UGent’s Women’s Strike 2020

9 March 2020 12:00-14:00
Rectorate UGent – Sint Pietersnieuwstraat 25


*Campaign poster by Noëmi Willemen*

Every day our colleagues from the cleaning services and student restaurants make sure that UGent staff and students can work and study in clean offices and classrooms and with a full stomach. Too often they have to do this care work in difficult and precarious conditions and at low wages. This is why they are going on strike on Monday the 9th of March, inspired by the International Women’s Strike that calls for better conditions for women’s paid and unpaid care work. UGent Women’s Strike and ACOD UGent are in full solidarity with the staff on strike.

What do we want?

  1. insourcing of the cleaners so they are better protected as UGent staff.
  2. statutarisation of staff in the student restaurants and child care services for better protection in case of illness and better pension rights.
  3. living wage of 14 euro per hour so all UGent staff can live and work in dignity.

What can you do?

Join us on Monday, 9 March from 12:00 onwards to support the striking care workers. We will set up a long lunch table with soup, bread and plenty of roses served by your favorite professor, live music with the best feminist tunes, and a lot of feminist power. Afterwards, the Dutch feminist Anja Meulenbelt will give a lecture (in Dutch).

Solidarity Fund

To finance our activities and to support our colleagues who are on strike, we need your solidarity. The money of the crowdfunding will be used to create a solidarity fund to compensate our colleagues from the cleaning, cafeterias and child care for the day they went on strike. Will you help us to fight for a university where everyone has equal rights?

Activity 1: Film Screening

Film Benefit to raise money for the solidarity fund that we have created to compensate our colleagues from the cleaning, cafeterias and child care for the day they will go on strike.

Where? Filmzaal UGent, Paddenhoek 3, 9000 Gent
When? 26.02.2020 – 18:30
Any amount of support is appreciated!

Two films will be screened:

  • Limpiadores (2015), a documentary by Fernando L. González Mitjáns (40m, Spanish with English subtitles). The film captures the life and struggles of the invisible migrant workers that make sure offices and classrooms are clean and tidy before professors and students arrive at their morning classes at some of London’s most prestigious universities.
  • Bread and Roses (2000), a film by Ken Loach (1h52m, English with Dutch subtitles). The plot deals with the struggle of poorly paid janitorial workers in Los Angeles and their fight for better working conditions and the right to unionize. It is based on the ‘Justice for Janitors’ campaign of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU).For more information, see Facebook-event

Activity 2: Lecture by Anja Meulenbelt

Where? Jozef Plateauzaal/Aud.P; Plateaustraat 22, 9000 Gent
When? 9 March 2020 – 15:00

Anja Meulenbelt, the Dutch feminist icon and author of ‘Feminsime. Terug van nooit weggeweest (2017) and ‘Brood & Rozen. Over klasse en identiteit’ (2019), will give a talk at the Women’s Strike UGent about the need for a feminism that focuses on care as the key to a just society for everyone. She advocates a revaluation of care work: reproductive labour that is vital on the one hand, but is un- or underpaid on the other hand, and still falls largely on women and people with a migration background. The lecture will be in Dutch.