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“Transnational care meeting: crisis and resistance” in Vienna, 17.-18. May

transnat care

Transnational care meeting in Vienna

Dear friends and comrades,

we, the Blockupy Platform Vienna, want to invite you to a transnational meeting under the slogan “Solidarity beyond Borders – Building Democracy from below. Transnational Care Meeting: Crisis and Resistance”, on the 17th and 18th of May 2014. We want to exchange our experiences, positions, activities and struggles concerning care work. Europe-wide action days linked with the international Blockupy crisis protests will take place from 15th to 25th May and we would like to join them with our meeting.

For us the term “care” means a lot of different activities, including all forms of so called housework or reproductive work, emotional work to support our friends and families and also to look after ourselves. This work is done both in the form of poorly paid wage labour as well as unpaid labour. All of these activities are crucial for the social reproduction of our society.

For a long time these activities were framed as reproductive work and gained almost no attention in economic theories. Therefore care-work was pushed to the “private” sphere and was thereby made invisible. However, this has slightly changed. Care-work in the form of wage labour is rapidly increasing, commodified forms of care gain more and more importance in economies and society.

At the same time, the economic and financial crisis is being used as an excuse to impose severe austerity measures. The so called “crisis solving” strategies mean severe cuts and privatization especially in areas like health care, social work and education. This has enormous consequences for the workers in those areas, which have to compensate cuts by working more and longer. It also affects many women in their private lives because they can no longer afford paid care services and have to do this work in addition to their wage labour. Another strategy for solving acute care problems is the low paid and/or informal work under onerous working conditions. Often migrant women from neighboring countries work undocumented in this area. To describe the latter problem, the term “transnational care space” is often used. Such spaces are for example located in the regions of Graz and Maribor/Ljubljana or Bratislava and Vienna.

Since care relations are crossing borders and we want our movements to do so too, we want to initialize a first international meeting with persons and groups of Slovenia, Slovakia and Austria. There would be space for getting to know each other and changing expectations. We would like to discuss three differenttopics: a discussion about the concept of care and what it means for us, learn about the consequences of the financial and economic crisis for the different fields and the presentation of current struggles in the area of care work, especially concerning the questions of the transnational care spaces located in these regions. Also we would appreciate a small shared action to make care work more visible in public.

More information concerning concept and conditions will be sent to you briefly. If you are interested in joining the meeting contact us: blockupy-wien@riseup.net

We look forward to hearing from you, how you like the idea and about your specific interests!

Solidary regards,

the Blockupy Platform Vienna

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