Reply from Feminist Fightback London: After we had wished them a successful action on May 19th, this answer fluttered into our letterbox:
We were very happy to receive your letter in solidarity with our action. The pro-choice action in Stratford, London against “Helpers of God’s Precious Infants” on Sat 9th of May 2015 was vibrant and loud. Feminist protestors –both from Feminist Fightback and other allies that came for the action- blocked the anti-choice religious group as they tried to march from a church to the abortion clinic. The action took place outside the church –with the intention of not interfering nearby the abortion clinic- and attracted passer-bys who stopped and engaged with us. The group ranged from women to children to male allies around colourful handcrafted banners. We made noise with pots and pans, whistles and the stereo that was playing punk songs as well as feminist classics. There was a brilliant moment where we sang along to Aretha Franklin’s Respect, summed up why we were there: RESPECT women’s choices! The feminist presence managed to delay the anti-choice group for over two hours until we were pushed back by the police (who escorted the procession), though the anti-choice demonstration only had ten minutes in front of the clinic. A great achievement!
We would also wish to express our solidarity with your action on the 1st of June in Annaberg-Buchholz in Germany. It is great to make connections with and be inspired by comrades working on similar issues elsewhere. Attempts by religious groups to make regressive demands in terms of reproductive rights and harassing women against making choices regarding their own bodies, are merely the last desperate acts of a dilapidated dogma. We will continue to engage in action to stand against fundamentalist religious attempts to control and dictate women’s lives. We very much appreciate engaging in on-going conversations with comrades around the world on this issue!
We look forward to hearing about your experience and in combining efforts to overcome the challenges to our reproductive rights!
Information to the protest will be found here.
The workshop will describe the history of Women in Exile and Friends. In a power point presentation and a short film clip from our raft tour last summer, this was joined by refugee women and supporters without refugee background nation wide.
We will tell a story that started from personal problems, which made us organize ourselves politically and friends supporting our political fight. After that, we will discuss together about general refugee issues, from a woman’s perspective such as isolation, exclusion, sexist and racist discrimination.
Women in Exile‘is an initiative of refugee women founded in Brandenburg in 2002 to fight for their rights. We decided to organize ourselves as a refugee women’s group because we have made the experience that refugee women are doubly discriminated against, not only by the racist and discriminative refugee laws in general, but also as women.
Women in Exile & Friends‘ was formed in 2011 by Women in Exile & activists in solidarity without refugee background. We focus on the abolition of Lagers, all laws governing the life of asylum seekers and migrants, and on the intersection of racism and sexism. In our group we experience that women can relate to each other, regardless of their differences in age, origin, religion, status, sexual orientation or other factors. And that together we can make an impact. We develop strategies to achieve political change and take our protest against the inhuman living conditions of refugee women to the public.
Wednesday May 13th
6.30pm // Martin Luther Str. 13 (kosmotique)
The option to choose abortion is part of the human rights. In Germany since 1871 the §218 considers abortion a crime. The following paragraphs state the conditions that have to be met to legally carry out an abortion. One of those conditions is the so called „Zwangsberatung“, an obligatory counselling. This is opposing (queer) feminist demands for bodily autonomy. In addition abortion is still a taboo in societey. Womyn*, who have had an abortion, are still being stygmatized. Also increasingly loud voices coming from fundamentally christian groups as well as right wing groups are calling for a prohibition of abortion in general. So we think it’s time to put the discussions about abortion back on (queer)feminist agendas, to discuss old answers and to pose new questions!
We are happy to announce that Katja Krolzik-Matthei will be our guest in the cafém on May 17th. She will talk about her recently published book „§218 – Feministische Perspektiven auf die Abtreibungsdebatte in Deutschland“ (Unrast Verlag). After her talk there will be the opportunity to discuss the upcoming protests against the „Schweigemarsch“ of the CDL on June 1st in Annaberg-Buchholz (more information on: schweigemarsch-stoppen.de) . You can also purchase bustickets and we can talk about actions that could take place against the event.
As usual the cafém will open at 2pm. There will be a small brunch buffet and we are happy if people contribute and bring along some stuff (like cake or salads, or whatever vegan) Just hang out with us, read some zines or have a cup of coffee!
The event is organized in cooperation with the Stura of the TU Dresden.
cafém: 2 – 8pm
talk: 4 – 5.30pm
Information on the protest in Annaberg-Buchholz: 6pm
May 6th, 7pm
AZ Conni, Dresden
We want to do a short input about christian antifeminism and fundamentalism and discuss together about what it means to us individually, for our social life and our political struggles. Why do we even have to deal with christian fundamentalism and how can this work? We also want to focus on reproductional rights and analyse how they became one of the main battlefields of fundamentalist movements (s. „Schweigemärsche“). Annaberg-Buchholz is on the 1st of June, christian fundamentalism, unfortunately, is all the year…
P.S.: half of the talk will be in English and half in German
In the end we will give some information about the action planned in Annaberg-Buchholz.
The fight concerning repoductive rights is an international one. Even so the situation is mostly different in each country it is possible to find similarities. One example is the Pro Choice – Action against a religious, right wing demonstration on May 9th in London.
The group Feminist Fightback organizes a counter action.
Here is their announcement.
A religious anti-abortion group are planning a procession from a church in east London to a nearby abortion clinic. We can’t let this go unchallenged – they might have a right to express their opinion, but they don’t have a god-given right to stand outside a clinic, peddle lies and intimidate and harass people. As well as making sure people can access the clinic safely, we want to do a lively action that makes a stand against the religious right-wing and their anti-women views that are dressed up as concern and counselling.
More details to follow but pls save the time and date! The location is near a tube station in East London.
There will be a banner and placard making session on Tuesday 28th April at the Common House 7-9pm. We can use the riso printer to print off your own ‘pro-choice’ designs. We will also discuss plans of action for the day.
Spread the news to all your networks!
Abortion is not just a ‘women’s’ issue. And not just about a woman’s individual ‘right’ or ‘choice’**, which is hard to come by in a capitalist system, especially for black and working class women who always bear the brunt of such policies – either by not being able to access abortions if they want one, or being forced to have one because the state doesn’t want them to reproduce, or having to have one because they can’t afford to have a baby. As communists/anarchists/socialists of various types, we should all recognise the importance of reproductive justice, linked as it is to capitalist production and control over working class bodies. We all have an interest in defending ourselves against the state and religious powers.
Abortion is a class issue! All genders welcome!
This year, like in the past years, we print “No Means No” – leaflets. For this time we have a cooperation with the Referat Gleichstellungspolitik (Department for equalisation politics of the TU Dresden’s student organisation) and the AZ Conni.
Languages: Spanish, English, German
If you want some just contact us, so we can give some to you. As well it is possible to download and print them yourself.
On June 1st fundamentalist christians and other people want to march through Annaberg-Buchholz. They support the so called “pro life”-movement.
From now on you will be able to purchase tickets to go to Annaberg-Buchholz by bus at the book shop “König Kurt” at AZ Conni.
More information in English will follow soon.
As the URA (Undogmatische Radikale Antifa Dresden – undogmatic radical antifa) already did, we want to call on everyone to support the petition of “Frauen für Frauen e.V. Leipzig” (women for women Leipzig)! We’re asking all of you to contribute to an amendment of the current rape legislation in Germany, so that the “Istanbul Convention” can be implemented and so that people are liable to prosecution for sexual activities to which the others involved didn’t consent.
Petition (in German)