-Over the last two years, Nancy’s health and spirits have deteriorated greatly while the children of Semillas are being raised without their "mother"

In addition to the unjust treatment thus far, we have many reasons to believe Nancy Bailey will not receive a fair trial in Guatemala:

- Mass corruption in the Guatemala judicial system - Guatemala currently ranked 40th most corrupt nation (out of 176)
- Anti-American sentiment in Guatemala
- The criminalization of adoption via the grossly inaccurate blanket accusations that all Guatemalan-U.S. adoptions are corrupt

2. 1 Million Signatures to protect the Mesoamerican Reef

Headline: Speak Out to Protect the Mesoamerican Reef

The Mesoamerican Reef is located in the Caribbean Sea and touches the coasts of Mexico, Belize, Guatemala and Honduras. As the largest barrier reef in the Western Hemisphere, it stretches nearly 1000 km from the northern tip of the Yucatan Peninsula down through the Honduran Bay Islands, and provides a home to hundreds of fish species, marine turtles, and sharks.

On June 5 of 2017 we will celebrate 20 years of the Tulum Declaration, by which the heads of state of the four countries, Mexico, Belize, Guatemala and Honduras, committed to promote the conservation of the Mesoamerican Reef System (MAR) through its sustainable use, thereby contributing to the wellbeing of present and future generations. Over the past 20 years, the four countries have taken important steps, as envisioned.

3. EA Sports FIFA

Hello my name is Francisco L. I want everyone to join me in this petition to EA Sports to include the leagues of Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador and Costa Rica in the FIFA video game. We have seen new leagues in almost every new release of the most popular video game in the world but we haven't seen love for the Central American region.

4. BTS en Guatemala (Bring BTS to Guatemala)

BTS es uno de los grupos más influyentes en la escena Hallyu actual, rompiendo barreras de idioma y cultura. Guatemala no es ajena a tal influencia, por lo que desde el debut del grupo en junio de 2013, la cantidad de fanáticos y fanáticas de BTS se ha visto en exponencial crecimiento.

Por esta misma razón, y tomando en cuenta el interés de una de las promotoras de entretenimiento del pais (Noches VIP), la comunidad de apoyo a BTS en Guatemala solicita la firma de cada interesado e interesada en que el grupo surcoreano realice un concierto en territorio guatemalteco. Dicha compilación de firmas será mostrada a la promotora en cuestión, así como a la empresa responsable de las actividades de BTS (Bug Hit Entertainment).

5. Trafico Carretera a El Salvador

Vecinos carretera a El Salvador y demás usuarios;

Solicitamos buscar una solución inmediata a mediano y largo plazo y audiencia para ser escuchados con relación al trafico que ocurre diariamente en carretera a El Salvador. Debido al crecimiento desmesurado de nuevos proyectos habitacionales, comerciales y educativos a causado un descontrol en el trafico vehicular, especialmente a horas pico, muchos hemos tardado hasta dos horas en llegar a nuestro destino.

La petición va dirigida a:
Municipalidad de Guatemala, departamento de Guatemala
Municipalidad de San José Pinula del departamento de Guatemala
Municipalidad de Fraijanes del departamento de Guatemala
Municipalidad de Santa Catarina Pinula del departamento de Guatemala
Municipalidad de Villa Canales del departamento de Guatemala
Ministerio de Comunicaciones Infraestructura y Vivienda
Ministerio de Gobernación

6. Justicia por la muerte de Facundo Cabral

By Mike McDonald

GUATEMALA CITY | Sat Jul 9, 2011 4:30pm EDT
(Reuters) - Argentine singer Facundo Cabral, one of the stars of Latin American folk music, was shot dead in Guatemala City early on Saturday when gunmen riddled his car with bullets, authorities said.

Cabral, who rose to fame in the 1970s as a protest singer, was on his way to the airport when three vehicles boxed in his white Range Rover and opened fire, killing him and injuring his driver, Guatemala's Interior Minister Carlos Menocal said.

Police earlier said the driver was killed.

Born to a poor family in 1937, the outspoken Cabral was best known for his 1970 song "No Soy De Aqui, Ni Soy De Alla," ("I'm Not From Here, I'm Not From There Either") which was covered by many other artists including Julio Iglesias.

Cabral went into exile in Mexico during Argentina's 1976-1983 military dictatorship. His songs later turned more spiritual and he continued to fill concert halls across Latin America. He had been in the Central American country on tour.

Argentine television stations interrupted their broadcasts with news of the 74-year-old singer's death.

Guatemalan president Alvaro Colom vowed swift action.

"We will find these criminals and bring them to justice," he told Argentine radio.

Colom said he spoke to Argentine President Cristina Fernandez to offer his condolences for the killing, the motive for which was unclear. Guatemala, one of the region's poorest countries, has one of Latin America's highest murder rates.

Guatemalan authorities said the gunmen peppered Cabral's car with 18 bullets in an exchange of fire with the singer's security detail, which was in a separate vehicle.

His driver, businessman Henry Farina, was injured, along with one person from Cabral's security detail. Enrique Vaca Narvaja, Argentina's consul to Guatemala, told Argentine television Farina may also have been a target.

Cabral was mourned by fans across Latin America. Argentine Foreign Minister Hector Timerman paid tribute to the singer.

"The murder of Facundo Cabral in Guatemala brings us great sadness," he wrote on his Twitter account. "Adios amigo!"

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez followed suit: "We are weeping with Argentina."

Edgar Palacios, 54, a fan in Guatemala City, said the singer would not be forgotten.

"Facundo Cabral died but his music will never die, just like John Lennon died but his music never died," he said. "Cabral wasn't just from one country. He was a universal man."

Guatemala has been racked by incursions from Mexican drug gangs, notably the brutal Zetas cartel.

Colom has struggled to contain the violence and Cabral's murder is an embarrassment to the president just two months before a first round of presidential elections which polls show his center-left National Union of Hope party (UNE) may lose. Colom himself is barred by law from seeking re-election.

7. Thank You Senator Landrieu!

The children and families of pending adoptions in Guatemala have been waiting anywhere from 3 to 8 years for the process to complete.

Louisiana Senator Mary Landrieu recently traveled to Guatemala to meet with President Alvaro Colom as well as the heads of the various entities that govern Guatemalan adoption in an effort to break the gridlock that these children's cases have encountered.

For this amazing devotion, the Guatemala900 offers this letter of thanks to Senator Landrieu.

8. Guatemala 900 Mother's Day Plea

This Mother’s Day will be, at minimum, the third to pass for many families still awaiting the homecoming of their adopted children.

January 1, 2008 marked the dissolution of the former Guatemalan notarial adoption system. This action, along with the ratification of the Hague Adoption Convention and initiation of a new adoption law, was strongly endorsed by the U.S. Department of State and UNICEF. In good faith, American families continued to initiate new adoptions through December 31, 2007, guaranteed the protections and practices of the former notarial system under Article 56 of the Ortega Law (Articulo 56 of the Ley de Adopciones (Decreto 77-2007).

Article 56. "Adoptions in process. All the notarial and judicial processes of adoption that are still being processed at the moment when the present law becomes effective, must be registered at the Central Authority, in a term no longer than thirty days, for the effects of the registration of the case, these will continue its process in conformity with the law in effect at the time of its initiation. The cases that are not registration within the term stated will be resolved according to the procedures stated in this law”.


Today, hundreds of Guatemalan children continue to languish in institutions awaited by U.S. families while their “grandfathered” adoptions tarry in political gridlock. The rights ensured in Article 56 have been violated as these cases are scrutinized without transparency outside the practices and protections of the law. Months to years have been added to wait times as families are required to jump through bureaucratic hoops, meet deadlines (some undisclosed), endure mutiple birth mother interviews, and undergo investigations by outside authorities; all beyond the required grandfathered procedures and protections.

As awaiting families, our concerns turn to panic as attempts increase to illegally delay and terminate in-process adoptions. Since the law changed over two years ago, authorities have waged a war on adoption in which families and children have become collateral damage. When we entered into these adoptions as a humanistic endeavor to love and embrace these children as our own, we were unprepared for the violations that lay ahead: illegal raids on children's homes, wrongful seizure of children with their whereabouts undisclosed to their adoptive families, prevention of visitation rights for adoptive families, harassment and bribery of birth mothers, violations of Guatemalan women’s rights to privacy and to choose an adoption plan for their children, and enforced placement of children with extended birth family members who are unwilling and/or unable to care for them are just some of the injustices we have witnessed and endured. Today, the forward motion of all in-process adoptions has virtually ceased as a cycle of fear and retribution has taken hold. Immediate senior level government intervention is needed to end this cycle and allow righteous and fair procedures to prevail.

If these adoptions are allowed to come to their completion, they certainly will not have occurred in an expeditious manner as Article 35 of the Hague Adoption Convention urges. The cornerstone of the convention is the cooperation between states (Article 7). We need the U.S. and Guatemalan governments to work together to determine an immediate and expeditious path to process our adoptions.

The efforts to serve and protect the innocent are failing them as they lose their childhood one day, month, and now, year at a time. Long-term emotional and physical consequences are inevitable as these children languish in under funded institutions and foster care. It grows increasingly difficult for children to be placed successfully within loving families as their spirit and salvation wither outside permanent parenting. Developmental delays, psychological damage, and severe struggles to bond are just some of the many challenges families must prepare for. With every day that passes, innocence wanes for the children who have stopped believing anyone wants them. As families fight desperately to adopt these children they endure sleepless nights and anxiety filled days not knowing if they will ever be able to bring them home. With financial hardship and constant worry resulting in hopelessness, we ask, “Who will finally put an end to this needless suffering and unite our families?”

The dissolution of the former adoption system, along with allegations of fraud in specific cases, has lead to a standstill that is violating children’s rights to a family and families’ rights to a fair and legal adoption.

All those associated with Guatemala 900 believe strongly in the sanctity of family. We value and celebrate legitimate, legal adoption practice and abhor any type of unethical action that may deny a birth family of their basic human rights. We advocate for adoption reform and applaud the Guatemalan government’s efforts to end corruption and prevent the abuse of children and birth families.

We must work together to uphold the law and ensure that the actions of corrupt individuals in specific cases does not lead to additional bureaucratic delay for the families and children who are innocent. We must prevent further harm to hundreds of awaiting families and thousands of orphaned and abandoned children whose cases are legitimate and legal.

references:

HCCH. Convention On Protection Of Children And Co-Operation In Respect Of Intercountry Adoption. 29 MAY 1993. p. 8. http://www.hcch.net/index_en.php?act=conventions.pdf&cid=69

HCCH. Guide To Good Practice Under The Hague Convention Of 29 May 1993 On Protection Of Children And Co-Operation In Respect Of Intercountry Adoption. APRIL 2008. p. 95. http://www.hcch.net/upload/00037643.doc

9. ALTO A LA VIOLENCIA EN GUATEMALA!

En Guatemala se ha llegado al punto que ya no hay medida ni posibilidades de evadir la violencia, hasta niños en brazos de sus madres alcanza las balas perdidas. Esto denota una descomposicion social extrema, pues ya no se puede viajar tranquilamente con la minima seguridad en el transporte publico, o en un carro particular, o caminar por las calles. Hay una sensacion de impotencia y vulnerabilidad en los ciudadanos y lo peor es que no hacemos nada al respecto.

Todos los que nacimos en esta eterna primavera, tenemos el deber y la obligacion de levantar nuestras voces y exigir seguridad, paz ....respeto a la vida. Porque de no hacerlo HOY, mañana nuestros hijos, nuestros nietos....nuestra familia, seran personas resentidas, psicologicamente dañadas, por crecer en hogares destruidos, por la falta de un padre, una madre, un hermano,.....porque el dolor de la perdida de un ser amado, les cambio la vida para siempre.....y el hogar...su hogar nunca volvio a ser el mismo.

10. Declaración de apoyo de justicia en Nueva Linda

Movimiento Campesino Pro-Justicia Nueva Linda.

11. Protest Survivor's Racist Stereotypes

This is a petition to urge CBS to apologize for the use of degrading stereotypes on the Thursday September 29, 2005 episode of "Survivor Guatemala".

PETITION TO CBS and Mark Burnett, producer of the reality show "Survivor Guatemala"

As citizens against racism in any form, we are deeply offended by the degrading misrepresentations of Indigenous culture that were broadcast on the CBS primetime show, "Survivor Guatemala". The producers of the show demonstrated a shocking lack of intelligence and sensitivity in airing a program that demeaned and stereotyped a race and culture with a long history of cultural and political struggle in South America, the Mayan Indians.

We are forming this petition to put CBS and its sponsors on notice as to how much business they can loose through repeated racial insensitivity, not just from Indigenous Americans, but from all American consumers who possess a social conscience.

Cause for Petition

1.) CBS has an extremely poor track record in terms of presenting Indigenous cultures respectfully and accurately. In 2004, they broadcast a performance by Outkast which mocked Native Americans by presenting non-Natives in day glow green fringed outfits behaving in an offensive and stereotypical manner. While this performance precipitated cries of outrage from Native Americans around the country, CBS has yet to correct its attitude toward Native Americans. CBS has again demonstrated a willingness to sacrifice sanctity for profit and an unacceptable tolerance for racist stereotypes in its programming choices.

2.) On Thursday, September 29, 2005 "Survivor Guatemala" presented a derogatory depiction of ancient Mayan warriors. The producers intentionally provided the contestants with fake feathers, war paint and Mayan style headbands and encouraged them to engage in the mockery of traditional Mayan customs. The Survivor contestants' callous treatment of Mayan cultural and spiritual imagery, and by extension all Indigenous cultural and spiritual imagery, was insensitive, ignorant and offensive. The producers provided the contestants with materials which were clearly intended to impose a North American Plains Indian stereotype on a distinct South American culture and to imply that all Indigenous cultures are inter-changeable. Neither the contestants nor the viewing public, were educated as to the richness and complexity of Mayan culture. The producers of "Survivor Guatemala" failed to honestly research the true spiritual and cultural significance of the objects used to objectify Mayan people and culture. This spectacle amounted to nothing more than a 21st Century Minstrel show.

3.) The producers of the show have been exploiting the Mayan aesthetic throughout the season. They have been actively encouraging the contestants to adopt the harmful stereotype of Mayan Indians as superstitious savages and promoting the racist and culturally uninformed perceptions of anthropologists and missionaries over the interpretations of contemporary Indigenous scholars. The traditions, history and culture of Indigenous Guatemalans have been used throughout the season as a mere gimmick for a trivial entertainment show and exploited for their entertainment value.

4.) There are currently NO redeeming Native American characters on the CBS network nor has there ever been a Native American contestant on "Survivor". Throughout CBS's programming, Native Americans are almost never depicted as contemporary citizens with something valuable to contribute to society.

5.) CBS continues to offer programming where stereotypes dominate in portrayals of Native Americans and to cater to the racist expectations of an uninformed public. They violate their own stated goals regarding diversity in trivializing and distorting Mayan culture for American consumption.

6.) The producers of Survivor have been irresponsible in failing to present the realities of everyday life of contemporary Mayan Indians living in Guatemala. They offered the legitimate political and cultural leaders of this community, no control over their own ethnic identity.

The Harm of Broadcasting Racist Stereotypes.

CBS is a major network with the obligation to use the public airwaves responsibly. Survivor, clearly the most blatantly racist show on network television, has ignored its obligation to respect and reflect the diversity of the public it serves. Instead, the producers have chosen to project negative stereotypes into millions of American homes. The distortion of Indigenous values to conform to the formula for a reality show, the use of campy immunity idols and other imagery and the deliberate objectification of a politically powerless cultural minority is damaging to everyone who views it.

It reinforces existing misconceptions and racial stereotypes in the non-Native population and it imposes additional barriers for Native youth in developing positive identities and in acquiring the self esteem necessary for full participation in American society.

When the producers of Survivor encourage non-Native contestants to appropriate Mayan culture for the sole purpose of winning $1 million dollars, they have every incentive to reproduce derogatory stereotypes for the audience's entertainment and no incentive to put any effort into respectfully learning about and appreciating the diversity and complexity of Indigenous cultures.

This teaches the viewing audience that it is acceptable to rely on stereotypical images and that no effort to discover the richness and inherent value of Indigenous cultures is necessary.

It further reinforces the idea that Native Americans need not be treated as full human beings and that it is acceptable to use them as fodder for play-acting. CBS has hypocritically ignored its stated commitment to promoting diversity and commoditized Mayan heritage in order to sell blockbuster movies, running shoes and automobiles. This corporate racial insensitivity is unacceptable.

Our Demands

We call on CBS and the producers of Survivor Guatemala to take immediate steps to mitigate the harm they have done by airing this episode on national television. We urge CBS to abandon its hypocrisy and follow its own diversity statement.

As broadcasters, CBS should aim to ensure that the national viewing audience is reflected accurately and respectfully in ALL its programming.

1.) The producers of Survivor and anyone responsible for providing the contestants with feathers and war paint should make a thoughtful and genuine apology on the program as soon as possible.

2.) CBS should end all non-Native portrayals of Native American culture. All information about Native culture should be presented only after the producers have sought out the consent, advice and permission from authentic Native American cultural and political leaders.

3.) Any information about Indigenous culture should be presented fairly and accurately in its proper cultural context. More Indigenous voices should be included in CBS's programming. A sincere effort should be made to include contemporary Native playwrights, film-makers, poets and rap artists in special programming designed to inform the audience about the realities of contemporary Indigenous American life as well as the historical foundations of existing racist stereotypes. Native people should be allowed an opportunity to express their own culture in their own voices.

4.) CBS should also make a sincere effort to include positive Native American role models in its programming, to broadcast Native produced programs and to include Native American actors as contestants in reality shows and as actors in its programs.

The Survivor Guatemala challenge was as appropriate as having a "Sambo" challenge for Survivor Africa. The Play-acting of stereotypes of Native American people is inexcusable in primetime American television.

We the undersigned will no longer tolerate cultural symbols used in such an insensitive and garish manner. We believe that the exploitation of cultural beliefs and symbols for entertainment must not go unchallenged.

If the producers of Survivor Guatemala do not make amends for their mockery of Indigenous culture, we will boycott the sponsors of the show. We also call on CBS to take definite steps to stop all its programming that depicts any racial group in a derogatory light.

We demand that CBS adopt and implement plans to air programs which emphasize cultural sensitivity and awareness and to refrain from ever again using racial stereotypes as a source of entertainment.

The undersigned