International Women's Day on March 8, 2001 will celebrate the second Global Women's Strike. Last year, women in 64 countries on every continent took what time they could away from waged and unwaged work in the first-ever global strike "for a millennium which values all women's work and all women's lives" and "an end to no pay, low pay and too much work."
Women related the demands to their specific needs and ongoing campaigns — for land reform, welfare benefits, and pensions.
In India, thousands of village women struck against housework and fieldwork, demanding wages for all work as well as land.
The Housewives Union in Santa Fe, Argentina, demanded "pensions without contributions for workers without wages," and in Burkina Faso, rural women struck "to exist," demanding money for birth certificates and identity cards.
The strike was first called by women in Ireland who are demanding an annual paid day off in recognition of their enormous contribution to society, most of which is unwaged.
It was made global by the International Wages for Housework Campaign to protest the grotesque discrepancy between $800 billion a year spent on military budgets world-wide, while $80 billion would provide the essentials of life — water, sanitation, basic health, nutrition, education and a minimum income — for everyone.
More information on the Global Women's Strike is available online at http://womenstrike8m.server101.com.