Translated by Red Phoenix staff.
Call for the Second Meeting of Latin American and Caribbean Women
Quito, September 28 – 30 2018
Women for the Liberation of the Peoples and for Our Emancipation!
We, the women of Latin America and the Caribbean, since the struggle for independence from colonialism to the present, have actively participated in the historical construction of our countries, in the struggles of our peoples against capitalist dependence and exploitation and against all forms and discrimination, socio-economic, ethnic-cultural, gender, age and for the defense of human rights. We reclaim the legacy of Micaela Bastidas, Juana Azurduy, Manuela Saenz, Policarpa Salabarrieta, Manuela Leon, and hundreds of anonymous women fighters, who in all corners of our region, have given the best of their lives to win the equality of women and we honor those examples with the convening of this Meeting of Latin America and Caribbean Women to which we call on all women to participate.
Already in the twentieth century we followed in the footsteps of the international movement of revolutionary women inspired by Clara Zetkin, who proposed that March 8 be the International Day of Struggle of Working Women. We also have martyrs such as Olga Benario, the Mirabal sisters, in whose homage the International Day of Non-Violence Towards Women is commemorated.
The peoples of Latin America and the Caribbean are united by a common past linked to the anti-colonial and anti-capitalist struggle; we are similar in our social, economic and cultural characteristics. We are also united by the struggle against the oppression by imperialisms and the local ruling sectors. But fundamentally, we are united in the search for a future of true development and profound social change that will lead us to the emancipation and definitive independence of our countries and of we women.
In the last century, the leading role of women in the social, political and economic struggle grew enormously; the actions of the laboring classes and of the different popular sectors of Latin America and the Caribbean have been nourished by the support of that Women’s Movement. This allowed for the establishment of new forms of more democratic and egalitarian organization that allowed for the better exchange of experience and knowledge, as well as the incorporation of thousands of women into the political and social organization. In the various countries the movement of women is demonstrated with very diverse actions that show the commitment of women to the most important demands; thus we have the enormous and rich experience of the National Meetings of Women of Argentina; the struggles of Mexican women against violence against women; in Brazil, Colombia, Peru, Central America, Ecuador, Chile and finally in all countries, there have been massive mobilizations organized against the murder of women, for public and quality work, education and health, in defense of the environment, against government corruption, etc.
We women are the ones most punished by this unjust and repressive system. We fight against exploitation and oppression. We fight against gender violence, for sex education to decide on contraceptives to avoid abortion and legal abortion to avoid death. To put an end to the national and international networks that traffic in persons and enslave women, children and adolescents. We continue to raise the historical banners of the women’s movement, demanding equal pay for equal work. With the sharpening of the international economic crisis that the governments of our countries are placing on our backs, we struggle against the surrender of the sovereignty of our countries, the handover of our resources, the labor exploitation, hunger, unemployment, for quality education and health of our peoples. We face discrimination, racism and xenophobia and we struggle for the recognition of the rights of indigenous and black peoples, of the original nations and cultures.
For these reasons and because we support the integration of America, we call on women workers, peasants, young women, indigenous and black women, housewives, professionals, teachers, residents of the poplar neighborhoods, the self-employed and unemployed women, intellectuals, artists, people of cultural and gender diversity, to meet and participate in the Second Meeting of Latin American and Caribbean Women so that we can exchange democratically and on a level and equal footing our experiences of struggle in the daily battles that we wage for the winning and defense of our rights.
We await you with open arms here in the middle of the world, in this land that is the cradle of liberating ideals, with the warmth of this generous land and its people to strengthen the bonds of unity of the women’s movement of this region of America; in order to advance safely for the winning of our rights and in the building of a world of full freedom and equality for all humanity.