Indigenous Bioethics Network founded in Mexico
The First American University of Sovereign Nations (AUSN) Conference on Bioethics, Public Health and Peace for Indigenous Peoples was held all day on Saturday, 28 June 2014, at the UNAM University Cultural Center in Tlatelolco, Mexico City, Mexico. It was an official post-Congress side event of the 12th World Congress of Bioethics, and joined by 50 persons from around the world. The speakers came from many different nations, and stimulated discussion for all the participants to participate.
The First American University of Sovereign Nations (AUSN) Conference on Bioethics, Public Health and Peace for Indigenous Peoples Bioethics is present in every community of the world in the relationships between people, plants and animals and nature. Indigenous Peoples are starting to rediscover their identities and philosophies. One part of this Conference was to examine the articulation of different ethical world views of nature, life and ethics, a second was how these are being applied to bioethical decision-making. A third part was to explore how these have, and could further contribute to, lessening the devastating public health divides inside and between many countries. A detailed report from the conference is available on http://au-sn.com/conferences/past-conferences/ There is a need to preserve the culture, traditions, health, welfare, and rights of Indigenous Populations throughout the globe. Indeed, health and public health are undisputedly foundational pillars of any sustainable community, society or nation and serve as positive attributes of peace. Finally we will explored the links between public health and peace for Indigenous Peoples. A yahoo network on bioethics and indigenous people was established (please email to firstname.lastname@example.org), and further meetings of the network will be held in 2015.
AUSN appreciates Professor Marcela Martha Rodriguez Alanis, Director, Instituto de Investigaciones en Bioética (IIB), Monterrey, Mexico, who is also an AUSN Professor. AUSN and IIB have signed a MOU to cooperate together, including in linking their Masters in Bioethics programmes, and joint training courses.
Classes are being held every Friday and Saturday at AUSN, with stimulating discussion from all present, students, faculty, and visiting colleagues and researchers. Small size residential classes provide a chance for all to develop skills to articulate their ideas.
Prof. Ryo Takahashi making a presentation to AUSN at YPA9 In the photograph you can see a picture of Prof. Ryo Takahashi making a presentation to AUSN at YPA9. His mother is a direct descendent of an Empress of Japan, and the scroll pictures the spiritual gods of Japan and the two thousand year Imperial family tree of Japan. We are very grateful to receive such a special gift, which goes amongst other gifts and souvenirs people have given to over time. We hope that some of these objects will be a source of interest and reflection. AUSN Clinical Professor of Psychology, Ability Studies and Disaster Recovery, Dr. Raquel Smith, holds the scroll.
Ninth Youth Peace Ambassador (YPA9) Training Workshop
Ninth Youth Peace Ambassador (YPA9) Training Workshop The last week of August was the culmination of a month seeing visitors coming to AUSN, with guest lectures and visits. With the arrival of around 50 young people to join the Ninth International Youth Peace Ambassador (YPA) training workshop, at AUSN, we had people from many countries join to share their ideas.
This is the first time YPA has been held in the Americas. Having a conference for one full week was an energy sapping experience, that people enjoyed and we were very fortunate to have several occasions to meet with local Native American organizations.
AUSN deeply appreciated the hospitality of the Salt River Young Persons Council and SRPMIC Youth Services who hosted a welcome dinner, and a chance for learning games, songs, dance and ideology together, over food. The first day started with a joint session at the Salt River High School, to learn about the issues facing the high school students. Council member Tom Largo explained about the work of the Council to the delegates, many who had not understood the concept of a sovereign nation inside another country, so this was really helpful. In the evening we were so grateful for the active participation of many members of the community. Throughout the conference we had many presentations and development of action plans (see http://www.eubios.info/youth_peace_ambassadors_international/ypa9_-_arizona_usa).
Navajo Nation, Tonalea Chapter On another day the conference went to visit the Grand Canyon, which is awe-inspiring as a natural wonder of the planet. Following that we could visit the Navajo nation, Tonalea chapter. The local community hosted us for a meal and shared in dancing and historical stories, and textiles, hoop dancing, and other insights into the rich culture. One of the most interesting discussions was from a medicine man on the traditions, and social changes as he reflected on social, health and community issues. The delegates were also shocked to see some of the uranium mine tailings and coal mining, quite sensitive issues with public heath implications. There were several newspaper reports from the conference visits which are linked on http://au-sn.com/conferences/past-conferences/).
San Carlos Apache Internment Camp The YPA9 group also had the privilege to be able to pay respects to the ancestors and victims of the San Carlos Apache internment camp, and the photograph shows part of the memorial that was explained by Council member Wendsler Nosie, Jr.
Globally we need to be very concerned for future generations to be able to live safely without fear of environmental contamination, as well as to be free of human rights violations that have infringed the right for peace that all people need in order to flourish. There’s a need for future research work to provide evidence-based policy recommendations for the future that reflect the values of the people.