Women form almost half the population of our country. This segment of society, mothers, wives, sisters or daughters, have for many years been subjected to discrimination and inequality. At times, this inequality has led to their elimination from various social activities (often under the pretence of protecting them). The result has been nothing but profound frustration and anger. Some of the influencing factors that promote inequality and discrimination against women, at family level, include poverty, addiction, unemployment, illiteracy and family traditions.
But is the family structure the only factor in creating this discrimination? What is the influence of laws in shaping of these discriminatory behaviours? Ratification of laws on polygamy, temporary marriage and similar issues also give rise to institutionalised discrimination and violence. In addition to these laws, other discriminatory regulations include prevention of women admission into sports stadia, gender segregation in universities, government departments, public transports and public spaces. In other words, government laws attempt to create a “closed-up” space around woman “outside” her home.
What is certain is that women too have risen against these conditions. An example of such confrontations is the change in women’s way of life. The active presence of women in public, changes in their attitude towards issues such as marriage, parenting and, and most importantly, divorce, are the inevitable consequences of this wrong arrangement of structure of the power- relations in society.
Creation of a climate of violence against women, together with the resulting fear and trepidation will not only affect women but will also influence the other half of society. Let’s remember that if women leave the public space, the atmosphere will be horrific for everyone.
The Union of Metalworkers and Mechanics of Iran declares its support for all moves to eliminate discrimination and inequality against women and will endeavour, along with other working class activists, to eradicate all barriers to equality in social and economic fields in society.
Women workers, hand in hand with their brothers, are taking part in this struggle. Iranian women are now vanguards in struggle for better living conditions as they fight against unequal pay, lack of employment contracts, “no-text signed” contracts, sexual exploitation in workplace, job insecurity, lack of childcare and crèches in workplaces and finally late payment of wages which are substantially below poverty line.
While supporting the legitimate struggle for women’s rights, the Union of Metalworkers and Mechanics of Iran calls for the release of those noble imprisoned women and equality for women and men in all realms of society.
Freedom and equality of women and men in every walk of life are irrefutable rights and are not achievable without women’s participation.
We salute the Working Women of Iran and the World
Long live the 8th of March, the International Women’s Day
The Union of Metalworkers and Mechanics of Iran
8th March 2018