Personal tools
You are here: Home ›› Blog and Discussion ›› International Women's Day

International Women's Day

Posted by Amy Casso at Mar 07, 2016 08:05 PM |

This International Women’s Day we celebrate and honor those who have come before us and all those who have helped us along the way in the work for justice and dignity for all. The courage and determination to move beyond just surviving to thriving must be a mission on this International Women’s Day.

International Women's Day

Amy Casso speaking at Connecting Women, Gender Violence, Economic Justice and Community-Based Policy Change at Women of Color Network: Economic Policy and Leadership Western Regional Forum

This International Women’s Day we celebrate and honor those who have come before us and all those who have helped us along the way in the work for justice and dignity for all.  The courage and determination to move beyond just surviving to thriving must be a mission on this International Women’s Day. 

Recently I spent an amazing few days with a group of women of color whose generosity, vulnerability, and humility reminded me of what it takes to transform the lives of our communities and families. The Women of Color Network’s Economic Policy and Leadership Western Regional Forum was an opportunity to connect and dialogue with others working for anti-violence, economic, and social justice. This event brought together women of color from various communities, organizations, and sectors to share, kick-start conversations, and develop recommendations for how to better align our collective work.

On a panel focused on movement building and policy change, I spoke of our work through We are BRAVE (Building Reproductive Autonomy and Voices for Equity) at Western States Center to challenge the institutional and structural barriers that produce poverty, isolation, and violence.  How we must affirm that all people should have the social, political, and economic power and resources to make healthy decisions over their bodies, sexuality, gender, and families. And that we seek to create the conditions in Oregon -- and throughout our region -- for all women to have the ability to make healthy decisions based on the full range of reproductive health care options. More importantly, we must elevate vulnerable populations in which these options aren’t even on the menu; this includes transgender folks, undocumented folks, low-income families, and people of color. 

We know that…

●     One in three women experience violence, and every ten minutes an adolescent girl dies as a result of violence.

●     Out of an estimated 35 million people living with HIV, over two million are 10 to 19 years old. [1] 

●     There have been at least 23 trans women and gender nonconforming people murdered in 2015, the majority of whom were black and/or Latina.

●     For women and those who can get pregnant, finances are the driving reason for an abortion. Research shows that for those who are unable to access an abortion,  they are 3x more likely to live in poverty within two years of birth.

●     New research show that Latinas are twice likely to be uninsured compared to white women and immigrant Latinas are 4 times more likely to be uninsured.  [2] 

●     Immigrant women need health coverage, not manufactured policy barriers that continue to bar millions of immigrant women and their families from affordable coverage and care. In 2014, all immigrant women who were not U.S. citizens were 3x more likely to be uninsured.

●     The most significant court case in 36 years (Whole Woman's Health v. Hellerstedt) is before the U. S. Supreme Court.  The implications for communities of color involving this case are clear: it will shape when, how, and where individuals may start a family and challenges our autonomy to make health decisions over our very own reproductive health care.[3] 

We must affirm our lived experience by speaking to the complexity of the lives of women of color; our communities must and will be heard!  The time is now to align our collective and intersectional movement(s) because, as Audre Lorde articulated best, “There is no thing as a single issue struggle because we do not live single issues lives!”


 
 

So on this International Women’s Day let’s be “agent of our own change” as highlighted in both recent and long bygone acts of resistance and expression and power by raising our voices and standing in solidarity as we shout…

I am from a body who deserves a toxic free womb, a safe job, and health care access.

I am from a body we believe we all are BRAVE

I am from a body who can #SayHerName

I am from a body who believes that #BlackLivesMatter

I am from a body who believes that #TransLivesMatter

I am from a body who knows we must #ReclaimRoe AND #RepealHyde

I am from a body that knows we must end deportations #Not1More

I am from a body that shouts #SiSePeude!

I am from a body that…

I am from a body that…

 

Happy International Women’s Day!


[1]http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/international-womens-day-2016-theme-history-everything-you-need-know-1546632

[2]https://www.guttmacher.org/media/inthenews/2016/02/22/NIC-ACA.html

[3]https://www.colorlines.com/articles/supreme-court-heard-arguments-biggest-abortion-case-our-lifetime-and-i-was-building

Facebook Like Box
 
powered by Plone | site by Groundwire Consulting and served with clean energy