Tomorrow, on Wednesday, March 8th, a calendar date held for International Women’s Day (in which 40 countries will officially participate), American women will go on strike. The goal of A Day Without a Woman is to show the economic strength of women, explains Janaye Ingram and Tabitha St. Bernard, both part of the Women’s March on Washington, who are organizing this strike.
These two, along with the rest of the movement, encourage women to do three things:
Strike. This includes paid and unpaid work. “For those women able to participate in the strike, we ask that they stand together in community on their day off, whether that means taking part in literal community service or having conversations that help spread the word of this movement forward,” said Janaye.
Wear red. Not all women will be able to strike for a variety of reasons. For those who cannot, wearing red allows supporters to make a statement and stand in solidarity. “The color red is associated with the labor movement throughout history,” Tabitha explains. “Red symbolizes love and compassion and has been used in the past to show strength in community.” It doesn’t have to be over-the-top, either. If your job requires a uniform or conservative attire, red clothing may not be an option. A red ribbon pinned to your lapel works just as well.
Abstain from shopping. If you do shop, try to choose small, women- and minority-owned businesses.
As for men, Janaye and Tabitha encourage men to lean into helping women. “Don’t strike, but seek out law and decision makers in your community and advocate for women in areas like paid family leave, affordable childcare and pay equity.”
“The value of women is such that a day without them will create such the feeling that a key component is missing. Women are leaders, they give birth. Women are vital and central to communities — local, nationally, globally. We see this as a way to make others see us as we are,” say the two organizers.
“This is shaping up to be a global movement, one that hopefully sets the stage for more in future. Striking elevates the issue at hand and creates a moment for conversation. It is critically important to create more conversation. It’s an opportunity to provide insight into why we’re striking, and hopefully it will create more educated advocates in this space when they realize the challenges women face when it comes to equity.”
Photo by Richard Rutledge/Condé Nast via Getty Images.