A Mazdoor March was organised on the eve of International Labour Day outside the Karachi Press Club by several organisations. Chanting slogans and paying rich tributes to workers who still work despite all challenges and hardship, they marched for labour, in factories, in homes, they marched for respect, for security, and they marched for their basic rights.
The rally participants said that privatisation of government services and state-owned enterprises has also had a direct impact on marginalised communities’ access to basic public services and social protection programmes.
The removal of subsidies, bailouts for corporations, austerity measures and cuts in social development spending in Pakistan have further made the lives of women, gender minorities and other poor and marginalised communities more precarious.The subcontracting and third-party contracting system across productive sectors gives no protection regarding minimum wage, social security, health insurance and occupational or job security. Meanwhile, women and gender minorities in particular are denied minimum wage and decent work.
They demanded living wages for all workers be they working in factories, farms or homesteads, as sanitation workers or as domestic workers.They also demanded social security for all and also for the government to take notice of the continuing practice of bonded labour here.