Since 2013, we've been working with Mexican authorities to promote the inclusion of animals in disaster risk management. Our focus is to strengthen the Mexican civil defense's capacity to help and manage animals in disaster situations.
We're strengthening national resilience by including improved animal management and welfare in official emergency response and disaster risk management programs, policies and legislation of Civil Defense, and other institutions in Mexico.
Approaching the government
In this project, we had three components: working with the government through events, communication campaigns, and field experience pilots.
Our first approach was through the Secretariat of Foreign Relations. This relationship helped organise several activities that were part of the lobbying strategy.
In 2013, we organised a national seminar about the challenges and opportunities of animal inclusion in disaster management. This was made possible through a partnership with the National Centre for Disaster Prevention (CENAPRED). The Secretariat of Government, the Secretariat of Agriculture, and FAO also participated.
MX30 was a communication campaign developed in 2015, to commemorate the 30th anniversary of Mexico City's 1985 earthquake. It was part of the Mexico project to promote public policy regarding animals in disasters. Find out more about this campaign.
In 2015, an international seminar for the inclusion of animal protection in public policy was held. An interinstitutional group was created as a result of this event, led by the CENAPRED.
Because of this work, the National Atlas of Risks now has a layer of cattle location data. This data comes from the cattle census of the Secretariat of Agriculture. In addition to this, a National Manual for the Detection of Animals in Disasters is being created.
One of the main limitations was the slow pace of work with governments. There was also a change of government during this project. This meant we had to adapt, repeat some work, and build relationships with new authorities.
How can a lobbying experience like this be replicated?
- Interinstitutional coordination: coordination among different institutions allowed the organization of international events and the work group.
- Local work: the work in communities is key to see accomplishments.
- Training: in Mexico, we worked to create training courses with universities and the National School of Civil Defense. We created an online course about the attention of animals in disasters, which anyone can take.