Highlights from the Women’s and Men’s Workshop

The Women’s and Men’s Workshop—led by Diane Balser, the International Liberation Reference Person for Women, and Tim Jackins, the International Reference Person for the RC Communities, near Washington, D.C., USA, in October 2017—was a powerful RC gathering of minds.

We worked on how sexism and male domination affect both women and men, and not settling for their effects on our minds. Both Diane and Tim said that our ultimate goal is the unification of the sexes against the oppression and toward building a true sisterhood and brotherhood among all humans.

Diane pushed us to examine the effects of sexism on our lives. One of the primary effects is to make sexism seem less important than other oppressions. As females we need to prioritize healing from the oppression and fully reclaiming our minds and our power.

I led a support group for Asian-heritage women, almost all of whom had grown up in Asia. We had to build the muscle to work on early hurts and to stay with working on sexism. We discharged on sexual violence and male preference in our families and communities. None of us had been spared sexual violence, and none of us had been fully wanted as females. We’d learned early on that we were the second sex.

I led a table with Micaela Morse for women who were leading women’s liberation in RC. Great work is being done in many local Communities. We loved hearing about our successes and struggles in leading women’s support groups.

I also got to co-lead a morning group with Alana Eichner on contemporary issues affecting women in the United States and globally. We focused on the following:

  • Violence against women (incest, domestic violence, sexual trafficking, and prostitution)
  • The continuing feminization of poverty
  • Discrimination and sexual harassment in the workplace
  • Pay inequity
  • The devaluing of women’s labor
  • The effects of climate change on women

Poor people face higher risks and heavier burdens from climate change, and the majority of the world’s poor people are women. Also, women’s unequal participation in decision-making continues to prevent women from fully contributing to creating and implementing climate-related policies.

Azi Khalili

International Liberation Reference Person for South, Central, and West Asian-Heritage People

Brooklyn, New York, USA

Reprinted from the RC e-mail discussion list for leaders of women

(Present Time 190, January 2018)

Last modified: 2022-12-25 10:17:04+00