The World Federation of Trade Unions, since its foundation, has organized struggles and activities for working women equality, for their awakening and for the improvement of their position in all areas of their social life. Since its foundation in October 1945, it has organized many working women congresses, as well as various activities and militant initiatives.
The demands for women equality, for equal pay for equal work, for pregnancy and childbirth leave, for respect for the women personality, for the protection against prostitution and human trafficking, were first written on the banners and communications of the WFTU.
The class-oriented trade union movement is proud of its struggles and efforts for the emancipation and the social recognition of working women. The WFTU and its affiliated trade unions were the first ones to appoint female cadres to important positions within the life and activity of Trade Unions, with a substantial and not a decorative role. The WFTU was the first to call upon women and men for joint class-oriented struggles against the capitalist exploitation and the aggression of monopolies and of cartels.
Nowadays, the capitalists along with their governments want to eliminate all that we achieved over the last decades with struggles. They are taking away our rights and gains regarding our life, work, pensions, health, education etc. They want to turn again the workers to modern slaves who will work with no rights. The multinationals exploit young workers, young women, young girls in order to increase their profits.The IMF, the World Bank, the World Trade Organization, demand more and more anti-labor measures against young women.
The recent 17th Trade Union Congress of WFTU, held in Durban, South Africa, highlights in its conclusions that working women belong to the group of most affected workers by the crisis, and sets objectives for the abolition of discriminations against women and for the protection of maternity.
Nowadays, the women’s participation in work reaches 49.6%, while the one of men is of 71.6% at world level. Women face a higher unemployment rate, while they make up the majority of workers in informal employment. Both in high and in low income countries, women work less hours in paid work and they undertake at a greater scale (two and a half times more than men) unpaid domestic work, the care of children and the elderly of their family. All over the world, women represent 40% of the labor force and 57% of part-time workers, which in turn translates in a limited
access to social and maternity protection services.
The economic crisis of the last years which deteriorated even more all workers’ life, made working women more exposed to unemployment, underemployment, to the abolition of health benefits and services for them and for their children. Under these circumstances, working women present a lower participation in the organized struggles through their trade unions (40%, CES 2012), which makes their present situation even more difficult.
The wars, waged for the interests of the big monopolies, create millions of refugees, 50% of whom are women and girls who run the risk of violence, prostitution and abuse, during their travel and upon arrival at the destination countries.
Poverty and imperialist wars are being utilized by new-fascist, racist and xenophobic forces, for their immergence in many countries of the planet. The acute problems of working women can be solved through the organized struggle for their rights, through the struggle for the abolition of man by man exploitation. In this context, the WFTU Working Women Congress invites you to actively participate in its works, in the exchange of experience and in the discussion on the problems that women of the working class face worldwide, as well as in the resolution on specific measures that we have to take in the near future in order to address working women problems and to improve their working and life conditions.
Each country can delegate up to two (2) working women
The “Central Nacional de Trabajadores de Panamá” which is the host organization of the World Working Women Congress, will cover the cost of accommodation, meals and local transport for 4 overnights (from 07.03.2018 to 10.03.2018). Arrivals must be scheduled for 7th March 2018 and departures for 11th March 2018.
The cost of air tickets will not be covered neither by the host organization nor by the WFTU.
The delegates who need a visa have to send a scanned copy of their passport at registration.
During the Congress there will be simultaneous interpretation in the languages: Spanish, English, French and Arabic.