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Women are first waste material, says Pope Francis

ROME – Women are the first waste material in much of today’s world, Pope Francis said Saturday, denouncing what he called a “scourge”.

“Every person’s dignity and fundamental rights must be respected: education, work, freedom of expression, and so on.

This is especially true for women, because they are more easily subjected to violence and abuse. The woman is the first waste material. We cannot remain silent in the face of this scourge of our time”, said the Argentine pontiff, who marks 10 years as pope on Monday.

“The woman is used,” he stressed.

“They pay you less because you are a woman. Then if they see you pregnant they take your job away. It is a custom that is used in big cities, for example with maternity.

“It is a scourge. Let us not leave women victims of abuse, exploitation, marginalisation and undue pressure without a voice! Let us be the voice of their pain and strongly denounce the injustices to which they are subjected, often in contexts that deprive them of any possibility of defence and redemption”. (ANSA)

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