Germany’s Climate Justice and Equality Event Highlights Tawi-tawi Sea Communities

In a groundbreaking forum aimed at addressing climate justice and inequality, the Mannheim City government, in collaboration with the Diversity, Equality and Inclusion Commission, successfully organized a forum centered around the theme of “Leave No One Behind.”  featuring the documentary film ”Sama Dilaut” directed by Christine Ramos. The event, led by Commissioner Sören Landmann, sought to initiate conversations on inclusive policies, programs, and solidarity for indigenous communities disproportionately affected by the adverse impacts of climate change.

Award-winning Sama Dilaut Documentary Film Directed by Christine Ramos

Young activist fighting for climate justice and equality were present at the event to share their insights and experiences. Rhadem Musawah, a  human rights defender from the Philippines who is also the Executive Producer of the film, delivered a moving statement highlighting the need for representation of marginalized communities in the media. Musawah emphasized the importance of breaking stereotypes against indigenous communities and shedding light on the struggles and hopes of those living in coastal regions of Southeast Asia.

Speaking about the oft-ignored communities living in coastal areas, Musawah stated, “Every time we talk about climate change, we always talk about the communities affected on land. We rarely talk about the communities who live in in the coastal regions and in the middle of the sea. That is why representation on TV and other forms of media is important for us to show the physical manifestation of the struggles and hopes of the vulnerable communities, and to help members of the indigenous sea communities feel more accepted and recognized by the mainstream world by highlighting their intersecting marginalization and giving their representation a clearer portrayal.”

Deputy Mayor of the City of Mannheim H.E. Diana Pretzell

The prestigious Kunsthalle Contemporary Art Museum hosted the event as part of their month long exhibition on Climate Change, and the panel discussion was moderated by Anbid Zaman, an LGBT+ Rights activist from Bangladesh. The opening remarks were given by Deputy Mayor Daina Pretzell, who emphasized the need for collective action in combating climate change not just in Germany but also in the Philippines. The sentiment was echoed by Monaliza Mangelen from the Ministry of Finance of Bangsamoro Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao, who stressed the importance of working together to effectively tackle the challenges posed by climate change.

Mannheim Diversity, Equality and Inclusion Commissioner Sören Landmann
Mannheim Diversity, Equality and Inclusion Commissioner Sören Landmann
Rhadem Musawah, Michael Dawila Venning, Darya Sotoodeh and Anbid Zaman

The event provided a platform to discuss the significance of representation and inclusion of marginalized communities, particularly in the face of climate change. By bringing together influential voices such as Rhadem Musawah, Michael Dawila Venning (Executive Director of the Indigenous Communities Learning Center, ICLC), and Climate Activist Darya Sotoodeh from Fridays For Future chapter in Germany, founded by renowned activist Greta Thunberg, the event served as a catalyst for impactful dialogue and the formulation of inclusive policies. Michael Dawila Venning has highlighted the erasure of the Sama-Dilaut’s identity as their traditional livelihood is wiped out due to severe ecological damage and suggested to the audience is to channel their support on empowering our indigenous communities by giving them access to education and safe space where they can have an active participation in all environmental efforts around the world.

Monaliza Mangelen of the Bangsamoro Ministry of Finance BARMM
Monaliza Mangelen of Bangsamoro Ministry of Finance BARMM with Micheal Dawila Venning of ICLC
With the team of Fridays For Future (Germany)

As the forum concluded, attendees left with a renewed sense of awareness on inclusive and affirmative actions towards addressing the impact of climate change. The Mannheim City government, under Commissioner Sören Landmann’s guidance, reinforced its commitment to fostering inclusive policies and programs that protect and uplift marginalized communities affected by climate change. Through collaborative efforts and solidarity, we hoped that tangible solutions will be developed in the near future to ensure that no one is left behind in the face of this global crisis.



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