A seminar on 16 days of activism on the issue of "End Economic Exploitation and violence against women Domestic Workers" was conducted by Women in Struggle for Empowerment (WISE)at Lahore Press Club on Thursday .
The domestic workers highlighted their problems in the seminar and demanded to stop sexual harassment against women and girls . Amna Afzal Program Manager WISE , shared data a total of 4329 cases of rape and 209 cases of gang rape were reported in Punjab . WISE quoted Punjab Gender Disparity Report and said In District Lahore, the number of cases were high (702), in 2021. Amna Afzal added that 197 women were killed in the name of honour in Punjab. Highest numbers (16) of honour killings were reported from Faisalabad.
On the occasion, Executive director of WISE , Bushra Khaliq shared with the women in the seminar that violence against women is not a women's rights issue ,but also a human rights issue . She further added that it affects women's health and their ability to get an education, work and to participate in political life.
Bushra Khaliq further stressed women to be united against the violence against women. We are workers friendly and we demanded from the government that make legislation for the protection of women and acknowledge it . Now , the laws are there and but there is a need to be implemented it. Violence cannot be tolerated any levep, she added. We talk about peaceful society where not one can exploit anyone . She demanded equal wages for media workers on the occasion and said class bases must be ended . No one can be allowed violence at any woman. She said that women must be given respect. Women in our society should be equal rights in homes and outside of the homes as well.
Bushra Khaliq termed the law of domestic workers 2019 a revolutionary step and said that after this law domestic worker take it pride that they are domestic workers. She demanded complete end of Child labour. Bushra Khaliq lauded that the government has issued notification of minimum wages of Rs 32000 Per month. Now, she demanded its implementation.
She further added that violence including emotional exploitation, beating to wives or daughters is not a personal or private issue. It is a collective issue and violation of human rights. Society could be free from violence, if we do struggle collectively, added Bushra Khaliq.
Aima Mahmood, Labour rights activist said that women are united against violence , now. She resolved to fight against any kind of violence in homes and at workplace as well. We need to stop violence for the protection of women , said Aima Mahmood . She demanded from the government to stop honour killings . Rules and regulations have been made by social security and said that you (Domestic Workers)would be recognised as workers and will get benefit from it accordingly. Women workers should be united for social protection so that they could get their due rights .
The women said that they face violence , emotional exploitation, violence in their home too.
Women sang a song in favour of women, "violence k bandhnon ko behnen ati hen, Nia Zamana laen g" .
In the end , they raised slogans against any kind of exploitation. They staged and rally outside of press club .