A recent community screening
The first lesson many young Indian girls learn at school is their place: Last Place.
During lunchtime girls and boys are frequently separately according to their caste. This division will last for the rest of their lives.
Imagine your daughter’s or sister’s first day of school and their excitement and nervousness at the thought of making new friends and starting an education. By the end of day one she has learned that she, like the family she loves, is worth less than her classmates and, worse, she’s less clean too. She’s the worst of India.
She’s learned and internalized what it means to be an “Untouchable”.
In India, what is taught in the schoolyard permeates throughout Indian society. Lives stunted by discrimination and abuse justified by nothing more than an accident of birth; the caste children happen to be born into. The so-called “Untouchables” -- who call them themselves Dalits – are among India’s most socially marginalized communities. Dalits must withstand being demeaned, stigmatized and mistreated according to the whims and pleasures of their betters.
Video Volunteers has an important campaign to expose the truth about India’s real “untouchables” – the abusers and exploiters who act with near immunity. The corrupt who believe they’re free to mistreat India’s most vulnerable, the Dalits.
YOU’RE INVITED to stand in solidarity with our work with brave individuals from the most discriminated against community in India. You can bear witness – literally – to the abuses these brave Community Correspondents are catching on video.
The Community Correspondents have captured some amazing visuals: A maid working in an upper caste home was paid for her services by standing at a distance and having the family fling food at her like charity into the folds of her sari. When a thirsty youth drank water from a pot meant for other castes, he was abused, assaulted and his hands were nearly chopped off.
Choose not to look the other way. Watch the Untouhability videos.
Untouchability has been illegal since independence, for 67 years, but the government largely fails to enforce this law and this stigma continues to exist in the hearts and minds of people. Cases of abuse and physical assault on Dalits continue with a terrifyingly high frequency in Indian society.
But real change is happening –and the Dalit are leading this change. Video Volunteers’ campaign to enforce the criminalization of this stigma is breaking through – and you can help.
Armed with video cameras, a sense of self-respect and an eye for the opportune moment, many Dalit are fighting back- simply by catching their abusers on tape!
Video Volunteers’ Dalit Community Correspondents are as radical as they are inspirational: Brave, dignified, agents for a more just, accountable and transparent society. They’re taking the risks, gathering the evidence and exposing abuse.
Don’t let their courage and their efforts go to waste. Watch the videos. And if inspired, please support financially Video Volunteers’ innovative and stunningly effective campaign. Help these brave women and men reform society.
Thank you for standing with India’s Dalit Community Correspondents.