MARCH 2015


We have surpassed another year in which women’s murders have increased, male violence has not been prevented, women’s labor have been ignored, attacks towards our rights, our bodies, our identities has increased.

Female labor force participation rates in Turkey are still very low and there are obstacles for women to work. Housework and care work is performed by women’s unpaid and invisible labor. That’s why women’s paid labor outside of the household is not approved by their husbands, families and the society. More than half of working women work in insecure job and in bad conditions rather than gull time and secure ones. Women in worklife are likely to face problems such as sexual harrassment, mobbing, less pay than men. Women are also expected to do housework and care work while working outside, no social mechanism is developed to socialize this work. Furthermore, policies of the government identifies women primarily inside the family as a “mother”. Only if she has time left from “motherhood”, can she work outside “under certain circumstances”.

We welcomed last 8th of March with one of these policy packages “Parliamentary Bill on Changing Some Laws and Statutory Decrees to Protect Family and Dynamic Population”. The Bill identifies women as “mothers” and lets them to work part time and get paid within the border of this “divine duty”. This model, which is also assumed to increase women’s employment, is called “flexible work”. Not only this model means low pay and almost impossible retirement, but it is also obvious that flexibility will make it even more difficult to spend time on children or other dependant invidividuals in Turkey where weekly working hours are quite long, on contrary to what is claimed. This situation leads women to work informally  and without any kind of safety at home and even having to make use of their children as well…
Even though our demands are ignored while making policies on women’s labor and employment, we will keep on struggling on this 8th of March by repeating our demands and will be monitoring these demands! Up with women’s solidarity!


Labor Market
*Decreasing working hours by keeping full time status and improving working conditions,
*Standardize formal employment which has decent working conditions, takes access to legal care leaves, right to job security after leave and social rights as the basis and not promoting flexible and insecure working models,
*Basing increase of women’s employment in decent jobs, making and implementing regulations on gender equality in worklife,
*Using work-life balance policies primarily as tools to achieve gender equality goal,
*Declaring 8th of March as a public holiday.

Care of Children and Elderly/Handicapped Individuals
*Spreading (early child) care and educations services including 0-6 years in compatible with different living and working conditions of parents, variated in duration, type of service and place, regulated free of charge as a social right, quality service in regardless of income level differences and inequalities,
*Designing and spreading study times for primary school children to contribute their development apart form school hours in compatible with labor market working hours,
*Increasing paid maternal leave from 16 weeks to 24 weeks,
*Giving 12 months of total parental leave of which minimum 2 months is not transferrable from father to mother (only fathers can take) and promoting and monitoring this leave to be used by fathers relevantly,
*Making it possible to use parental leave flexibly until the child starts primary school,
*Abolishing worker/public employee difference in leaves,
*Signing ILO Convention No 183 (Maternity Protection Convention) and setting the monitoring mechanism needed,
*Changing the article which obligates to open kindergarten for workplaces with more than 150 women employees to more than 150 employees as mentioned in Code on Pregnant or Breastfeeding Women’s Working Conditions,

Lactation Rooms and Child Care Dorms,
* Because of exclusivity of above item for parents working in workplaces with less than 150 employees and changing costs with respect to changing number of children and low sustainability, opening public kindergartens as the basic solution with enough quotas in every municipality,
*Municipalities should put concrete goals in their annual plans and programs and allocate the sources needed for education services,
*Kindergartens opened in organized industrial zones should be free of charge and positioned far from production places which would threaten children’s health,
*Allowing public kindergartens to spend from public budget and re-opening closed public kindergartens,
*Accepting children of non public sector employees as well to empty spots in public kindergartens,
*Spreading corporate services for other dependant family members (elderly, handicapped, diseased) with variation in place, duration, type of service,

Domestic Workers
*ILO No 189 “Domestic Workers Convention” should be approved, internal law should be compatible with the convention and legal regulations should also include migrant women,
*Taking ILO Convention No 189 as the basis, ensuring domestic workers have right to social security and organization like other workers,
*Making a clear definition of the occupation and classification of the services,
*Passing a worker’s health and security law for domestic workers taking special conditions of the house they are working into account,
*Obtaining statistical data by TÜİK to determine number of workers in domestic services, occupational accidents and diseases etc.,

Home Based Workers
*Signing ILO No 177 Home Work Convention and making the regulations needed,
*Making legal regulations for home based workers to set up their own organizations, being their members and participating in their activities,
*Making special regulations for formal work and working conditions to be monitored by Ministry of Work and Social Security since the workplace is home,
*Ensuring work health precautions are taken while home based workers produce goods or services at home,
*Defining home based workers occupationally, making relevant regulations for them to apply to İŞKUR
*Organizing support and consulting services for home based workers especially by local governments for both child/elderly care and consultation in legal issues,

Seasonal Agricultural Workers
*Making regulations needed for including seasonal agricultural workers in social security,
*Regular statistics should be taken by TÜİK,
*Opening care centers close to fields for small children and compensation education centers for schoolchildren.
Social Services and Benefits
*Distributing social benefits on need basis so as to cover the whole population,
*Process of gathering social benefits under a single roof and distribution should be transparent,
*Spreading quality and accessible corporate services and developing alternative services models in the framework of individual’s needs,
*Providing a holistic and corporate support for single parent families.

Social Security
*Abolishing the obligation of premium payment in order to benefit from health insurance,
*Private insurance should not be substituted for public insurance that state should provide,
*Reorganizing seniority and retirementrights taking labor market conditions into account and expanding these so as to cover the whole population,
*Including those who receive care at home salary into social security.

March 7th, 2015

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