For Immediate Release

May 1, 2014

Reference: Valerie Francisco, Chairperson, GABRIELA USA,

Obama’s TPPA: The Profit Over People Agreement

Filipino Women Resist the TPPA on May Day

Today, Filipino migrant and working women will flood the streets with their families for May 1st International Workers’ Day, to voice their disgust and condemnation for the deplorable state of the lives of poor and working class families in the U.S. Joining the ranks of other migrant and marginalized communities, members of GABRIELA USA have had enough with Obama’s blatant disregard for the needs of hard working families, and his obvious role in lining the pockets of big global corporations.

President Barack Obama recently returned from his tour around the Asia-Pacific to promote the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA), a “free trade” agreement promising economic growth and development, and the creation of jobs. In reality, the TPPA would give one hundred percent ownership of land and businesses in countries like the Philippines, South Korea, China, Indonesia, and Latin America to the corporate “partners” behind the agreement. President Noynoy Aquino rolled out the red carpet and bent over backwards to welcome Obama to the Philippines during the TPPA tour, a predictable move for a puppet serving his master.

On April 28th, before President Obama’s arrival in the Philippines, Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin and U.S. Ambassador Philip Goldberg signed the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA), circumventing the ban on foreign military bases and troops by the Philippine constitution, and allows the U.S. to increase presence of its troops and military bases in the Philippines. As the Aquino administration relinquishes ALL rights to Philippine land over to the U.S., chronic poverty and widespread unemployment will only increase and will continue to plague the Filipino people, forcing them to desperately find livelihood by migrating out of the country. Many fall victim to fraud, exploitation, and abuse, and an overwhelming number of them are women.

In the U.S., the TPPA negotiations were largely kept from the general public, although the rights of working class and migrant communities would be heavily impacted. With trade relations largely shifting in the Asia Pacific, criminalization of poor and immigrant communities continue to increase in the U.S., as ICE raids run rampant and the use of immigration detention centers increases. Migrants are denied basic labor rights and access to social services while forced to work long hours in exploitative conditions for low wages.

Speaking on behalf of the organization’s sixty members, most of whom are survivors of human trafficking, Jo Quiambao of GABRIELA Washington D.C. states “When presidents prioritize the interests of corporations over the human rights of their citizens, there is no bright future for any of us unless we fight for it! This is the reason why we must build solidarity across countries and communities with other workers and marginalized people!”

The TPPA and EDCA are a betrayal to people of the U.S., the Philippines and Asia Pacific. This May first, Filipino women will expose these presidents for what they truly are: enemies of the working class.

We are Women Workers, We are Not Slaves!

Justice for Filipino Trafficked Teachers!

Stop State Violence Against Immigrants!

Stop the Deportations! Legalization Now!

No to Obama’s TPPA = The Profit over People Agreement!  

US Troops out of the Philippines and Asia NOW! Junk EDCA!


GABRIELA USA May Day Mobilizations Throughout the U.S.

Los Angeles, CA

Southern California Immigration Coalition (SCIC)

BAYAN USA Mobilization @ 4pm

Meeting point: Broadway & Olympic

End point: Federal Building

New York, NY

May 1st Coalition Action

Rally in Union Square @ 12pm

Meet @ Southeast Corner of the Park

5:30pm March

Oakland, CA

Oakland Sin Fronteras Coalition

Fruitvale Plaza @ 3:30pm

International Blvd (at 35th Ave)

Oakland, CA

Seattle, WA

May Day March for Workers and Immigrant Rights

Meet at 20th Ave S. and Jackson St. in front of the old Hidmo @ 2:30PM