LALIT’s central committee read and adopted the proposed Women’s Common Platform that the Muvman Liberasyon Fam had prepared in an open meeting and is presenting to all major political parties. The Platform will thus become part of our party’s Electoral Program, which is under preparation.
Here is the Document sent to LALIT by the Muvman Liberasyon Fam:
On the occasion of International Women’s Day and also at the beginning of an election year, women from different perspectives gathered at the invitation of the Muvman Liberasyon Fam on 10 March 2019 at Grand River North West. The meeting was held in order to thrash out a Common Platform for Women’s Emancipation that can be adopted/adapted by other women groups, and that will be presented to all political parties so that they include these concerns in their respective Electoral Programs from right now:
1. Housing for every woman!
- women suffer domestic violence in part because we have nowhere to go if we abandon a violent partner, and violent partners know this,
- in the past, the Central Housing Authority rented affordable “lakaz vev” to single mothers until the agency was closed down in 1992 after which women have suffered untold misery from the lack of housing as a right,
- and given that women suffer because of living in “heirs’ housing” that grown-up children, often now with children of their own, later refuse to move out of because it is “their own” by future inheritance, and that this engenders endemic violence, and a significant number of murders,
and given that:
- sugar estate land, Mauritius main agricultural land, is being squandered on golf courses for rich adults to play on and is being sold off to millionaires, and this with immense Government subsidy,
that therefore your Party
– undertakes that it is the State’s responsibility for all single mothers and all families to be assured housing they can afford, including a rental option, and that you will ensure this transition from the present system to one more like the ex-CHA, and use land that is being wasted on golf courses and real estate speculation for housing and social amenities that give respect to all the people.
2. Employment Assured for Every Woman
Given that, in order to be independent and to be able to pay for housing, food and other necessities, women need jobs that are permanent and pay that is enough to live on,
Given that the country’s agricultural land must be used for creating the base for agriculture and industries for preserving and processing food,
that your Party thus
– agrees that it is the State’s responsibility for all women (and all men too) to have permanent jobs, or if not, a guaranteed Social Security income as of right and not with patronizing social contracts,
– agrees that the land of the country be used, as well as for housing, for job creation,
– accepts that the State must be responsible, in the final analysis, for job creation in production.
– will ensure that food production includes value added food preserving and processing for export so there are jobs for women in research, factories, marketing and transportation.
3. The Land Question and Women
Given that land is the basis for agriculture, industry, job-creation, production, food security and housing for all, it is something that cannot be controlled privately in the interests of personal profit, and given that until recently, it was indeed rightfully illegal for sugar estate bosses to use their land as real estate, whether to parcel it, to sell it in bits, to build villas on it, and given that it was rightfully illegal for non-Mauritians to buy land,
that your Party undertakes
– to ensure that non-viable sugar and cane production is gradually phased out.
– to ensure that agricultural land is not sold off,
– that land is used to create employment for women and for all, to ensure food security for all which is a women’s issue, and to ensure land for housing.
4. Peace, a Women’s Cause
- women, in daily life throughout history, have been and still are responsible for peace,
- the ICJ has statuted that Chagos must be de-colonized,
- the Pelindaba Treaty outlaws nuclear arms in Africa, and Diego Garcia is in Chagos, Chagos is now clearly part of Mauritius, and Mauritius is in Africa,
- the UN calls for an end to Israeli colonization of Palestine,
that your Party, inter alia,
– calls for a date at which the USA-UK military base on Diego Garcia be closed down.
– calls on Israel and the USA to stop the occupation of Palestine.
5. No to Repression – it only makes more Problems for Women
- problems women suffer are often aggravated by State repression,
that your Party
– undertakes to decriminalize abortion i.e. no woman ever in future be charged for undergoing an abortion,
– undertakes that Social Security will pay child support and never again resort to forcing men to look after their children by locking them up, as this provokes more male violence,
– promises not to increase maximum prison sentences for rape, as this causes rapists to murder the only witness i.e. the victim,
– undertakes to decriminalize homosexuality between consenting men of age, and recognize marriage between consenting adults,
– undertakes to set up a Commission of Enquiry into the death of Kaya and others found dead in custody, as a move to stop police violence and to expose the nature of the uprising against the police that followed Kaya’s death.
6. Women’s Health
- women’s health care is important to women and is often women’s responsibility,
Your Party will
– assure best practices as of right in hospitals and dispensaries, in respect to:
- contraception services, with staff trained to be sensitive to young girls being sexually active.
- abortion services in hospitals.
- best practices for diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer, and uterine cancers.
7. Education for freedom and more space for children
- violence in children is not their fault, and not necessarily the fault of their parents or teachers, but is a societal phenomenon that needs to be addressed at root cause,
your Party thus
– recognizes that, in this context, all parents need to be offered a job with regular pay, and housing they can afford, and commits to embarking upon taking this responsibility,
– will ensure that subjects are taught in the mother-tongue, so children understand them and learn to think about the subject naturally instead of learning off-by-heart, and so as to ensure mother-tongue based multi-lingual education, and will organize consciousness-raising on this amongst parents,
– will begin the process of ensuring that all children have a safe pathway to walk to school by themselves i.e. wide enough sidewalks on all roads, with mothers/teachers to assist at crossings, so that children are free,
– will ensure that children have grounds at every street corner to play on,
– will introduce proper sex education be introduced in schools, so that children can protect themselves from predators and prepare for a healthy sex life later on in life,
– will ensure that education includes subjects that help children to think, to analyse and to develop critical and creative capacities freely – like evolutionary biology and proper analysis of society in terms of history of the different classes and of the history of those societal values that care for all people – and that after school hours, there will be games, chess, bridge, art, music, dance groups, under supervision in all school premises, during which socialization also takes place,
– undertakes to help children, teachers and parents understand and use machines, technology and the internet in the interests of society, and not be used by these.
8. Women, children and men living with disabilities
Given that many women live with disabilities, and/or are responsible for the care of those in their household who live with disabilities,
that your Party
– will ensure full rights to everyone – to work, to housing, to food security and to access to all public facilities.
9. Women are not Objects to be Looked At, or Abused
Given the stereotyping of women, and also of men,
that your Party
– will do all in its power to treat men and women equally, within your Party and in all policies you adopt,
– will expose and sanction men in your Party or Alliance when they act as predators, bullies or sexual blackmailers, by means such as denunciation, suspension and expulsion.
10. Technology must be Used for the General Good
that most cyber-executives, who know the dangers, refuse to give their own children the electronic gadgets that the profit-making Companies they work for sell to us all, and that many even send their children to expensive schools where computers and devices are banned,
and that the social media Companies have created dangers they could and should have predicted, in order to make more money from more “clicks” thus more advertisements, and from selling our data,
that your Party
– undertakes to encourage cyber freedom in the context of an internet free from the profit motive.