Jump to main content
IndustriALL logotype

Stopping gender-based violence in the midst of a pandemic

4 June, 2020The second webinar by global unions on 2 June illustrated how ILO Convention 190 can address the increase of violence during Covid-19. 


“There have been reports of increasing incidents of violence and harassment against staff in the frontline services. We have heard from informal workers who also faced increased violence from authorities. For many women staying home does not mean staying safe. Those who have lost their jobs and women working from home are all at increased risks of domestic violence. Lockdown measures resulted in women being confined with violent partners. During the C190 negotiations, we spoke about all of this and what would be needed to ensure a world the instrument provide ways to deal with all of this,”

said  Marie Clarke, Secretary-Treasurer of the Canadian Labour Congress

“When women are facing domestic violence it is only in the workplace that they can get some kind of support. They want to be able to talk to somebody about their problems and they can do that in their workplace.  This is somewhere we can provide the necessary support, we have to find the solution with them, we have to put them in touch with the righ services. […] It is at the workplace that they find the strength to fight against domestic violence. If you are looking at C 190 and if you listen to the experiences of women, the importance of the workplace is very clear and it is why we need to provide them with as much support as possible,”

said Sheela Naikwade, Vice President, MSTKS in India

“We are talking about power balance. Why women workers are facing violence is because we have less power. Bearing this in mind we have to continue organize. We have to keep our community, our union members together to protect ourselves, to build our power.”

“I would like to call on all unions, leaders, organizers to look into this issue of discrimination, keep on doing trainings and help our members and workers to reflect on our own existing discrimination, and fight against discrimination so that we can fight against violence and the abuse of power in times of Covid-19,” said, Fish Ip, International Domestic Workers Federation (IDWF)

Stay tuned for the next webinar: