When women intervene, something more than class relation appears… (Feminized Labor unrest in Kenya, Indonesia, Pakistan, Zambia)
22.03.2011 § Leave a comment
“A struggle of women, even with ordinary demands which
are themselves not particularly “feminine” (wages, working
conditions, layoffs…) is never just a struggle or a strike, but
always a struggle or a strike by women. In fact, the contradiction
between men and women is never absent, whether it is
addressed as such or just present in the themes. All women’s
movements bring to the table (or just make apparent) the
question of the separation of the private and public spheres
(to challenge their separation is to challenge their very existence,
which is nothing if not separate) constituting the
wage relation; the question of subsistence, of solidarity and
of unproductive-reproductive labor, that is to say, the organization
of life despite exchange; the question of sexuality (an
ostensible public appearance is always attached to a deviant
sexuality); and finally the pleasure of being together not only
as female workers or employees, but as women….
In their own struggles or in that of male workers, when women
intervene, even in the direct expression of ordinary demands,
a different dimension, something other than the reflexive
game between the classes, always appears.”
— TC: “Comrades, But Women”
Nurses and midwives are staging-go slows and inciting strikes in Kenya and Indonesia; women faced with the paticular oppressions of feminized labor in Pakistan and Zambia are pissed and rising up:
The 180 nurses at the hospital staged the go-slow on 16 March to protest at being overworked and the withholding of their uniform and other allowances by the hospital’s management
Eight nurses and midwives have been arrested in Jayapura for their
involvement in a strike that resulting in a halt to services at the
general hospital in Jayapura. They face charges of inciting their
colleagues to take part in a strike.
Sindh Labour Minister Ameer Nawab said home-based workers, an overwhelming majority of whom were women, were not only paid less but they also did not have any job security. Besides, since they were not considered workers in the legal term, they could not get registered with various social security schemes of the government.
“Many women have been flocking our office with numerous complaints of alleged poor condition of services. Many have complained that they were working under harsh condition of services and in some case they were dismissed without any benefits despite the years they have served,” she said.
Mrs Tonga appealed to the ministry of Labour and Social Security to intervene in the matter.
And Chipata Muslim Association of Zambia vice chairperson Aiyub Mogra said his association had not received such complaints from the maids.
“Maids have never complained of their alleged poor conditions of service to the association. We are not aware of complaints,” he said