Refuge for Cuban Communicators Casa Lever: 'The State must understand that we are not alone' '

Refuge for Cuban Communicators Casa Lever: 'The State must understand that we are not alone' '

Refuge for Cuban Communicators Casa Lever: 'The State must understand that we are not alone' '

Days ago, Diario de Cuba announced the launch, by Cuban journalists, of the Casa Pireca initiative, which aims to acquire a physical space that "serves as a workplace, refuge and leisure to women" linked to communication.Some readers might wonder why for women, if men journalists also suffer the harassment of the regime.On this and other issues, Diario de Cuba has asked them.

The art historian and member of the San Isidro Yanelys Núñez movement underlines that it is a specific project for specific problems.

"Although the persecution of the Cuban government against independent journalists is generalized, women - and that is why there are less in the sector - face specific problems and persecutions."

"We talk about a structural problem not only about Cuba but worldwide. What is the role of women within social relationships? Care, family protection. When developing their trade, in the midst of illegality andThe criminalization by the Cuban government to journalism, the woman has to look at other problems: the raising of a child, the care of a mother or a father, putting food on the table, "explains the activist, who in Cuba did not havehousing and had to exile in Spain for the persecution of the regime.

"If you add that the government threatens you to take custody (children), they are not threats that make men ...", he says and remember that the security of the State threatened the journalist of Diario de Cuba AdrianaZamora with losing her pregnancy.When she was in the hospital giving birth, political police officers pressed her friend who lent her and her husband's housing to throw them out.

"Women are attacked in specific ways and that is why we respond with a specific project for women in a totally insecure context," says Núñez.

It emphasizes that sexist violence is "in all spaces, intrafamily, and others that have nothing to do with state security."

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"Machismo in Cuba is in all places, as in the rest of the world."Therefore, space would be to protect independent communicators from any context of sexist violence.

On the possible consequences of making public the project, which include the possibility of attracting the attention of the regime, Núñez sees advantages in transparency.

"We decided to make it public because it is a way of being clearer with donors, who know what money and problems are going to invest. Also, because the situation of women is visible (...). Although althoughWe are in a context of total hostility, our greatest force is to deal with our truth: many journalists have nowhereIn the street with their children, without where to go. We have nothing to hide. Those who have much to hide and clean are them, "he says in reference to the Cuban regime.

The women involved in the initiative are also aware that the Cuban State could use legal mechanisms to strip them of the space they acquire, if they manage to gather the necessary funds.

"If they take away the house, under any subterfuge, any type of trap, it is also a result. Obviously, we want to be able to buy the house and inhabit it within the Cuban legality, because we will do everything within the legality. But if they remove itIt is also a result and would serve to demonstrate what some people, even within the political, traditional and no, doubt: that there is an important difference between being a journalist woman and being a journalist. This does not mean that any of the aggressions againstThe journalists we support them, "says the independent feminist and communicator Marta María Ramírez.

Ramírez clarifies that, although they have the support of feminist groups, Casa Lever is not an exclusive space for feminist women."We are not going to ask any woman who calls the lever space if she is a feminist or not."

"The Cuban State will also have to begin to recognize that we are supplying an absence of their mandate, which is to protect Cuban women."

To create the shelter, the initiative includes funds through the Spanish Micromeceneazgo Verkami platform.

Independent communicators, explains Ramírez, do not have access to any type of social security, maternity licenses or for taking care of sick children.

Given the fact that they are finding their own solutions, Ramírez hopes that the Cuban State "has the intelligence and decency to respect the decision of about twenty Cuban women, supported by social networks by another group of Cuban women, thanThey have also been demanding shelters for women in situations of violence. "

"We have told the State that we could do that crowdfunding to find the money and free them from their responsibility to find a house or build it," he says.

For Ramírez it is vital, in addition to the economic contribution of those who can give it, the dissemination of the initiative through the independent media, "so that the Cuban State understands that we are not so alone."

He knows that they will not be able to save all Cuban independent communicators, but he considers that it would be an important step that they can reach a space where to work calm or say "I need shoes for my creature" and be able to "mobilize to exercise sorority."

The initiative has already inspired other groups that are asking for support from Casa Lever."For example, trans women who are in street situations," explains Ramírez.

Elizabeth Valdés is an example of harassment suffered by Cubans who approach communication independently.Although she collaborates with the feminist magazine Alas Tenses, she does not consider himself a journalist, but an artist and activist for women's rights and against violence.

"In my case, being an independent artist and having had direct contacts with artists of the San Isidro Movement, they have summoned me, they have done research, they have made me interrogations. It is not only journalism."

"I think that Casa Lever can be a place of refuge, where we can find more safe solutions or roads to do a serious job, at least in my case, that I work these issues of violence against women in rural areas. It can beA safe space to discuss these issues and the situation in general. "

He considers that "you cannot trust the official press because it sells us a speech that is not what we are living daily" and that independent journalism, "with the seriousness and rigor that has been shown," is very necessary.

Therefore, he believes that he should be given "all possible visibility" to Casa Lever.