Women Workers' National Workshop

AICCTU held its national women workers' workshop in Tata Nagar on 25–26 June 2016. The workshop was held in Munniji Sabhagar, Mahendra Singh Nagar. The theme of the workshop was: "Organising Working Women: Challenges and Tasks".

The open session held on 25 June was presided over by AICCTU vice president Com. Shashi Yadav. AICCTU national secretary Com. Suvendu Sen welcomed the participants and AIPWA national secretary Com. Kavita Krishnan inaugurated the workshop. AICCTU General Secretary Com. Rajiv Dimri gave the concluding speech in the open session. The solidarity message sent by Com. Kalpana Wilson of the South Asia Solidarity Group was read out in the workshop. AIPWA National Secretary Com. Chaitali Sen also sent her solidarity wishes for the workshop. 66 comrades from 12 states participated in the workshop. There were ASHA, Anganwadi, mid-day meal, domestic, garment, construction and beedi workers among the participants. Nursing students from Bihar too attended the workshop.

Comrades Bhuvana, Shashi Yadav, Saroj Chaubey, Meena Pal and Premlata Pandey, AICCTU National Council members, presented papers on various challenges facing women workers and discussing in detail the need to organize women workers. There was a lively discussion on these papers and the participants shared their experiences in organizing various sections of women workers.

As a part of the efforts to make the 2 September general strike a success, the workshop decided to organize a campaign in the month of July on the following demands of women workers in the country, apart from state/sector specific demands:

  • Stop budgetary cuts for welfare programs such as the Integrated Child Development Scheme (ICDS), National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) and mid-day meal. Stop privatisation of the ICDS and NRHM (under which anganwadi and ASHA workers are employed), as well as the mid-day meal schemes and stop handing these schemes to NGOs.
  • ASHA, anganwadi, mid-day meal workers, etc. should be granted the status of government employees. and monthly wages of Rs. 20,000 should be fixed for them.
  • Ensure equal wages for equal work.
  • Ensure maternity and child care benefits for women workers.
  • Strict implementation of Prevention of Sexual Harassment in Workplaces Act.
  • Meaningful social security measures for women workers.
  • Enumeration of women workers in various sectors in the country.
  • Formation of a national-level committee which will investigate into women workers' demands and come forward with recommendations which are to be implemented in a time-bound manner.

The workshop formed a 16- member cell with comrades Bhuvana and Shashi Yadav as joint convenors. This cell of AICCTU will take up further work on this front.

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