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A "feminist perspective" in fisheries builds on the fact that women of fishing communities take on multidimensional roles that straddle both production and reproduction...

Yemaya

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Issue No:46
  • :0973-1156
  • :August
  • :2014
  • :English

The adoption of the Voluntary Guidelines for Securing Small-scale Fisheries in the Context of Food Security and Poverty Erdication (SSF Guidelines) at the 31st session of the Committee on Fisheries (COFI) in June this year marks an important event in the history of small-scale fisheries. This is a significant, even if long overdue, step forward in recognising the rights of the millions of fishers, especially women, who constitute half of the employment in the sector, and whose work unrecognised and undervalued. The challenge today is to ensure that the SSF Guidelines are adapted to the local context, and States made to enact appropriate legislation and policy changes. The challenge is also to educate and empower women in fisheries on the benefits of the SSF Guidelines, and therefore the need to organise around bringing pressure on States.

The adoption of the Voluntary Guidelines for Securing Small-scale Fisheries in the Context of Food Security and Poverty Erdication (SSF Guidelines) at the 31st session of the Committee on Fisheries (COFI) in June this year marks an important event in the history of small-scale fisheries. This is a significant, even if long overdue, step forward in recognising the rights of the millions of fishers, especially women, who constitute half of the employment in the sector, and whose work unrecognised and undervalued. The challenge today is to ensure that the SSF Guidelines are adapted to the local context, and States made to enact appropriate legislation and policy changes. The challenge is also to educate and empower women in fisheries on the benefits of the SSF Guidelines, and therefore the need to organise around bringing pressure on States.

It is important however to discuss the changing structure of the fisheries, including the small-scale sector. Globally today, the youth of traditional fishing communities are abandoning the employment of their forebears to seek more lucrative jobs elsewhere. The average age of the fishing population in fishing communities is increasing, with older members forced to carry on the fishing and related employment, as the example