Today on International Women’s Day, our students went out to pay tribute to women that have been totally marginalized in many societies worldwide: female day laborers. Long hours spent waiting to pick up gigs, day to day, as a long-term livelihood, with wages falling well short of what is required to cover basic needs, though most are primary income earners for their families. They often clean houses, but sometimes end up on construction sites or in factories – whatever the day brings. On top of that female day laborers often suffer verbal and physical abuse and outright humiliation.
These women deserve better. That is why our students visited the Marrakchi female day laborers who congregate every day on the corner next to the flower market. Our students came smiling and carrying home made cakes and orange juice – and their books on labour law.
The ‘women of the moqif’ as female day laborers are called in Morocco, (moqif meaning market of the standing), were delighted with this unexpected attention. “We were just saying to each other this morning: no one will think about us today. And suddenly you girls come around. You make us very happy. Bless you.”