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SAW Statement on Ending Violence against Palestinians

The Society for the Anthropology of Work joins workers and anthropologists around the world calling for an end to genocide, apartheid, settler violence, and displacement against Palestinians.

Published onNov 08, 2023
SAW Statement on Ending Violence against Palestinians
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SAW Statement on Ending Violence against Palestinians

The Society for the Anthropology of Work joins workers and anthropologists around the world calling for an end to genocide, apartheid, settler violence, and displacement against Palestinians. We recognize the trauma already borne by Jewish, Muslim, Christian, Israeli, and Palestinian peoples, and we reject violence, disregard of humanity, and securitization as viable paths to liberation and justice. We urge anthropologists and scholars of work to call for an end to the state-sponsored siege of Gaza and to recognize and affirm the freedom of Palestinians to live without fear of death, displacement, violence, and harm.

As a section committed to worker justice, SAW aligns with global workers’ calls for ending this violence and challenging the systemic and concrete ways this occupation enters diverse workplaces. 

Workers have exerted their power as producers to make themselves heard. Workers in Palestine have been organizing with UAW and other global trade unions to highlight the importance of workers' rights in Palestine and in Israel. “The labor movement must support the human rights of all people: safety, housing, employment, education,” writes the Executive Board of UAW 2865 (University of California). In this spirit,” they continue, “we condemn evictions, occupation, and military aggression, and we stand with those fighting for peace, freedom, and equality.” UAW Local 2710 (Columbia University) also calls for an end to punishment for supporting Palestinian liberation. Sex Workers’ Union UK writes “as sex workers, we stand against the violence of borders, imperial and colonial violence, and all state sanctioned violence against oppressed and marginalised people.” Mining Workers in Colombia represented by Sintracarbon call the government to “suspend the shipment of Colombian coal, or any other metal or mineral to Israel” in support of the violence (english | español). Labour 4 Palestine (https://twitter.com/PalestineLabour) is based in Canada as is Labour Against Arms Trade (https://twitter.com/LAATCanada) and currently protesting in Toronto at one of the largest suppliers of armed vehicles (INKAS). Likewise, Belgian unions have refused to handle arms shipments for the Israel-Hamas conflict, citing that loading and unloading such shipments “means supporting regimes that kill innocent people.”

As a section committed to supporting worker organizing globally, we express our support for anti-imperial and anti-settler organizers and their calls to dismantle borders and state formations that perpetuate racialized settler and migrant violence. We also reaffirm our journal’s (Anthropology of Work Review) aims and scope to support scholarship that “challenge[s] hegemonies of work, linked as they are to historical and contemporary forms of patriarchy, racism, fascism, and colonialism.” 

We endorse the October 16 statement put forth by the boards of the Middle East Section (MES) of the American Anthropological Association, the Association for Middle East Anthropologists (AMEA) of the Middle East Studies Association, and the Society for Medical Anthropology (SMA) and extend our solidarity to sections in the AAA that are committed to workers’ justice, education, and advocacy of teacher-scholars about this ongoing and historical violence. Echoing the American Anthropological Association’s October 30th statement, we call for the honoring of human rights, academic freedom, dignity and protections from harm.


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