This is Eve.
Let me begin by sharing my deepest gratitude, admiration, and respect for every single one of you who rose and danced with OBR in 207 countries, making it the biggest global action in the history of the world.
It was an extraordinary thing and we are only just beginning to see the fruits of this blossoming.
I want to introduce you to Monique Wilson – an extraordinary V-Day activist for 15 years. She literally got all 7,000 islands in the Philippines to rise and dance. She has graciously agreed to be the world coordinator, director, facilitator, activator for One Billion Rising.
Hi, this is Monique, I am so excited to be part of the V-Day team, and in such profound awe and admiration of all the coordinators, organizers and risers of OBR 2013. The unprecedented diversity, the creative energy, and the grassroots groups and communities at the forefront of actions across the globe were incredibly moving and radically inspiring.
Many of you wrote to tell us that you wanted this year to go further, to go deeper, to create more concrete actions. You wanted to address impunity and the lack of accountability as significant factors in the perpetuation of violence against women. You shared with us the need to create and uphold laws, the need to ensure that judgments made in courts hold.
You wrote to address the importance of rehabilitating prisoners with humanity and dignity so that degradation and humiliation do not lead to more violence. You wrote to say that ending patriarchy through education and through the creation of an active vision of a social justice was a priority in your communities. You expressed the urgency to see a form of justice that can transform mindsets.
So today, we are thrilled to launch ONE BILLION RISING FOR JUSTICE 2014.
What is the campaign about?
ONE BILLION RISING FOR JUSTICE is a global call to women survivors of violence and those who love them to come together in community and solidarity outside places where they are entitled to justice.
It is a call to survivors to break the silence and release the stories of both pain and hope – through art, dance, marches, ritual, song, spoken word, testimonies and whatever way best expresses their outrage, their need, their desire, and their joy. The path to justice begins with acknowledging and recognizing the violence – letting it be known.
This year we will RISE, RELEASE AND DANCE.
Gather in your communities and learn about its particular violence against women issues, including exploring what its root causes are.
Be in discussion in your communities about what justice means to you in your context.
Speak your story out loud for the first time and be heard.
Prosecute governments responsible for violence against women and demand reparations and apologies.
Hold colleges accountable for not prosecuting rapists on campuses.
Demand more humane working conditions, and protest against corporate greed that keeps women in poverty and subject to economic violence.
Shame and blame religious institutions for childhood sexual abuse, or for being obstacles to women’s rights.
Learn about justice by studying the roots of patriarchy.
Focus on mining, militarization and trafficking, all of which instigate violence towards women.
Organize women’s courts and flash courts outside courtrooms….
THE LIST IS ENDLESS. GROW IT WITH US
Where: On February 14, gather outside the places where you are entitled to justice – colleges, schools, police stations, local governments, courtrooms, places of worship, military courts, embassies, your work places, your homes….
Each community will find and determine the various forms of release. It can be creative, political, outrageous, audacious, bold ideas that fuse creative energy with political action. Make public or anonymous testimonies, beat drums, bring perpetrators to justice, create art, songs, poems out of survival stories, create rituals, march, make theater, burn effigies, wail, scream, do silent vigils, fast, celebrate justice that has been served. Honor grassroots women leaders who have devoted their lives to women.
And when that is done, DANCE and DANCE AND DANCE.
Dance is both a personal and collective action – the purest and most powerful expression of art and activism. Last year DANCE released a joyful and radical energy and reminded us that there is a mystical, feminine energy about to be born fully into the world.
Now is the time. On February 14, Rise, Release, Dance for Justice.
Love and Solidarity,
Eve and Monique
Eve Ensler, V-Day Founder
Monique Wilson, One Billion Rising Director