Monday, 26 March 2012

Indigenous Peoples are consumers too

The Peruvian Institute for the Defense of Competition and Intellectual Property (INDECOPI) launches the opening of its new headquarters in the region of Cusco. Yet, since 1995, INDECOPI Cusco has provided to its citizens various consumers services.

This time and celebrating ‘consumer’s week’ it has published and made available the 'consumer Decalogue in Quechua', designed to promote and defend the rights of these indigenous peoples.

It is claimed that this step aims to promote and disseminate the top ten consumer rights, among people who speak Quechua, thus creating a healthy culture of respect for this people. INDECOPI informs that through this Decalogue it will guide and educate about a million Quechua-speakers of different communities living in the Cusco region, so that in addition to know and defend their rights, they will have access to satisfactory products and services.

Peru ratified ILO Convention 169 back in 1994 and while I can see this Decalogue as a way to integrate more the communities, I indeed believe that it is a good application of Article 4 – guaranteeing enjoyment of the general rights of citizenship without discrimination.

Ecuador, Chile, Colombia and Argentina have also ratified the Convention and have Quechua-speakers communities, but will they follow this initiative?

Another question that I might query is that INDECOPI Cusco claims that in 2011, attended 1,157 claims, having been solved 95% of them through the process of conciliation – very good indeed. But, will this initiative of bringing the Decalogue in Quechua also be extended to filing claims in Quechua? That would be the cherry on top of the cake.

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