Resolution on Tasks of CITU among Working Women

The 14th Conference of CITU, being held on 4-8 April 2013 in Kannur reiterates its commitment to carry forward and strengthen the work among working women that CITU has started nearly 35 years ago.

The conference notes that CITU has made considerable advances in organising working women since 1979 when it organised the first all India convention of working women in Chennai and constituted the All India Coordination Committee of Working Women. The membership of women in CITU which was less than 7% at that time has gone up to 31.96% in 2011. In several states it is more than 50%. Women’s presence in the mobilisation of CITU, in its day to day activities, in the conferences at the state and national level, in the decision making bodies has also increased since then.

While expressing its satisfaction at this progress, this conference also is conscious that many weaknesses that have been repeatedly pointed out by the successive conventions of the All India Coordination Committee of Working Women (CITU) as well as the successive all India conferences of CITU are yet to be overcome.

The general weakness of unions, particularly in industries where both men and women work like plantations, beedi, brick kiln etc, in raising the specific problems of working women like equal wages, maternity benefits and crèches, sexual harassment etc from the union platform and mobilising both men and women on these issues, still continues. In several states, even where women membership is above the national average, resistance to elect women as delegates to conferences and to the decision making bodies continues. This was evident in many of the recently concluded state conferences also.

Our work among working women is not reviewed in the state committees. Proper attention is not paid to identify, train, develop and promote women cadres. No action is taken by the state committees to ensure formation of women’s sub committees in our unions in sectors with considerable women workers and to see that they function effectively. Holding the state conventions and constituting state level coordination committees is observed as a periodic ritual in some states while in some states even this is not done.

This conference reiterates that our work among working women is part of our objective of uniting the entire working class and mobilising it to play its due role in leading the struggle against all exploitation. It firmly believes that overcoming the weaknesses and improving our work among working women will contribute to strengthening the CITU and trade union movement as a whole. The basic weakness lies in the influence of the class divided patriarchal society along with the lack of consciousness on the urgency of organising and activating working women in leading bodies of CITU at all levels. The CITU as a whole has to make conscious and sustained effort to overcome these weaknesses. The convention of All India Coordination Committee of Working Women, which had to be deferred due to unavoidable reasons and will be held shortly, will also discuss these issues in detail and make the necessary recommendations.
This 14th conference of CITU calls upon all the state committees of CITU, its industrial federations and affiliated units to rededicate to the task of strengthening the work among working women by –

 Discussing our work among working women as a specific agenda in the first state committee meeting immediately after this national conference

 Identifying the affiliated unions in sectors with considerable number of women workers and constitute women’s sub committees, make them functional and take up women’s specific issues from the union platform

 Allot a state office bearer of CITU to monitor the effective implementation of the above at all levels of the organisation

 Organise separate trade union classes for working women activists and develop them to take up more responsibilities in CITU and its affiliated unions

 Pay special attention to recruit women full timers

The Conference resolves to convene a national workshop with the participation of the president/ general secretary of all the state committees of CITU, after the national convention of All India Coordination Committee of Working Women to chalk out further concrete measures to strengthen our work among working women.

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