Domestic workers join the Mothers March

Lima, Peru
The domestic workers union SINTTRAHOL marked the Mothers March with a public meeting on Sunday 6 March. About 50 domestic workers and 50 other mothers and their children met in the trade union school of the CGTP, the federation to which SINTTRAHOL is affiliated.

General secretary Leddy Mozombite explained that SINTTRAHOL is affiliated to the Global Women’s Strike (GWS) and the International Network of Domestic Workers because it is a power to be able to organise internationally with other grassroots women. All present agreed with this. She read the message sent from the GWS co-ordination in London.

Gloria Pérez Saavedra, secretary of the CGTP Working Women’s Department, read the GWS demands, highlighting the value of unwaged housework and that ‘every mother is a working mother’.
SINTTRAHOL’s lawyer spoke about Peru’s Domestic Workers Act N. 27986. Three parliamentary candidates (presidential elections are being held this year) spoke about their programmes.

A number of women said that the law is not implemented, neither the 8-hour day nor the the right to education. They asked that the candidates commit themselves to implementing the law, and to the ILO convention with a recommendation for better working conditions for domestic workers, and to an employers’ registry.

A mother from a squatter neighbourhood where mothers have been organising, spoke about the environment, the pollution caused by mutinationals and illhealth. She related that in Argentina a decree has been passed banning restaurants rom adding salt to food as it is a health hasard.

Another mother said she was glad she had joined the union because she had been abused and she didn’t want others to suffer what she had suffered.

The daughter of a domestic worker spoke about her mother’s struggle, and invited other young people to join the trade union and to organise, ‘because this work is for everyone, not just for the leaders.‘

On Tuesday 8 March, about 800 people took part in the CGTP’s event marking the centenary of International Women’s Day. Among them: nurses, women miners, workers in the agricultural, cosmetic and textile industries, dockers, feminist organisations . . . and SINTTRAHOL’s domestic workers. Again Gloria Pérez spoke about caring work, every mother being a working mother and the GWS.