Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

A date for the Women’s General Strike has been set

rexfeatures_8012079f.jpg

The organisers of the Women’s March in the US have announced a date for a nationwide women’s strike.

The general strike, dubbed ‘A Day Without a Woman’, will take place on March 8 – International Women’s Day.

“We saw what happened when millions of us stood together in January, and we now know that our army of love greatly outnumbers the army of fear, greed and hatred,” wrote the Women’s March on Washington organisers on Instagram.

Specific details of the strike have yet to be released, but the team behind it has promised to share more information on how women can take part over the coming weeks.

It is believed that the action will be held in conjunction with 30 other feminist organisations around the world. However, it is not clear yet whether feminist activists in the UK will follow the lead of those in the US and organise their own general strike.


Read more: “I’m just getting started”: the protest t-shirts taking on Trump


In an open letter published in the Guardian last week, eight prominent feminist scholars and activists called for a day of “striking, marching, blocking roads, bridges and squares, abstaining from domestic, care and sex work, boycotting, calling out misogynistic politicians and companies, [and] striking in educational instititutions”.

Critiquing what they termed “lean-in” feminism, the women – Linda Martín Alcoff, Cinzia Arruzza, Tithi Bhattacharya, Nancy Fraser, Barbara Ransby, Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor, Rasmea Yousef Odeh, and Angela Davis – explained that a strike was intended to fight for the rights of all women.

“While Trump’s blatant misogyny was the immediate trigger for the huge response on 21 January, the attack on women (and all working people) long predates his administration,” they wrote.

“Women’s conditions of life, especially those of women of colour and of working, unemployed and migrant women, have steadily deteriorated over the last 30 years, thanks to financialization and corporate globalisation.”


Read more: The art of leaning back: why it's time to redefine what success looks like


Referencing the bestselling career advice book by Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, they argued that so-called “lean-in feminism and other variants of corporate feminism” had not served to advance the lives of “the overwhelming majority” of women.

A general strike, they said, should aim to support women “who do not have access to individual self-promotion and advancement and whose conditions of life can be improved only through policies that defend social reproduction, secure reproductive justice and guarantee labour rights.”

The new wave of feminist activism triggered by the rise of Donald Trump “must be a feminism for the 99%”, they concluded.

argentina

Black Wednesday: a women's strike took place in Argentina in October 2016 to protest gender-based violence.

The organisers of the Women’s March on Washington say that the strike is intended to highlight which companies are helping in the fight for equality and which are holding women and oppressed communities back.

“We ask: do businesses support our communities, or do they drain our communities?” the group wrote on Instagram.

“Do they strive for gender equity or do they support the policies and leaders that perpetuate oppression? Do they align with a sustainable environment or do they profit off destruction and steal the futures of our children?”

While this women’s strike is likely to be the most prominent in recent history, the idea did not originate with the organisers of the Women’s March. Last October, thousands of women across Latin America went on strike to protest male violence against women, after 16-year-old Argentinian student Lucía Péréz was brutally raped and murdered. The organisers of that strike – known as #MiércolesNegro, or Black Wednesday – called on women to stop working, studying and other activities for one hour.

“In your office, school, hospital, law court, newsroom, shop, factory, or wherever you are working, stop for an hour to demand ‘no more machista violence’,” they said.

Images: Rex Features

Related

clinton nasty women.jpg

Hillary Clinton has an important message for nasty women everywhere

alicia-keys.jpg

Alicia Keys on the importance of activism and self-love

muslim-ban-protest-london-signs.jpg

The most brilliantly British signs from the UK’s ‘Muslim ban’ protests

Comments

More

Clueless nearly never got made because of Hollywood sexism

As Cher would say, as if

by Jasmine Andersson
23 Jun 2017

Starbucks are hiring 2,500 refugees across Europe

by Nicola Colyer
23 Jun 2017

Man carries out flower girl duties with immense pride and solemnity

His commitment is quite something

by Amy Swales
23 Jun 2017

Shocking US law says men can finish sex if woman withdraws consent

Shocking

by Moya Crockett
23 Jun 2017

Serial fans, Adnan Syed has been given a second chance in court

New hope for Syed supporters

by Kayleigh Dray
23 Jun 2017

The scientific reason summer turns you into a horrible person

A new study confirms that we’re not very nice when we’re too hot

by Moya Crockett
23 Jun 2017

The 5 most surprising things I learnt from appearing on First Dates

What's it really like to appear on First Dates?

by Jasmine Andersson
22 Jun 2017

Rihanna just gave a heartbroken fan the best relationship advice

The pop star took time out to give a fan this brilliant tip

by Stylist
22 Jun 2017

First Dates fans respond to “shocking” mansplaining incident

“A frightened, insecure monkey hanging on to his patriarchal perch for dear life”

by Kayleigh Dray
22 Jun 2017

Golden rules of work happiness from Europe’s female tech leaders

From nap rooms to therapists and no overtime

by Anna Brech
22 Jun 2017