COVID-19 In Rural & Marginalized Areas, Episode Ten
In episode nine, we discussed recent developments in our ongoing demand that the government does better in indigenous communities, as well as UNESCO’s Mexico office work on the unique COVID-19 vulnerabilities in these areas while sharing the first of a few interviews with folks on the ground in Hidalgo. In this episode, we share about how the pandemic is affecting Hidalgo’s 2020’s local election season.
MEXICO & HIDALGO & PSYDEH
2020 is a local election year in the Mexican states of Coahuila and Hidalgo. COVID-19 complicates if and how these elections should take place. They’ve already been delayed from June to October, including putting in a place a mechanism through which local municipalities will be governed during this liminal period. Now the October schedule is in serious question due to how local elections must be conducted in person; there is limited to no virtual electioneering possible in these areas. And these rural communities do not have the public health infrastructure to manage virus outbreaks likely during and post-election actions. Rather than summarize the issues at play, we share this strong article on the risks at play, why Hidalgo state government is asking the federal government to step in and postpone, again, the election cycle, a recommendation PSYDEH believes is the right one.
For our part, PSYDEH has actively promoted political and electoral rights, mainly for indigenous communities, and with an emphasis on women since 2016. We have also been selected by the National Electoral Institute (INE) as one of a number of apolitical organizations across the Republic to promote the vote. For the electoral process in Hidalgo in 2020, we have just been selected by the State Electoral Institute of Hidalgo IEEH to strengthen human rights during this atypical electoral process. Our focus is to raise awareness among the general population and the political parties about paying strong attention to health protocols throughout the process. We will be using the Guide for Organizing Elections recently published by the Organization of American States (OAS) to guide us in this work.