Jan 102008

Hard as it is to believe, International Women’s Day is less than two months away. As we have done every year since we began, Feminist Peace Network will post information about events and celebrations throughout the world. So please be sure to send us your announcements, statements, etc. so that we can post them.

The Million Women March in the UK that will be held on IWD (March 8) now has a website with information about the march, a statement of purpose and demands. The stated purpose of the March is because,

“Women’s right to live free from violence and/or the fear of violence has not been achieved. Women continue to be attacked and violated in many different ways, in our homes, in our streets, on our public transport, at our places of work. The government, the TV and newspapers do very little to address this issue; instead they often blame women for wearing the wrong clothes or being in the wrong place.

If you think this needs to change, then join us on a public demonstration to show those in power that it’s just not good enough! We need to show our mass dissatisfaction; we need to be strong together and in large numbers. Unity is strength; the voices of many are louder together than a single voice.”

The March is for women only, as the site explains,

“Firstly, because it’s being held on International Women’s Day which is celebrated around the world and provides an opportunity to celebrate and honour the contributions, achievements and courage of women as well as acknowledge and recognise the continuing struggles facing women in our communities and countries. The origins of International Women’s Day can be traced to 8 March 1857 when women garment workers in New York demonstrated for improved working conditions, a ten hour day, and equal rights for women. Since then, the significance of the event has grown and in 1977 the United Nations General Assembly passed
Resolution No. 322/142 inviting each country to proclaim a United Nations Day for Women’s Rights and International Peace.

Secondly, women and children in the UK and elsewhere around the world continue to experience violence every minute of every hour of every day in our homes, on our streets, on our public transport, at our places of work and in countries where there is war. The idea for the Million Women Rise event came from a group of women who dreamed of a strong visible presence of thousands of women marching together, in
unity, to say ‘enough is enough’. There will be women and children on the march who have been assaulted and abused and who may be afraid of men. Out of respect for their safety, we wish the event to be women only.

Thirdly, women have been socially, culturally and economically conditioned to defer to men, to take our lead from men, to behave in ways approved of by men. On this particular day, we want women to come and feel the strength, the exhiliration and power of being with other women, to big ourselves up, to sing, shout and chant at the top of our voices, in all our diversity, to demonstrate however we want because we’re women in the company of other women.”

The organizers do however make excellent suggestions for how men can be supportive. Details of the actual March will be added later.

 January 10, 2008  Posted by on January 10, 2008

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