The surge in populist misogyny threatens to reverse progress towards gender equality and women’s autonomy – from austerity and privatisation of public care services to increasingly precarious and informal work, from a resurgence in patriarchal attitudes to attacks on women’s reproductive and sexual health and rights.
It’s time to organise. And women are rising to the challenge.
In Iceland and France thousands of women walked off their jobs to demand equal pay for work of equal value. In Poland, nearly six million women marched and won a reversal in proposed anti-abortion laws. Across Latin America, the region which gave rise to the Mirabal sisters and a UN International Day, women are demanding an end to gender-based violence. In Russia, women are resisting attempts to decriminalise domestic violence. And in January this year, women, men and children in over 600 cities worldwide stood up against misogyny, racism, bigotry and intolerance and for equality, peace, justice and freedom.
As trade unionists, we stand united around the many challenges that confront us: rising inequality, populism and nationalism, the changing world of work, climate change and the many wars and conflicts that are producing millions of refugees and displaced persons.
We remain firm in our determination to secure high quality, decent work for women and an end to the gender wage gap.
And we remain committed to ending the discrimination and violence that affects women’s daily working lives.
The ITUC General Secretary, Sharan Burrow, says: “There can be no rolling back on women’s rights. We demand a pay rise. We demand investment in the care economy. We demand an ILO Convention to end violence and harassment”.
In organising for our rights, we celebrate our struggles. We celebrate women’s activism in the labour movement and our victories for just wages and working conditions. We take inspiration from our history and our present.
Please send your actions for International Women’s Day to: firstname.lastname@example.org