Skip to content

The Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo join the fight to stop pesticide spraying in Argentina

July 23, 2012

Sofia Gatica, 2012 Goldman Prize winner and co-founder of the Mothers of Ituzaingo, recently participated in a massive march supporting a lawsuit against Monsanto, a massive agrochemical company whose indiscriminate spraying of toxic pesticides has poisoned thousands of Argentinians.

The Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo, an internationally recognized and much loved human rights group, marched in solidarity with the Mothers of Ituzaingo and called for justice for Monsanto’s victims.

Thirteen years ago, Gatica’s infant daughter died from kidney failure, thought to be the result of exposure to pesticides while still in the womb. Shortly after her daughter’s death, Gatica co-founded the Mothers of Ituzaingo to investigate the effect of pesticide spraying on the health of her community at large.

Gatica and the group of mothers began going door to door to conduct the first epidemiological study of the area and discovered the serious effects that pesticide spraying was having on the families in Ituzaingó. Residents reported cancer rates that were 41 times the national average, as well as high rates of neurological and respiratory diseases, birth defects, and infant mortality. Following their findings, Gatica launched a ‘stop spraying campaign’ that she continues to this day.

sofia1

Related Posts

World Oceans Day with Kristal Ambrose


June 8, 2022 – By Jacqueline Kehoe

For Kristal Ambrose, World Oceans Day is every day. A 2020 Goldman Prize winner, Kristal—nicknamed “Kristal Ocean”—rallied her community in the Bahamas to protect the seas, passing one of the most stringent plastic bans to date: the categorical ban of single-use plastics, which account for one-third of all plastic in our oceans. On the frontlines…

Read more

What Environmental Justice Means—and Why it Matters


January 4, 2022

Environmental activism isn’t just about protecting the natural world—it’s also about protecting people. Nowhere is this concept better illustrated than with the environmental justice movement. At its most basic level, environmental justice asserts that environmental issues and social justice are inextricably linked. What is Environmental Justice? Environmental justice is the idea that people of all…

Read more

Prize Winners Today: How Hilton Kelley is Building Community against a Backdrop of Environmental Injustice


October 19, 2021 – By Ellen Lomonico

A Community Leader The day before our interview, environmental justice champion Hilton Kelley (United States, 2011) was celebrating his granddaughter’s birthday—“the big 10.” With powerful, broad shoulders and a thick, white beard, it’s easy to see how the former actor embodies the role of a slightly intimidating but nonetheless jovial grandfather. It’s a responsibility that…

Read more