Three decades of neo-liberalism plunged the world into deeper crises. The policies of liberalization, deregulation, privatization and denationalization have accelerated the reconcentration of wealth in the hands of the global and national elites away from the working class people.
The core of neo-liberal attack on the working class is to nail down wages through contractualization, wage rationalization and other anti-labor schemes. Women’s labor became even more invisible, as unpaid work and work outside the formal economy further removed women’s work beyond any legal regulation and without social protection.
Imperialist globalization’s intensified corporate land grabbing and reconcentration that proceeded to convert land to monocrop plantations. Women and their families as primary tillers and food producers were displaced wholesale. Water, fuel and food sources for their basic needs were depleted and polluted with agro-chemicals and mine tailings. Mining concessions and explorations displaced indigenous communities, endangering indigenous cultures and traditional way of life.
Imperialist plunder has brought massive destruction of the environment leading to devastation of natural sources of food, livelihood, dwellings and loss of lives aggravated in times of natural disaster. The late and inadequate response of governments has increased the vulnerabilities of the women and children to turn to prostitution and human trafficking.
Militarism in the name of imperialist interests has given rise to increase in violence against women and children and the escalation of organized prostitution and trafficking. Communities suffer massive human rights abuses and infringement of their civil liberties. Impunity has become so entrenched in the system of justice.
The US has arrogated upon itself the powers of a global police for the longest time and has now included its homeland as a theater of war against its own citizens. In the guise of its war against terrorism, it has fanned the rise of militarism, ethnic strife, proxy wars and fundamentalism to justify its interventionist wars and to feed its monstrous military-industrial complex.
The US pivot to Asia re-establishes US military and naval basing in the Asia Pacific region, in violation of constitutional prohibitions in host countries against foreign basing. Puppet regimes are emboldened by US client relations to crush liberal democratic rights and heighten political repression.
Imperialist controlled international forums and even the US government have failed to veil the grim impacts of exploitation, repression, plunder and militarism.
Laws adopted as a result of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for action have brought little relief, if at all, to women in the face of the individualization of the labor contract in the neoliberal economy. Pious praises heaped by imperialist-led global institution on “women empowerment” have masked wholesale repression that includes severely constricted rights to collective bargaining and free association among many other labor rights.
As austerity measures started in the 1990s failed to alleviate poverty, the IMF-WB rolled out a purportedly novel approach of conditional cash transfers (CCT) to impoverished women and their families. Like the failed Grameen microcredit experiments, CCT’s have proven to be effective social control instruments for exploring recipient families, and the massive amounts involved easily turned into new venues for government graft and corruption.
Imperialist pacifist campaigns have failed to obliterate the militant struggles of women nor demonize the national liberation struggles they have joined together with the toiling masses.
The women’s mass movement has strengthened in the face of extreme adversities. Hence, we have to affirm the following:
- Importance of strengthening the anti-imperialist women’s movement deeply rooted in grassroots women’s movements;
- Role of women in leading various movements in defending their countries, communities, and their movements against all forms of neo-liberal and imperialist attacks;
- Significance of heightening and linking the struggles of women from all over the world to fight the intensified imperialist exploitation and in creating a new world order where women can live freely from violence and are treated as human beings and not sex objects or commodities.
After more than thirty years of imperialist globalization, the international women’s movement finds itself facing a greater challenge — the heightened of misery of women’s lives and the erosion of gains of women’s movements.
The various forms and levels of struggles being waged by women in their respective home fronts against imperialist globalization shall serve as the lifeblood of a revitalized, reinvigorated international working women’s movement fighting for the genuine emancipation of women.
ILPS Women’s Commission thus affirms to:
- Expose and fight any and all forms of imperialist exploitation such as the TPPA and other economic agreements and policies;
- Expose and oppose imperialist ploys and machinations to further derail the women’s movement from pursuing the path of women’s liberation and emancipation;
- Actively support women’s actions all over the world to defend their communities and people, defend and protect the environment from further degradation by exploitative industries, assert their rights and participate in building new societies and a new political and economic system;
- Expand and activate the participation of women in the international anti-imperialist movement by enjoining more women’s organizations to become members of ILPS.
In particular, we resolve to do the following in the next three years:
- Hold study conferences on significant and timely women’s issues on the regional and international level;
- Hold an international women’s conference on organizing strategies and anti-imperialist women’s movement building;
- Re-claim March 8 International Toiling Women’s Day against imperialism;
- Hold coordinated actions on women red letter days such as November 25 (IDEVAW), November 29 (International Women’s Human Rights Defenders’ Day), December 12 (Global Day of Action for Climate…)
- Actively put forward or propose actions for ILPS to support women’s campaign and struggles with international significance in each country or region;
- Strengthen the ILPS Women’s Commission by identifying core members of the secretariat;
- Hold regular face to face or online meetings and/or consultations among ILPS Women’s Commission members; and
- Issue regular commission online updates that will contain campaigns, activities, and actions of women in different countries and regions.