SINO ANG TERRORISTA? MIPCEL-AFP SILA ANG TERRORISTA!

 

For Immediate Release

July 23, 2019

Contact: Irma Shauf-Bajar, National Chairperson, gabrielawomen@gmail.com

 

SINO ANG TERRORISTA? MIPCEL-AFP SILA ANG TERRORISTA!

 

GABRIELA USA condemns the assault and harassment of GABRIELA USA and BAYAN USA members by the hosts and participants of the Mindanao Indigenous Peoples Council of Elders (MIPCEL) Duterte backed tour in the US. Concerned Filipinos and allies disrupted the MIPCEL event in Arlington, Virginia to expose the truth that the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and Duterte government are primarily responsible for the mass killings and displacement of Lumad people, and these touring “leaders” are in fact members of the AFP, paramilitary forces, are Lumad sell outs and have become traitors to the Lumad communities they claim to represent.

 

On July 22nd, 50 concerned Filipinos and allies from around the US participated in the direct action to protest the lies presented by the representatives of the MIPCEL Duterte backed tour. Protesters walked into the event venue with taped mouths and holding signs. The MIPCEL representatives and attendees reacted violently, and physically assaulted several protestors including grabbing two women’s breasts. Protesters removed their taped mouths and chanted “AFP-MIPCEL, STOP LUMAD KILLINGS! SAVE OUR SCHOOLS!” This comes a week after protesters, including GABRIELA members, were aggressively grabbed and physically dragged out of the MIPCEL Duterte backed tour stop at the Los Angeles consulate on July 15th.

 

GABRIELA USA members have consistently participated in integrations with Lumad communities and the Lumad community schools. Children’s access to education is a human right and an important pillar in any community, especially for the Lumad whose ancestral lands are constantly threatened by the presence of foreign mining corporations, the AFP, and paramilitary groups like ALAMARA who are responsible for the series of deaths of Lumad people and Lumad leaders. It is important for Lumad community schools like Alcadev, MISFI Academy, and the Salugpungan Ta’ Tanu Igkanogon Community Learning Centers to teach literacy to their students, especially as groups like MIPCEL serve as contract negotiators between indigenous tribes and private business, deceiving Lumad into signing away ancestral land.  

 

GABRIELA USA condemns these attacks on our women who have put their bodies on the line to expose and oppose the MIPCEL as agents of the AFP and traitors to the lumad communities whose schools are occupied and shut down by military forces and by the Duterte government’s Department of Education. We continue to support the Lumad community schools like Alcadev, MISFI Academy, Salugpungan Ta’ Tanu Igkanogon Community Learning Centers, their communities, students, and teachers. 

 

STOP LUMAD KILLINGS!

SAVE OUR SCHOOLS!

AFP-MIPCEL OUT OF LUMAD COMMUNITIES!

 

GABRIELA USA Commemorates the 50th Anniversary of the Stonewall Rebellion

GABRIELA USA Commemorates the 50th Anniversary of the Stonewall Rebellion 


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 28, 2019
Reference: Irma Shauf-Bajar, National Chairperson, GABRIELA USA, gabrielawomen@gmail.com

Art by Cathy Dumaauurgh

Members of GABRIELA USA commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Rebellion. We march in solidarity with trans and gender non conforming people of color who have suffered at the hands of state violence, police brutality and the prison industrial complex, to U.S. militarization abroad. We are in solidarity with all queer and trans folks who continue to struggle against various forms of violence including the continued deportation of thousands of im/migrants by President Trump.  

The LGBTQGNC community continue to be victimized against their rights to regular jobs, decent wages, and access to basic health and social services. Apart from these, the oppression of patriarchy continues to make vulnerable hate crimes, sexual assault and rape, arbitrary detention, denial of employment and education opportunities, and serious discrimination in relation to the enjoyment of other human rights. Today, eighty (80) countries still criminalize consensual same-sex relations or discussion of LGBTQ rights, and punishments include prison sentences, flogging, and even the death penalty. Much of the laws that criminalize LGBTQGNC people are a legacy of centuries-old Western colonization and imperialism.

We recognize the links between state violence against LGBTQGNC people within the U.S. and U.S. militarization globally, which perpetuate a culture of violence targeting queer, trans, gender non-conforming, and people of color. 

We call on our Filipino people in the U.S., along with other im/migrant and LGBTQGNC communities to join us to continue to fight and defend our right to live in dignity, free from all forms of violence and repression, because the the Stonewall Rebellion is not over until all marginalized sectors of the Trans, Queer and GNC community, working class im/migrants, women, youth and people of color have justice and are liberated.  We see the liberation of all LGBTQGNC as integral to the liberation of all oppressed people.

Let us RISE against homophobia, transmisogyny and violence against women, RESIST US militarization, and UNITE for genine liberation, safety, and self-determination!

End Violence Against Trans and Gender Non-Conforming People! Justice for All Victims of Transphobia, Militarization, and State Violence!

Support Black trans women and trans migrants! No to Deportation! Legalization for All!

DUTERTE’S RAPE REMARKS CALL FOR OUSTER

IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 12, 2019
Contact: Irma Shauf-Bajar, National Chairperson, gabrielawomen@gmail.com

GABRIELA USA demands the ousting of President Rodrigo Duterte because of his abhorrent remarks on the rape of Overseas Filipino Workers(OFWs). Since the beginning of his presidency, he has made it clear that he does not respect the rights and bodies of women. His words and actions have ranged from kissing a woman without her consent on television, telling soldiers of the Armed Forces of the Philippines they may rape women, instructing AFP soldiers to shoot women fighters of the New People’s Army in the vagina, and going as far as to blame women and their beauty for rape.

“Duterte’s recent remarks on the rape of OFWs show an attitude that is inimical to the welfare and lives of Filipino migrant women workers,” GABRIELA Philippines posted on their Facebook page, “He blatantly disregards the reasons why his countrymen opt to work abroad: extreme poverty and lack of job opportunities in the country, which he fails to address. How can OFW women now expect the Philippine government to protect and defend them from rape and sexual abuse in host countries when the President himself has already justified rape as a cultural practice?”

Although Duterte assumed his presidency on the platform of being for the people and promising to help OFWs, his administration has been noticeably absent in advocating for OFW women like Mary Jane Veloso who was implicated in a drug trafficking case in Indonesia and put on death row. International outcry and strong organizing efforts by National Democratic organizations won a reprieve from Veloso getting executed, yet she remains imprisoned on death row in Indonesia, separated from her son.

The Duterte Regime continues to pass policies that only intensify the struggle of poor and working Filipinos who are forced to migrate to provide for their families. Examples include Duterte’s TRAIN law which exacerbates the chronic contractualization leaving workers with low wages and no benefits, in the face of rising prices of basic needs like food and housing. The Build Build Build program hires contractors from outside the Philippines rather than employing people actively searching for jobs within the country.

Duterte’s bloody drug war results in OFW mothers–who went abroad to support their children–coming home to their children in coffins.

“It’s been two years too long, with thousands of lives brutally killed under this presidency,” said Shauf-Bajar. “A president who engages in and permits violence against women, is no president at all. The women and workers of the Philippines deserve better and GABRIELA USA calls for the ousting of President Rodrigo Duterte.”

End Violence Against Women!

#LabananAngAbuso
#OUSTDUTERTE
#RiseResistUnite

Source: Inquirer Rape Comes With Territory for Filipino Workers Abroad

GABRIELA USA Commemorates Jennifer Laude’s Death Anniversary With Nationwide Screenings of “Call Her Ganda,” Calls On Filipino Americans to Resist Duterte and U.S. Military Occupation

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Contact: Irma Shauf-Bajar, National Chairperson, gabrielawomen@gmail.com

 

GABRIELA USA Commemorates Jennifer Laude’s Death Anniversary With Nationwide Screenings of “Call Her Ganda,” Calls On Filipino Americans to Resist Duterte and U.S. Military Occupation

Community Screening in Los Angeles, California

 

U.S.A. — On October 11th, the four year anniversary of Jennifer Laude’s death, GABRIELA USA held screenings and discussions of PJ Raval’s documentary, Call Her Ganda, in New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Oakland, and Seattle. The screenings were part of GABRIELA USA’s larger campaign: RISE Against Fascism, RESIST Militarization, UNITE for Self-Determination!

 

Jennifer Laude, 26-year-old Filipina trans woman murdered by US Marine Joseph Scott Pemberton in Olongapo, Philippines, drew international attention to the unpopular occupation of the United States military and the epidemic of violence against women in the Philippines.

 

In the ensuing fight for justice for Jennifer Laude, GABRIELA USA exposes and condemns the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA), a military pact that governs the entry and presence of American troops in Philippine territory. As seen in the case of Laude, the VFA works to grant US troops immunity from prosecution under Philippine law, enforce unequal relations between the US and Philippines, trample on Philippine sovereignty, and expand militarization to the detriment of human rights.

 

“We must rise against fascism, resist militarization, and unite for self-determination, especially in the face of deepening dictatorship under Duterte, whose fascist rule is funded directly by Trump’s pro-war, pro-occupation administration and $184.5 million in U.S. tax dollars,” says Irma Shauf-Bajar, Chairperson of GABRIELA USA. “The mass protests following Jennifer Laude’s brutal death and the high profile attempts by the United States military to circumvent the Philippine legal infrastructure on behalf of her murderer, Pemberton, are a reminder that the Filipino people, including Filipinos in the United States, must continue to fight tyranny, its foreign backers, and vile policies that allow for US occupation like the VFA.”

 

During the screenings, GABRIELA USA chapters held panel discussions to reflect on the film, Jennifer’s life, and justice for her murder as it relates to the roles the US government and Duterte’s dictatorship play in perpetuating violence in the Philippines.

Community Screening in New York City followed by panel discussion with director, PJ Raval
“It hurts still to think about Jennifer Laude, the rage and thought that she and many other Jennifers aren’t coming back to us,” said Jill Mangaliman, Gabriela Seattle member, after watching Call Her Ganda at the GABRIELA USA community screening. “We remember her murder at the hands of U.S corporal Scott Pemberton, her death which galvanized a movement for justice, for Trans rights, and to end the VFA and all forms of US imperialism in the Philippines. My heart breaks every time i see your face, sister Jennifer, but I remain determined.”
Community Screening in San Francisco

GABRIELA USA will continue to sponsor Call Her Ganda screenings and community forums nationwide to commemorate Jennifer Laude and demand for her justice. We invite our community to join us in fighting for Jennifer.

Upcoming screening includes:

October 17, Washington D.C. with Director, PJ Raval

November 20, Portland, Oregon on Trans Day of Resilience/Remembrance

GABRIELA USA says #BelieveSurvivors and RISE, RESIST and UNITE against Macho-Fascists Duterte, Trump, and Kavanaugh!

For Immediate Release
September 28, 2018
Reference: Irma Shauf-Bajar, Chairperson, gabrielawomen@gmail.com

GABRIELA USA says #BelieveSurvivors and RISE, RESIST and UNITE against Macho-Fascists Duterte, Trump, and Kavanaugh!

 

GABRIELA USA is in solidarity with survivors speaking out against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. This week Dr. Christine Blasey Ford faces the accused Supreme Court nominee Kavanaugh to testify under oath before the Senate Judiciary Committee of the United States. Kavanaugh faces allegations of sexual misconduct including accusations of attempted rape and repeated sexual assault. As Filipino women with the most anti-women and macho-fascist president in Philippine History, we unite against macho-fascism through the #BabaeAko #LalabanAko (tagalog for I Am Woman, I Will Fight) campaign. We support all oppressed women and their communities who resist the continuing macho-fascist regimes of Duterte and Trump, which includes their cronies who allow their anti-people, anti-women, and fascist policies to continue. We urge women and all people to RISE, RESIST, and UNITE against macho-fascists Duterte and Trump, and against those like Kavanaugh who serve to uphold the macho-fascists in power.  

 

GABRIELA Washington, D.C. Resists Duterte’s Machismo-Fascist Dictatorship! Never Again, Never Again, Never Again to Martial Law!

For Immediate Release:
September 25, 2018
GABRIELA Washington, D.C. Resists Duterte’s Machismo-Fascist Dictatorship! Never Again, Never Again, Never Again to Martial Law!
Contact: Ayah Manalastas, General-Secretary, ayah@gabrieladc.org

In remembering Martial Law under Marcos’ regime, GABRIELA Washington, D.C. remembers the role of women in the struggle for national democracy. During Marcos’ regime, women were arrested, tortured, and killed, especially student activists, peasant women, urban poor women, and women who chose to rise against fascism and tyranny. Today women in the Philippines and in the U.S. continue to rise, resist, and unite against Duterte’s fascist dictatorship.

Under his current regime women’s political, social, economic, and cultural rights have consistently been violated and women remain under attack. In the countryside women farmers and their families fear losing their lands, which are being threatened by state military that are supported by U.S. military assistance to the Philippines. In the urban area, women workers with the Nagkakaisang Manggagawa ng Nutriasia Marilao experienced violent dispersals as the company’s management is backed by Philippine National police (PNP). Women have also lost their children and spouses in the Duterte’s War on Drugs, or Oplan Tokhang. Additionally, with the high inflation in the economy and the increase of prices of basic commodities, women and families are feeling the burden of the tax reform, or TRAIN, laws being implemented under Duterte. These are some of the overall impacts of Duterte’s repressive regime on women.

Duterte’s ongoing remarks regarding women, especially his recent jokes about rape, continue to dehumanize women. As quoted in the recent New York Time article he stated, “They said there are many rape cases in Davao,” the president said. “As long as there are many beautiful women, there will be more rape cases.” These remarks are blatant attacks on our women, and further create a culture of impunity and excuse perpetrators committing such crimes, and only to encourage violence against women. Duterte has only put more women in danger with his remarks and attitude, because they further reinforce a feudal-patriarchal culture in Philippine society. When attacks on women become part of mainstream life, it affirms systemic oppression of women and children, making us and our communities more vulnerable to exploitation and abuse in our home country and abroad.

With these conditions and attacks and as GABRIELA women, we say ENOUGH IS ENOUGH! We stand with MALAYA Movement and our communities represented here today in Washington, D.C. to resist and bring down this repressive, macho-fascist regime! We affirm our commitment to organize and mobilize for national democracy, and true liberation of our women, of all Filipinos, and our motherland.

GABRIELA USA Calls for Urgent Relief Aid for Survivors of Typhoon Mangkhut

GABRIELA USA calls on community support and stands ready to coordinate relief efforts for the victims of Typhoon Mangkhut (Ompong) in the Philippines. Super Typhoon Mangkhut made landfall as a super typhoon in the Philippines on September 15, drenching the country’s main northern island of Luzon.

 

At least 95 people have died and more than 4 million Filipinos have been affected, half of whom are children. Many are still missing from a devastating landslide, and the death toll will only continue to rise.

 

GABRIELA-USA turns to our community members and organizations in the U.S. for support in providing relief to displaced families in the Philippines. Our reliable and reputable partner organizations have long-standing history in serving the communities mostly affected by disasters, both natural and those aggravated by government plunder. During this heightened macho-fascist regime of Duterte, we rely on our networks of community health workers, social workers, organizers and volunteers to provide swift response to the needs of Filipinos in the Northern Philippines.   

 

How to Donate:

To ensure aid reaches the Philippines as fast as possible, GABRIELA USA is collecting and remitting monetary donations in partnership with Lingap GABRIELA, the relief project of GABRIELA Philippines. Your donations will go quickly and directly to the communities adversely affected by the typhoon.  

 

You can send monetary donations to GABRIELA USA the following ways (with note, “Typhoon Mangkhut Relief donation”):

  • Venmo @gabrielausa
  • To your local GABRIELA organization and chapter organizing committees
  • By check, payable to GABRIELA USA, mail to Precious Arney, 1033 S. 112th Street, Burien, WA 98168

 

Maraming Salamat in your continued support and rebuilding of Filipino Communities in Northern Luzon.

Filipino American Women Outraged by the Removal of ‘ Comfort Women’ Statue in the Philippines

For Immediate Release

April 30, 2018

Contact: Irma Shauf-Bajar, National Chairperson, gabrielawomen@gmail.com

 

Filipino American Women Outraged by the Removal of ‘ Comfort Women’ Statue in the Philippines

 

Like a thief in the night, the Philippine government insidiously dismantled and covertly removed a bronze statue facing Manila Bay on Roxas Boulevard, effectively removing one of the rare monuments that symbolized and honored the Filipino WWII “Comfort Women,” affectionately called “Lolas.” More than 400,000 women and girls across the Pacific, from Korea, China, Indonesia, and the Philippines, were forced into sex camps and violently made to serve as sex slaves for the Japanese Imperial Army during WWII.

 

GABRIELA USA strongly condemns the removal of the “Comfort Woman” statue, a memorial that was established due to the hard-fought struggle of women’s rights advocates, historians, and activists. The Philippine government workers claimed in Kyodo News that the memorial was removed so that pipes could be laid underground and claimed that they would return the monument afterward, which is dubious considering the government did not inform any of the stakeholders of the statue’s removal. And yet, according to the Japanese Embassy in Manila, the Philippine government had notified the embassy of its intention to remove the statue that was erected in December 2017. The embassy had protested the statue and demanded it be taken down since its erection, and Foreign Affairs Secretary, Alan Cayetano, said in The Japan Times: “The Philippines cannot strengthen its relationship with Japan if it keeps inflaming a matter that is considered ‘settled.'” This response from Cayetano is factually false and incorrect on all accounts: to this day, the Japanese government has not sincerely or legally issued an official apology to the “Comfort Women,” and the Lolas of the Philippines never received official reparations for their suffering during WWII.

 

Below is a testament from a GABRIELA Oakland member, Melissa R. Sipin:

 

When I visited the moving monument last month in March, I was taken by the statue’s representation of Filipina strength and resilience. The seven-feet bronze sculpture depicted a blindfolded woman in Maria Clara traditional Filipiniana gown in mourning. And yet, standing against the Manila Bay with her head held high, facing the city toward the Japanese Embassy down the road, her strength and resilience was embodied in her fierce stance.

 

The inscription beneath her read: “This monument is a reminder of the Filipino women who were victims of abuses during the occupation of the Japanese forces from 1942-1945. It took a while before they came out into the open to tell their stories.”

 

One of those women, the wife of Major Diego Sipin of the joint Philippine-American army in Northern Luzon, was my own paternal grandmother, my adoptive mother. My grandmother and her sister were held against their own wills in a garrison in Agoo, La Union, where the war first broke out in the Philippines on the Lingayen Gulf. My grandmother was held over six months and gave birth in captivity. She unfortunately died with this secret, and I did not learn of her suffering until her funeral, when my grand aunts came forward during the processional and professed what happened to her and their other sister, who also passed away without ever receiving compensation from the Japanese government.

 

The Philippine government’s removal of the Comfort Woman statue without informing any of the the human rights groups who have fought valiantly to defend the Lolas’ dignity and right to justice, reiterates their complete erasure of what happened to the “Comfort Women” and what happens to countless women during times of war and conflict. Members of GABRIELA USA condemn this violent erasure and constant attack against women and our human rights.

 

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FILIPINO WOMEN RISE, RESIST, and UNITE IN HONOR OF WORKING WOMEN

For Immediate Release

March 8, 2018

Contact: Irma Shauf-Bajar, National Chairperson, gabrielawomen@gmail.com

 

FILIPINO WOMEN RISE, RESIST, and UNITE IN HONOR OF WORKING WOMEN

On the 110th Anniversary of International Working Women’s Day, GABRIELA USA honors the working women of the world. We recognize the impact and effort of working women who sacrifice daily for their families, their children, and for themselves to survive in a system that continually exploits and oppresses working women of color and TGNC people. In the Philippines’ semi-feudal and semi-colonial society and culture that inherits these ideals, Filipino women are made to exist as secondary. Filipino women are bound twice in a nation struggling for freedom, from the cities to the countryside in the Philippines and abroad, Filipino women are unbound as they commit themselves to the struggle and RISE against fascism, RESIST militarization and UNITE for self-determination.

 It is clear the U.S.-Duterte regime is the enemy of the people, as it upholds the system that continues to deepen the suffering of the Filipino people, women and children. It is macho-fascist President Duterte and imperialist puppeteer U.S. President Trump, whose orders and actions have revealed their insidious anti-women, anti-people policies. We cannot accept a future dictated by the U.S.-Duterte regime and must resist their macho-fascist attacks on the people.

GABRIELA USA recognizes the Amazonas, women freedom fighters, who have rejected the system given and who sacrifice their lives daily to fight and build a society of a new-type. We recognize the OFWs, Overseas Filipino Workers, a majority of whom are Filipino women who sacrifice seeing their families and children grow because they are pushed overseas to survive. We recognize the Filipino women, TGNC people, and those in solidarity who have decided to be on the people’s side of history and answer the call to RISE against fascism, RESIST militarization and UNITE for self-determination.

MAPAGPALAYANG PANDAIGDIGANG ARAW NG MGA KABABAIHAN!


RISE against fascism, RESIST militarization, UNITE for self-determination

Abante, Babae! Palaban Militante!

###

Filipino Women Resist President Duterte’s Fascist Regime

For Immediate Release
February 25, 2018
Contact: Irma Shauf-Bajar, National Chairperson, gabrielawomen@gmail.com

Filipino Women Resist President Duterte’s Fascist Regime

Today, February 25, 2018 marks the 32nd Anniversary of the EDSA People Power movement and the end of Ferdinand Marcos’s 21 years as president and dictator of the Philippines. Like Marcos, President Duterte has taken the bloody road in an attempt to impose a full dictatorship over the country, which promises more repression and killings on top of the already 14,000 people killed by his regime. GABRIELA USA stands with the Filipino people and the rapidly growing international community who demand for Duterte to stop the killings and never again to dictatorship in the Philippines!

Last week, members of GABRIELA New York and church workers were in General Santos City in Mindanao as part of an international solidarity fact-finding mission delegation. They were observing a psychosocial intervention program implemented by GABRIELA Philippines, where they are currently serving T’boli-Manobo communities who were victims of a massacre allegedly committed by military elements. The delegation was stopped at five Philippine military checkpoints and prevented from completing their scheduled activities due to the confiscation of their passports and being detained at the immigration office. There was no just cause for the detention of the delegation.

“The U.S.-Duterte regime is engaging in tactics to cover up and prevent the public from witnessing the heightened militarization and all-out war against the Filipino people. It is our duty to continue to expose and condemn the Philippine military’s ongoing human rights violations and abuses,” said Irma Shauf-Bajar, Chairperson of GABRIELA USA. “We stand with the Filipino people, our sisters and the international community in resisting militarization and demanding an end to this fascist dictatorship!”

Since U.S. President Donald Trump’s visit to the Philippines in November 2017, state-sanctioned violence against indigenous people, workers, peasants, and human rights defenders has sharply escalated.  GABRIELA USA views this as unsurprising, given that Trump’s visit led to deals which secured U.S.-led foreign domination of the country, including $14.3 million in U.S. military spending for Duterte’s armed forces. At the same time, U.S. military presence in the Philippines is expanding under the U.S. “counter-terror” Operation Pacific Eagle; we expect this to directly contribute to even more politically-motivated killings and repression. It is clearly the U.S.-Duterte regime that continues to attack the most vulnerable and marginalized communities with impunity – violating both the people and the nation’s sovereignty.

On this anniversary of the EDSA People Power Movement, let us continue to Rise, Resist and Unite against the fascist U.S.-Duterte regime. We urge you to join MALAYA: U.S. Movement Against Killings and Dictatorship, and for Democracy in the Philippines. Please sign this  PETITION  to demand to Stop the Killings and prevent a new dictatorship in the Philippines and share it widely.