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by Vida del Sol (reposted by andy) Saturday, Apr. 30, 2005 at 8:32 PM

In response to a call from the Women’s Anti-Imperialist League for working women to participate in the 2005 commemoration of International Labor Day, more than a dozen organizations endorsed the contingent of working women for the May Day rally in New York City.


In response to a call from the Women’s Anti-Imperialist League for working women to participate in the 2005 commemoration of International Labor Day, more than a dozen organizations endorsed the contingent of working women for the May Day rally in New York City. The contingent will gather by noon at Washington Square, at the site of a 1911 fire which killed over a hundred women workers locked in for nightwork at a garments factory. After a short program, the contingent will then march to Union Square to join the main workers rally in the heart of New York City.

Spearheaded by the Task Force on Working Women created by GABRIELA Network NY/NJ and Damayan Migrant Workers Association, the distinct and unique participation of working women in the May Day rally intends to call attention to the impact of globalization on the world’s womankind.

“Organizing women workers on the basis of both gender and class serves to emphasize the double burden women bear under capitalist patriarchy,” said WAIL spokesperson, Vida del Sol. “Organizing women on the basis of class, gender and ethnicity emphasizes the triple burden imposed upon poor women of color by imperialist globalization.”

Initial endorsers and participants are: Andolan Organizing South Asian Workers; CAAAV Organizing Asian Communities; Casa Ache Atabex; Domestic Workers United; DRUM; Garment Solidarity Center; Haitian Women for Haitian Refugees; Radical Women; Representing Activism, Education and Communities Through Hiphop (REACH); Restaurant Opportunities Center of NY, Workers Awaaz and Women’s International League of Peace and Freedom.

Organizations of taxi drivers, African-American and Latino working women, as well as various women’s organizations are expected to swell the ranks of the working women’s contingent.

Aside from GABRIELA Network NY/NJ and Damayan Migrant Workers Association, groups organized around Philippine-American and Philippine issues endorsing the contingent are the Ugnayan ng mga Anak ng Bayan (Linking the Children of the Motherland), Filipino American Human Services, Inc., Kalusugan Coalition and Network in Solidarity with the People of the Philippines.

WAIL Central issued the following statement for the 2005 International Labor Day:

Persevere in the Anti-Imperialist Struggle! Advance the Working Women’s Liberation Movement!

Because the world capitalist system visits upon the majority of the world’s women the most unconscionable exploitation and dispossession, strengthening local patriarchies to ensure that working women remain the world’s largest reserve of cheap labor for multinational corporations;

Because the world capitalist system perceives and treats women of all races, nationalities and ethnicities simply in terms of their roles in capitalism’s systems of production and reproduction, reducing distinctions to the great divide between the propertied and the propertyless, such that the social status of tribes, ethnicities and races often parallels their economic status;

Because the very origin of private property is linked to the oppression and exploitation of women, hence women’s struggles for complete emancipation and equality have been frustrated, time and again, by structures of class and property;

Because women comprise 40% of the world’s labor; 60% of those who earn less than $1 a day; 75% of the world’s 876million “illiterates,” and because working women earn less than 10% of the world’s income, though they produce fully half of the world’s supply;

Because women comprise 90% of the labor in the maquiladoras of Central America and Mexico, majority of the labor at the Export Processing Zones and call centers of Asia; of the sweatshops of Saipan and the sweatshops of the electronic and garment industries of the ghettoes of the US, helping generate an estimated 60% of the profits of imperialist globalization;

Because poor and propertyless women comprise 90% of the commodity of the sex trade; and nearly 70% of those exported and traded through the international labor market;

Because where people resist the onslaughts of world capitalism, wars of aggression, invasion and occupation are unleashed upon them by imperialism, especially as led by the United States; with the consequence that 70% of war’s collateral damage is borne by women and children, and nearly all of war’s enduring damage in terms of constriction of public space for women, erosion of their rights and freedoms, and the creation of breeding grounds for religious fundamentalism often directed against women’s rights and freedoms; and of breeding grounds for increased violence against women and sex trafficking…

We affirm that:

The struggle of working women against class exploitation is central to the women’s liberation movement; The struggle against gender oppression, racial discrimination and bias against sexual orientation is a component of the women’s liberation movement; The struggle for women’s democratic and reproductive rights and the overall struggle against various forms of patriarchies, serve and enhance the working women’s militant struggle against class exploitation, and vice-versa; The women’s struggle for liberation is integral to the struggle against imperialism and vice-versa; a dialectical relationship exists between the women’s liberation movement and the anti-imperialist movement.

Therefore, we call on working women and their allies to:

Oppose imperialism, expose its anti-woman and anti-worker character!

Strengthen and expand the women’s anti-imperialist front!

Stand in solidarity with all people’s movement against imperialism and for national liberation!

Stand in solidarity with the working women of the world toward class emancipation, gender liberation and racial equality!


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