“Free and Public Health for Women and Girls”
16 – 22 March 2019
Church Center for the United Nations 2nd floor New York
Greetings dear colleagues, I send fraternal greetings from WFTU, representing Working Women all over the continents. Bringing a message of support to all working women who struggle for “Free and Public Health For Women and Girls”, which is also today’s topic.
As working women and women in particular, daily we are faced with challenges that emanate from the exploitation system we live in. A system that generates discrimination against women and young girls. Discrimination of women and girls is effectively used by reactionary theories to further exploit women and children. Such tendencies are deemed destructive for working women interests, as they put aside working women’s historical achievements of their struggles for equality in society, at work and in life; this is because capitalism can’t resolve women problems, capitalism neither can, nor wants to liberate women from the triple exploitation they suffer from: class, gender and, in some cases, race exploitation.
Over the years, WFTU has firmly promoted the participation of women as equal partners with men in achieving equality, dignified work, peace, security, and full respect for human rights. The empowerment of women continues to be a central feature of our federation to address social, economic and political challenges across the globe.
Colleagues, we need to acknowledge soldier together to fight discrimination and abuse of women and children in all continents. Capitalist ideology acts to crush any attempts of women to politicize and form resistance, to be actively involved in the daily struggle for contemporary labour rights, true equality, free and public health for all.
Especially today, in many countries where anti-people reforms are being promoted by employers and anti-labour governments, where privatizations and continuous depreciation of public health care system are implemented, the need for the women unionist movement to actively engage in the struggle is even greater.
The working women claims for an effective health care system, free and public for all, with a special focus on women’s special needs, must be at the forefront of our struggles across the world. We also have to address the issues of occupational safety, focused on female workers, with a special care for hygiene and prevention for women.
The World Federation of Trade Unions, since its foundation, has been firmly struggling for working women’s equality and for the improvement of their position in all areas of their social life. For one more year, we join our voice with the working women and support their demands:
“-Reclaim our rights! Hit back the capitalist onslaught! Defeat fascist forces!
– Decent work and dignity at work
– Equal pay for equal work
– Maternity benefit to all
– Social benefit to all
– Health and safety at the work places!
Calling upon all leaders both men & women to take upon themselves to always be revolutionary and fight the scourge of abuse of women and children. As a collective, we further need to champion campaigns in , advocating and ending:
- Sexual harassment/misconduct;
- Ending child marriage’;
- Gender wage parity
- Access to quality education
- Equal employment opportunities
- Reproductive health rights
- Maternal Health
- Gender based violence
- Child marriage
- Female genital mutilation
- Water sanitation
- Gender equality
WFTU further calls upon each person to respect Women & Children’s rights as they are HUMAN RIGHTS
Grace Mathapelo Khanye