DİSK Chairman Arzu Çerkezoğlu’s speech in the press release made in Kadıköy on 22 November 2021 for the approval of the ILO 190 “Convention on the Prevention of Violence and Harassment at Work” by the Turkish Government, within the scope of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women on 25 November:
The memory of the Mirabel sisters, who were the pioneers of the struggle against the fascist dictatorship in the Dominican Republic and were killed by the soldiers of the dictator on November 25, 1960, lives on in the struggles of women around the world against inequality, discrimination, exploitation, violence and war.
November 25 is an important milestone in the fight against increasing violence against women, femicide, male violence, and deepening gender inequality. As DISK, we are raising our rebellion on November 25, “International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women”.
The epidemic conditions we are going through have increased the violence, harassment and discrimination that women face at home and in the public sphere. The pandemic has exacerbated gender inequalities that exist around the world. Women suffered more job losses and became poorer. The care of children, the elderly and the sick fell on women.
One of the most common violations of rights, male violence against women continues to be fed by inequalities, discrimination and the power and power relations of the patriarchal system. On top of all this, the misogynistic policies of the political power deepen inequality and discrimination. It leaves women unprotected against male violence. The step taken to withdraw from the Istanbul Convention, which was designed to prevent, prosecute and eliminate violence against women and of which Turkey was the first signatory, is just one of these examples.
It should be known that we women of DISK will never give up on the Istanbul Convention, we will continue to say “Istanbul Convention Keeps Alive”.
Every action and discourse that supports, deepens and normalizes gender inequality continues to pave the way for violence against women. The discussion of the right to alimony, the “reform” debate in the Violence Prevention Law No. 6284 reproduces violence. Judicial decisions that try to make excuses for violence against women continue to support violence. While the woman who killed the man who used violence against her in order to survive was sentenced to years in prison, the policies of impunity for the murderers continue.
Work and workplaces are also not safe for women. In the workplace, women face physical, sexual, psychological violence and harassment. We know that violence and harassment against women in working life is a universal problem. In June 2019, the International Labor Conference put on its agenda the ILO Convention No. 190 for the elimination of all forms of violence, especially gender-based violence in the workplace. The convention entered into force on 25 June 2021.
Convention No. 190 of the ILO is an important roadmap for the fight against violence and harassment, as it comprehensively defines violence as one-sided stalking, threats, verbal ill-treatment and covers everyone.
Therefore, as DISK, we say; ILO 190 “Convention Against Violence and Harassment in the Workplace” should be swiftly ratified by the government and effectively implemented.
For the ratification and effective implementation of the ILO Convention No. 190, as DISK, we are launching a campaign aimed at reaching all the interlocutors of the process, from our workplaces to political parties. As of today, as all DISK women, we will work in our workplaces and factories with cockades expressing this demand. We will read our notices at our workplaces and express our demand loudly. We will hold our press releases, the first of which will be launched in Istanbul on November 22, 2021, in all regions for two weeks.
We will carry out our campaign, workplace by workplace, city by city, and increase our struggle for the ratification of ILO Convention No. 190. We will take care of our labor, our bread and our lives…
As women who stubbornly and hopelessly struggle in every field, our demands are clear and unequivocal:
- Let the Istanbul Convention and Law No. 6284 be implemented effectively!
- Let the ILO Convention No. 190, which entered into force on 25 June 2021, be ratified!
- It is essential to implement public policies for domestic responsibilities that are seen as specific to women. It should be defined as a right that all women and men can benefit from free of charge, especially by opening centers such as nurseries, day care centers, patient and elderly care homes by public institutions and local administrations.
- Parents working in compulsory service and production should be given alternate and equal paid leave, without distinction between public and private.
- Full-time and secure employment opportunities should be created for women, instead of the flexible working forms suggested in the government’s policies to increase women’s employment.
- Special precautions should be taken for women who are most affected by the job and employment losses caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, and who suffer from job and income loss.
APPROVE ILO 190, IMPLEMENT EFFECTIVELY!
LONG LONG WOMEN’S SOLIDARITY!