For a year we have been echoing from all the media and from the declarations of the rulers that the pandemic affects everyone, no matter how rich, no matter where we come from and no matter what gender we are assigned to.
That this is a bold lie of the rulers is clear to everyone who takes the public transport instead of the limousine to work, who starves in overcrowded refugee camps because of their passport or who suffer daily from the unreasonable demands of patriarchy even in this crisis.
In this post, on the occasion of the approaching March 8, we want to deal with the special situation of women *, inter-, non-binary, trans people and agents (FINTA *) in the pandemic. For over a year we have been living under more or less massive lockdown conditions.
The state pandemic measures mean that the lives of all people, if they can even afford an apartment, take place more than ever before within their own four walls. For FINTA *, apart from the general burdens of the lockdown, there are special burdens. Because in the patriarchy in which we live, the majority of the unpaid housework and care work is still sustained on them. Capitalism depends on this free labor of reproduction in order to sustain itself. When the daycare centers and schools are now closed, FINTA * often has the task of looking after and looking after the children who are confined to their own homes. The double burden of wage labor and housework and care work, which is already common, increases even more in this way.
But not only the workload of FINTA * within their own four walls is increasing many times over: In the so-called “system-relevant” branches of the wage work area, e.g. at cash registers or at hospital beds, FINTA * still make up the majority of the workers. Here too, the extreme situation of the pandemic leads to overload, both physically and mentally. The work risk increases enormously with the additional risk of infection. FINTA * experiences increased risks not only on contract work, but of course also at home. We all know that even without the pandemic, their own four walls are not a safe space for many FINTA *.
Instead, patriarchal violence is part of everyday life for many. The withdrawal of life into the living environment increases the risk of falling victim to this violence. That women’s shelters are closing at the same time is a fatal development. The number of femicides (= murders of FINTA) remains extremely high and is often disguised with the classification that it is only the result of a couple quarrel. Now we need measures to effectively protect FINTA * even during the pandemic and to improve its conditions:
Improvement of working conditions in the so-called “systemically relevant” professions, in the nursing and hospital sector and everywhere else: more wages, better protection against infection, less working hours! No more wasting public health care!
Better protection against patriarchal violence: improve the capacities of emergency hotlines, reopen and open women’s houses to illegals and those without a German passport, increase funding!
More homeless shelters for FINTA *
Redistribution of housework and care work: Men * have to get involved more so that the burden is not just on FINTA *!
These demands are the first, important demands that we can fight for as a feminist mass movement. We have to build this mass movement! At the same time, it is clear that these demands are not sufficient to end the suppression of FINTA * and the catastrophic conditions in the care sector. The state, capitalism and patriarchy must be overcome together with all other forms of oppression!
The profit-oriented, private-sector health system has to give way to a system in which care is oriented towards people’s needs and in which the employees organize their work themselves instead of just implementing what the bosses order.
We have to work towards these goals in the long term! Ahead!