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Thursday, March 25, 2010
Guerrero's Community Police
This past week in my Issues in Indigenous Agriculture class, we read and discussed indigenous autonomy and I presented a number of examples of what different rural indigenous communities are doing to create and defend their autonomy.
The Community Police of Guerrero was one of the examples I highlighted. This is pretty amazing, and when I say pretty amazing I mean super amazing......52+ indigenous communities in violence-ridden Guerrero (because of age long disputes as well as drug trafficking) have taken their well-being and protection into their own hand in the wake of the Mexican government failing to protect these rural indigenous families. The Community Police is made up of men that give a mandatory year of volunteering as community police officers. Their services include working on community improvement projects, keeping their own pueblos safe as well as keeping other neighboring communities, who solicit their help, free from violence...AT NO COST.
Why free? Because they function under the indigenous cosmovision of communality, meaning that they understand this service as a community need and good, thus being free, mandatory and available to all. Pretty amazing concept huh? Just imagine if our society thought about things like education and healthcare in this same way. Check out how these communities take their safety into their own hands.