Participation of Indigenous peoples

Consulting Indigenous peoples and promoting their participation in debates over the issues that affect them is a fundamental responsibility. So it is the basis for any design and implementation of public policies aimed at helping Indigenous people. The design and implementation of media is no exception.

Moreover, regulations to ensure participation have to be successful in two key areas: (a) participation in the design of programs, policies and policy regulation; and (b) participation in the design, implementation and evaluation of projects implemented in their communities.

With respect to the latter, some countries have implemented permanent consultation and participation bodies, as is the case of the Te Pini Kökiri (Maori Ministry of Development). Te Pini Kökiri is the main consulting body representing the Maori people to the New Zealand government, as well as an advisor to the government on all public policy issues related to the Maori people.

Nevertheless, many countries, and especially on the African continent, have more work to do in enacting legislation and recognizing the existence of Indigenous peoples in their territories. Kenya´s government has taken this step in recent years.

There are other notable regulations, such as those in Argentina, which establish the participation of an Indigenous representative in the Federal Council of Audiovisual Communication, which is the advisory, consulting and supervisory body of the Federal Audiovisual Communication Services Authority.

Finally, one of the most important elements is to incorporate community participation into the general practice of communications development in Indigenous communities throughout all phases of projects. These issues will be addressed in the relevant section of this toolkit.