Local groups head for Washington; Women's March stands for equality

January 11, 2017

River Reporter

REGION — A national movement to march on Washington, DC is being held the day after the inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump. Women from all over the country will unite to make their voices heard. 

The aim of the march isn’t to protest the fact that Trump won the election. Rather, it is a way to send a message to the new administration that women’s rights are human rights. Other issues will also be brought up.

The event’s website (www.womensmarch.com) states, “We stand together in solidarity with our partners and children for the protection of our rights, our safety, our health, and our families—recognizing that our vibrant and diverse communities are the strength of our country.”

The site says the march will represent those who have been “insulted, demonized, and threatened” by the rhetoric of this past election cycle. Not only women, but the LGBT community, Muslims, people of color, people with disabilities, the economically impoverished and survivors of sexual assault will join in diversity.

Local groups are organizing buses to carry people from our area to Washington. One bus is leaving from Honesdale, PA and is organized by Jill Carletti and Marianne Milks. “Around the country people are very much concerned about the way the election was held and the issues at stake,” Carletti said. “We have real concerns about the language, rhetoric and inconsistency in everything he [Trump] has done,” she added.

Catskill Mountainkeeper is organizing a bus from Liberty, NY. Local artist and activist Brandi Merolla will be on that trip. She said, “I’m going to the Women’s March in DC to add my voice to those who support Roe v. Wade, pay equality, respecting women and protecting our human rights in the face of Trump’s threats to undo all the progress we’ve made thus far. Our loud collective voice starts day one.”

The election cycle witnessed a variety of misogynistic moments, such as a statement by Trump (later revoked) that he thought women who get abortions should be legally punished, and a hidden camera video in which he described making overt sexual advances to women without asking for or being given consent. And in recent news, Republicans in Congress are working to repeal Obamacare and end federal funding for Planned Parenthood. The non-profit organization Planned Parenthood provides low-cost or free healthcare and family-planning services for low-income women and families. The defunding measure would take away roughly $400 million in Medicaid money from the group in the year after enactment, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, and would result in roughly 400,000 women losing access to care.

The Women’s March website says, “The Women’s March on Washington will send a bold message to our new government on their first day in office, and to the world that women’s rights are human rights. We stand together, recognizing that defending the most marginalized among us is defending all of us.”

There will be sister marchers held locally and around the country.

Catskill Mountainkeeper bus from Liberty, NY
    • Departs at 5 a.m. and returns at 9 p.m.
    • Tickets cost $50 per person. Purchase at www.catskillmountainkeeper.org/january_21st_bus_to_dc.
    • If you have any questions, email [email protected].
Bus from Honesdale, PA
    • Departs at 4 a.m. and returns at 10 p.m.
    • Tickets cost $50. Purchase here http://bit.ly/2hcq08N.
    • One bus is already filled. There is now a waitlist/interest list for a second bus.

By Isabel Braverman


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