To mark International Women's Day, some 20,000 people took to the streets of Palma yesterday evening. The demands were various: an end to pay inequality; an end to the glass ceiling; an end to sexual harassment and violence. Among those joining the protest was President Armengol. She said that although there have been legal advances, true equality still does not exist.
Earlier, 2,500 people had filled Palma's Plaça Cort. The rally issued a feminist manifesto based on the slogan "if we all stop, the world stops". Eva Cerdeiriña, head of social policies and equality at the CCOO union, said that yesterday's action was to demand improvements in the labour market, greater participation and political policies to promote equality.
Female employees in the public sector took part in a strike, which was supported by the regional government. Another spokesperson for the rally, Concha Calafat, defended the strike. It was necessary in order to highlight problems with inequality, discrimination and violence. These problems, she stated have not decreased but increased. A demonstration in itself was "no longer enough".
The manifesto denounced gender violence and cuts to public services. It called for a fight against the male-female wage gap and for diversity in education "free of patriarchal oppression".
Specific groups also read out their manifestos. Shirley Siles, president of the Kellys Union Balear (chambermaids), demanded that occupational incapacities and complaints are properly recognised. She added that the work of the chambermaid is followed by going home, preparing dinner, doing the washing; in fact, doing everything. Carmen Buades, speaking on behalf of female journalists, stressed the social responsibility of journalism as a profession and criticised the fact that women are "victims of discrimination" in the sector. Management positions, she noted, are mostly occupied by men.
In a tweet, President Armengol stated that she was proud of the women in her government, "proud of their efforts and abilities". She highlighted gender policies being pursued by the government and expressed further pride in a "great team that has the clear goal of working from a feminist perspective".
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