Rally and protest to be held Saturday
Campaign demands supported accommodation for homeless women and action on the cost of living crisis
What: Launch of Women Demand Better campaign
Where: Unite the union offices, 26-34 Antrim Road, Belfast BT15 2AA
Representatives of Unite the union, GMB, CWU will speak at the launch the trade union-led Women Demand Better initiative at a press conference Thursday (27 October). The campaign will be formally launched by Clare Moore of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions.
The campaign is calling on the Minister for Communities Deirdre Hargey to deliver on her promise to reinstate services for homeless women after the closure of Regina Coeli hostel and take action on the cost of living crisis.
Unite Regional Coordinating Officer Susan Fitzgerald explained the background to the campaign
“Women Demand Better arose from the occupation of Regina Coeli House, Northern Ireland’s only supported accommodation for homeless women, in an effort by workers to prevent its closure. That occupation only ended after the workers received assurances from Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey that expanded and enhanced services for homeless women would open in May.
“It is now nearly November and nothing has been delivered.
“Our members are acutely aware of the impact this political failure is having on homeless women – which has been tragically underlined by recent deaths of people on our streets. It is also clear that Stormont has failed to deliver on all the issues we are highlighting.
“It is twenty-five years since trade unionist Baroness May Blood, a Unite member of Unite, played a key role alongside countless other women in winning peace by taking action and fighting for women’s voices to be heard.
“In the intervening years, Stormont has totally failed both workers and women: on reproductive rights, marriage equality and LGBTQI+ rights, and now on the cost of living crisis.
“The reality is that women continue to be the shock-absorbers of Stormont austerity, of sexism and inequality, and of the cost of living crisis and we aren’t taking it anymore. We are fighting for action and better services for women and all who need these services and we are asking people of all genders to support this vital campaign by attending the protest on Saturday.” The Women Demand Better rally and protest will be held at Belfast City Hall this Saturday [29th October] at 12am.