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Struggle for women’s rights continue: Cosatu

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Despite some achievements on women’s rights, the struggle for women still continues, the Congress of SA Trade Unions said on Saturday.

“Cosatu is particularly worried about the escalating violence and crime against women and children, including the abduction and shooting of children in the recent past, all of which undermine the strides forward made by women since 1956,” it said in a statement.

The trade union federation said the march by thousands of women to the Union Buildings in Pretoria in 1956 against pass books was a turning point in history.

Cosatu called on unions to help fight violence and crime and to give support to families affected.

“We also call on law enforcement authorities to make sure that they spare no effort but ensure that violent criminals are put behind bars and justice is served without any bribery or loss of dockets and evidence.”

On this day in 1956 around 20,000 women participated in a national march to protest against pass law legislation, which required non-white South Africans to carry a document on them to prove that they were allowed to enter “white areas”.

Women of all races and ages from all corners of the country marched to the Union Buildings in Pretoria.

The march was organised by the Federation of South African Women (Fedsaw) and led by Helen Joseph, Rahima Moosa, Sophie Williams and Lilian Ngoyi. SAPA

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