The “Bartolome Carrasco Briseño” Regional Centre for Human Rights (Barca-DH) was founded by the local church community to promote and defend human rights in Oaxaca State. Its creation was a response to murders and violent acts that were being inflicted with impunity on the state's largely poor, indigenous and marginalised population.
Through its projects, Barca-DH seeks “to contribute to the validity of human rights in Oaxacan communities, so that they may live with justice and dignity”. Barca advises on community proposals and carries out advocacy work and human rights education, provides legal defence and distributes information on the situation in the state.
It also supports communities resisting large-scale mining and other development projects.
Since Barca-DH was established in 1992, its workers have constantly faced surveillance, threats and smear campaigns as well as violent attacks and judicial proceedings against them for their human rights work.
PBI has accompanied Barca-DH since October 2010. We primarily accompany coordinator Minerva Martinez Lazaro and the priests Martin Octavio Garcia Ortiz and Wilfrido Mayren Pelaez (known as Padre Uvi), who are both board members.