Latin America and the Caribbean's Indigenous People and Afro-descendents: Sociodemographic Information
(25 April 2005) Thirteen of 15 Latin American and Caribbean countries have included questions to identify indigenous people and/or Afro-descendents in recent censuses, and there has been a significant increase in the numbers registered over the past two decades.
The living conditions of indigenous people and Afro-descendents are worse than those of their fellow citizens. To fight social and economic inequity, governments have focused social investment on these groups, increasing the need for efficient systems that provide timely, dependable and culturally relevant information. Increasingly, indigenous and Afro-descendents'; organizations also require information. These trends underline the importance of the upcoming international seminar Indigenous Peoples and Afro-descendents of Latin America and the Caribbean: Relevance and Pertinence of Sociodemographic Information for Policies and Programmes, to be held by the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), 27 - 29 April.
Alicia Bárcena, ECLAC Deputy Executive Secretary, and Jaime Andrade Guenchocoy, President of Indigenous Peoples' Fund, which serves Latin America and the Caribbean, will open the seminar on Wednesday 27 April, 9:30 am, at ECLAC headquarters in Santiago, Chile (Av. Dag Hammarskjöld n° 3477, equivalent Vitacura 3030, Celso Furtado Conference Room). This activity has been organized by CELADE, ECLAC's Population Division, and the Indigenous Peoples's; Fund, with support from the Government of France, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), and the Centre Population et Développement (CEPED).
Some 120 specialists from Latin American and Caribbean countries and France will attend the meeting, many of them representing indigenous peoples's; and Afro-descendents'; organizations.
The seminar seeks to update information, respond to growing demand from governments and non-governmental organizations, and analyze the pertinence and relevance of the latest information for designing, evaluating and monitoring public policies from an intercultural perspective.
Eliane Karp de Toledo, wife of the President of Peru and Honorary President of the Indigenous Fund, will participate in an intercultural dialogue on the last day, which will explore issues involving political rights, living conditions and health care, gender, poverty and ageing.