Further aggravating gender-based inequality and oppression are the denial of reproductive and sexual rights of women, violence against women, including against lesbian, bisexual and transgender sisters. One of the latest of these killings was that of Jennifer Laude by a US soldier. The perpetrator, while convicted, was given a sentence lower than murder and remains virtually in US custody with their own men guarding him in Camp Aguinaldo, instead of in the New Bilibid Prison.
With stepped-up militarism resulting from the PNoy government’s signing of the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) with the United States, an agreement which serves as the latter’s instrument for its so-called Asia-Pacific pivot, prostitution and other forms of violence against women are expected to rise. One of the greatest costs of this surrender of sovereignty is the surrender of women’s safety and that of the environment.
As Filipino women march on with their struggles to overcome inequality, exploitation, marginalization, will we find allies in the present and future leaders of our country? Will the coming elections bring solutions to our current conditions?
Women have learned for a long time now that we have to fight for and persistently defend our bodies, our land, our gains in struggle. We know that we will not get what we need and want on a silver platter. We have to push for the women’s agenda before our presidential, legislative, and local candidates, and refuse to be sidelined. We will march and fight for a more economically and politically secure life and future for ourselves and our children.
Women, let us defend our bodies, our lives, our land and territories from corporatism, patriarchy and militarism!
Action against Violence and Exploitation, Inc. (ACTVE) •
Bagong Kamalayan • Buklod • CATW-AP • Center for Migrant Advocacy (CMA) •
Focus on the Global South • Foundation for Media Alternatives (FMA) •
Freedom from Debt Coalition – Women’s Committee • KAISA-KA • KAMP
• LILAK (Purple Action for Indigenous Women’s Rights) • Partido Lakas ng Masa (PLM)
• Partido ng Manggagawa • PAHRA • Piglas Kababaihan •
Pambansang Koalisyon ng Kababaihan sa Kanayunan (PKKK) •
SARILAYA • SENTRO - Women • Stop the War Coalition • Transform Asia • WomanHealth Phils. •
Women’s Legal and Human Rights Bureau (WLB) • Women’s Crisis Center •
Youth and Students Advancing Gender Equality (YSAGE) •
World March of Women – Pilipinas • numerous courageous individuals