In January, women from around the world joined together in what became the largest single-day inauguration demonstration in American history. According to one estimate, more than 3.7 million people — that's 1 in every 100 Americans — participated in one of the demonstrations that took place in more than 500 cities throughout the U.S. Participants marched for reproductive rights, immigration reform, environmental issues, LGBTQ rights and equal pay.
After the march, many women were left wondering how they could keep the spirit of the movement alive beyond that single day. On March 8, women will join together again, but this time it will be to demonstrate their role in the global economy — by removing themselves from it entirely.
Dubbed "A Day Without A Woman," it's no coincidence that the women's strike is being held on the same day as International Women's Day. Strike organizers are asking women to skip work (if they can do so without losing their jobs), avoid shopping (except at small, local businesses) and leave the household chores and childcare to the men. Strikers and anyone else wishing to show solidarity with the cause are encouraged to wear red for the day.
From the Women's March website:
When millions of us stood together in January, we saw clearly that our army of love greatly outnumbers that of fear, greed and hatred. Let's raise our voices together again, to say that women’s rights are human rights, regardless of a woman’s race, ethnicity, religion, immigration status, sexual identity, gender expression, economic status, age or disability.
This isn't the first time that women have gone on strike to demonstrate their role in the global economy. In 1975, 90 percent of the women in Iceland went on strike, refusing to do work — paid or unpaid. The result? Just five years later, Iceland elected its first female president, Vigdis Finnbogadottir. With that election, Finnbogadottir also became the first democratically elected female leader of any country in the world. Finnbogadottir held the office of Iceland's president for the next 16 years.