by Monette Rivera, ABS-CBN News
NEW YORK CITY — On Wednesday, March 8, hundreds of women and men rallied and marched at the Washington Square Park in New York City for this year’s International Women’s Day.
“It’s important that we all stand together, and show that collective power to demand change, equality, and stand against oppression and fascism,” said Tina Cocadiz, GABRIELA NYC.
“We strike for peace, strike to an end in aggressions on women — especially on migrant women, women all over the world,” said Cole Carothers, GABRIELA NYC. “And we are with you for a international solidarity for liberation.”
Women from various grassroots organizations took the stage to voice and point out issues surrounding them.
For the Filipina women of GABRIELA New York City — employment, labor exploitation, trafficking, and immigration are among the issues their fellow Filipinos call on them for.
“We have to do proper assessment and make sense that people are aware of the truth, of what’s going on, what executive orders mean to dispel that fear, and to fearlessly organize,” said Carothers. “[To] show that we are aware, and we refuse to let it go unnoticed.”
A call on Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte to prioritize job creation is also on top of the org’s mind.
“Keep the people from leaving the Philippines everyday,” Carothers added. “There’s a lot of fear around what their safety is here in the United States. Will they be deported back to the Philippines, in conditions where they live on less than $2/day — the very reasons why they left in the first place?”
While some protestors were arrested at another demonstration near New York City’s Trump hotel, this women’s strike concluded with a peaceful march to Manhattan’s financial district.