For twelve editions, the Fons Català de Cooperació al Desenvolupament has coordinated, together with the Catalan Comissió d’Ajuda al Refugiat, the Human Rights Defender Cities Tour, a promotional initiative in which different social realities are brought together thanks to the activists from different countries and areas that participate in the activities.
In this exchange of experiences there are many Catalan municipalities, which increases vital contrasts. In fact, “Reus is taking a leading role as a city defender, which involves the city council, teachers and young people,” says defender Morena Herrera. Through the Department of Participació, Bon Govern i Serveis Generals, talks have been hosted by two renowned activists, Morena Herrera and Yurany Cuéllar, on topics such as territory, the environment, feminism, the LGTBIQ+ collective and migration.
One of the bases of Herrera’s gathering at the Josep Tapiró Institute was the criticism of the culture of consumerism, whose capitalist ideals conflict with Human Rights. For this reason, the Salvadoran highlights “this proposal for education and rapprochement so that we realize that not everything is so guaranteed.” Therefore, sharing her testimony with the 3rd and 4th ESO students of the educational center makes the most sense of her.
The activist left the meeting satisfied, as both groups were very participatory and reacted positively to the dynamics proposed. Among other exercises, Morena Herrera provided them with comparative data between Catalonia and El Salvador: the number of homicides, the proportion of pregnant girls at school or the percentage of sexual violations among adolescents.
Sorority against the State
In 1990, the Salvadoran woman joined other women and reflected “on what it had meant to be a woman for them” and “they were convinced that they were not going to let others decide for their struggles and their rights,” she explains.
With this, Herrera is mainly dedicated to the defense of the Human Rights of women and highlights her work against the prohibition of abortion in El Salvador and the consequences that this has. The activist herself claims that women with ectopic pregnancy, pregnancies resulting from rape or in case of fetal malformations, should be exceptions to the law that the Salvadoran state refuses to modify.
In El Salvador there is “a manipulation of the ecclesiastical hierarchies and the media,” says Morena Herrera and, for this reason, the defense of Human Rights is decisive as an indispensable part of the feminist struggle and this involves achieving the decriminalization of abortion, as a concrete measure that makes them “land” in everyday life.