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Embrace Dignity and our allies had a successful Freedom March to Parliament on 27 April in SA

Categories: ALL THE NEWS , Safety & Security, Women Empowerment
A petition and memorandum was presented to President Jacob Zuma to demand freedom of those enslaved through prostitution and sex trafficking.

The theme for our march, #NoFreeChoiceMeansNoFreedom is echoed in the words of former President Nelson Mandela when he said: “As long as many of our people still live in utter poverty, as long as children still live under plastic covers, as long as many of our people are still without jobs, no South African should rest and wallow in the joy of freedom”. Mandela knew that to be free did not merely translate to casting off one’s own chains, “but [entails living] in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others”.

Through our work, we have come to realise that advocating for law reform is a lot like taking a long journey – there are many rivers to cross, hills and mountains to climb, and obstacles and hoops to jump over. The struggle to end one of the most resilient forms of oppression of women can be lonely and disheartening and this is why we value the coalitions and alliances that we have forged on this journey over the years.

The CAP (Coalition for the Abolition of Prostitution) International Congress held in New Delhi, India, provided an opportunity for myself and three other staff members from Embrace Dignity – Pumla Qambela, Grizelda Grootboom, and volunteer Morven Magari from the United Kingdom – to once again make new connections, share experiences, learn, strategise, and reinvigorate ourselves for the journey ahead. We were particularly encouraged by the presence of youth and trade union leaders who are as committed as we are to ending prostitution, the world’s oldest form of oppression of women.

The Congress also allowed us to plan and coordinate our activities for the United Nations’ Commission on the Status of Women, which would be held a month later in New York in the United States. Mickey Meji, Grootboom and I attended this event, where we once again flew the flag on behalf of Embrace Dignity.

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