The Americas are marked by drastic disparities between countries and vast social inequality within individual societies. Despite this heterogeneity, a shared dynamic has affected many states in recent years: namely, a political and social shift to the right. In the United States, the election of Donald Trump marked a turning point, while across Latin America a slew of left-wing governments of various stripes – upon whom a large number of people, including many in Europe, had pinned their hopes – have either been overthrown (Honduras in 2009, Paraguay in 2011, Brazil in 2016), ousted (Argentina in 2015, Chile in 2017) or are facing severe crises (Venezuela). This lurch to the right is reflected not only in changing governments or a politics of redistribution from the bottom to the top, but also by mounting racism and anti-feminist campaigns as well as growing criminalization of social protests.
Across the region, the Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung collaborates with actors opposing this trend, defending political and social rights and attempting to pave the way for a fundamental socio-ecological transformation. In addition, the Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung’s UN-based activities provide these actors with opportunities to establish global networks, for instance in the context of the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) or in collaboration with the Trade Unions for Energy Democracy (TUED).
Its main fields of activity are:
- Helping organisations that fight structural injustice, facilitating access to United Nations contexts and helping to foster networks
- Supporting partner organizations in defending and realizing global social and political rights
- Supporting exchange between women involved in emancipatory political movements and strengthening feminist movements
- Facilitating transatlantic dialogues that seek to identify alternatives to austerity policies and develop strategies to counter the proliferation of right-wing populism
- Creating space for self-reflexive discussion of various left-wing approaches and strengthening a polyvocal and democratic Left
- Strengthening organisations and communities in their capacity to articulate socio-ecological alternatives to the capitalist, fossil fuel-based model of development, such as the concept of “buen vivir”
The Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung has established five offices across the Americans, which cooperate with partners from almost every country in the region. The New York office coordinates all activities with a focus on the United States and Canada, as well as all global activities related to the United Nations. The office in Mexico City works in Mexico, Cuba, Guatemala, Nicaragua and Costa Rica, while the office in Quito focuses on Ecuador, Venezuela, Colombia and Bolivia and the office in Buenos Aires covers Argentina, Chile and Uruguay. The office in São Paulo is responsible for activities in Brazil and Paraguay.