March 8: Call for action on International Women’s Day

 Marking the one year anniversary of fire at the Hogar Seguro Virgen de Asuncion in Guatemala

This International Women’s Day, March 8th, we invite you to take part in a network wide action focused on gender justice in Guatemala. It will be the 1 year anniversary of a fire at the state-run centre for youth in Guatemala, the Hogar Seguro Virgen de Asuncion, in which 41 girls were killed and many others seriously injured. Join us to remember the lives that were lost and to demand justice.

Long before the fire, reports of abuse and mistreatment at the centre were public and had been brought to the attention of Guatemalan authorities. On the tragic day last year, the girls were being held in a locked room when the fire broke out. Their calls to be let out were ignored by police for some time. Several state officials have been arrested on charges such as negligence and child abuse, and there have also been calls to investigate the Guatemalan president for his role. The case devastated the country and prompted massive demonstrations.

We encourage both local committees and members at large to organize or engage in solidarity actions, online and/or in person. If there are already International Women’s Day events happening in your community, for instance, we encourage you to make connections to the Hogar Seguro case.

Join us on March 8th to:

  • echo calls for justice for the 41 girls killed, as well as for the survivors recovering from mental and physical injuries. Survivors are not currently receiving any support from the government and it is imperative that the state supports them in healing.

  • demand that the Canadian government, which has adopted a “Feminist International Assistance Policy,” 1) denounce the role of the Guatemalan government in the incidents and 2) pressure the Public Prosecutor to advance these cases, so that they don’t remain in impunity.

We’ll be sharing more information, including suggestions for online actions, as well as a fact sheet about the case soon. Please get in contact (BTSMaritimesCoordinator (at) gmail.com) to let us know if you’re planning something.

For now, check out these links for more info:

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