**DEMONSTRATION – 12 NOON AT BRIGGATE NEAR THE BODY SHOP**
**ASSEMBLY – 4:30PM BRIDGE STREET CHURCH, LS2 7QZ**
Across the world, feminists are rising up – against austerity, gendered violence, and the resurgence of the far-right. From the #MeToo
movement exposing the endemic sexual harassment and violence that still plagues our everyday lives, to resistance against femicide in Latin America, to the fight against the criminalization of abortion in Ireland and Poland, women and feminized people have spoken out, marched and struck on a mass scale to mount a new frontier of rebellion against sexist control.
These movements have rippled out to the UK, where the ravages of austerity have been keenly felt for nearly a decade, and women and non-binary people have borne the brunt of its devastation of healthcare, homes, social security and the public sphere. Last year the Women’s Strike drew together migrant cleaners, sex workers and service sector workers from across the city to strike against poverty pay, exploitation and oppression, combining the indignant energy of groups such as Sister’s Uncut engaging in direct action against cuts to domestic violence services with combative, grassroots trade unions struggling for better terms and conditions. From Birmingham to Glasgow, care and education and public sector workers have boldly struck against budget cuts and pay discrimination, bringing entire cities to a standstill.
And with the severe under-investment in the North leaving our communities, homes, industries and services most decimated, we have every reason to strike too. Austerity and neo-liberalism are not inevitable, just as street harassment, sexual harassment in our workplaces, and abuse in our homes are not something we should ever have to suffer. We refuse to remain silent, and across trade unions, community groups, and social struggles we are developing coalitions, organizing and fighting back against the callousness of a system that continues to treat our lives and labour as inferior, that values the status and profits of powerful, wealthy men over the well-being of marginalized genders.
We are rallying to assert our rage and our solidarity – for the women murdered by abusive partners who had no means to escape because of cuts to refuges, for the trans people lost to suicide waiting on threadbare healthcare provision, for the sex workers killed due to stigma and lack of working protections in our local area. We will stand alongside retail workers on precarious contracts, worn down by relentless gendered harassment from customers and bosses, students and teachers whose marketized institutions fail to address the brutal everyday reality of sexual violence, service users and carers threatened by job losses and benefit cuts and service closures.
We will disrupt business-as-usual, reclaiming the radical legacy of International Working Women’s Day, insisting that it is the collective strength of the marginalized that has always most fiercely challenged the status quo. We will walk-out, demonstrate and assemble for a world free from gendered exploitation and oppression in the streets, our workplaces and our homes. We will agitate, organize and strategize, towards a horizon of compassion, justice and dignity, in every aspect of labour and life.