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Wash Journal   Fairfield Ledger
Neighbors Growing Together | Feb 23, 2018

Women’s march planned for legislative briefing

Jan 17, 2018

By David Hotle, Golden Triangle News Service

 

WASHINGTON — When local legislators attend the first of three legislative briefings Saturday morning at the Washington County Courthouse, local organizers are hoping to make it the local part of an international march for gender balance.

Organizer Carol Ray recalls January 2017 when the first national Women’s March was held shortly after President Donald Trump’s election to protest gender inequality. On the anniversary of the march this weekend, a second march is being planned nationally with the headquarters in Las Vegas, Nevada. This anniversary event will kickoff a national voter registration and mobilization tour targeting swing states to register new voters, engage impacted communities, harness collective energy to advocate for policies and candidates that reflect the organization’s values and collaborate with partners to elect more women and progressive candidates to office.

“Last year when people were marching a couple of us talked about doing something here, but there wasn’t a lot of response,” Ray said. “When it came around again, and we saw that the march had taken place on all but one continent — there was even one in Antarctica — so June Henderson and I had been talking and we thought to see what we could organize. As we started thinking about it, we realized it would coincide with the legislative briefing Saturday so we decided to start there and just be there. After that, we would march for a while and make our presence known as women who disagree with some of the things the government is doing.”

The legislative briefing is scheduled for 10 a.m. to noon Saturday in the courthouse’s third floor courtroom. Representatives Jarad Klein and David Heaton and Senators Rich Taylor and Kevin Kinney are expected to attend.

The Women’s March was a worldwide protest on January 21, 2017, to advocate legislation and policies regarding human rights and other issues, including women’s rights, immigration reform, health care reform, reproductive rights, the natural environment, LGBTQ rights, racial equality, freedom of religion, and workers’ rights. Most of the rallies were aimed at Donald Trump, immediately following his inauguration as President of the United States, largely due to statements that he had made and positions that he had taken which were regarded by many as anti-women or otherwise offensive. It was the largest single-day protest in U.S. history. The Washington March drew 440,000 to 500,000 people. Between 3,267,134 and 5,246,670 people participated in the Women’s March in the United States. In total, worldwide participation has been estimated at over 5 million.

“It’s a message of resistance to Donald Trump’s policies and what has been going on in Washington which is reprehensible to lots of women,” Ray said. “Even though this is a red state, there are lots of us here who disagree with that and we agree with Martin Luther King in that if you don’t speak up about things that are going on then you are just as guilty as people who are perpetrating these things.”

Ray said men are welcome to march during the event. She said there is no way to tell how many people will attend to march. She said there is an event for the march created on Facebook to give people more information about the march. She also said certain people have been contacted to march.

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