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Rochester area women plan events in support of women's strike

Mar 6, 2017

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Women in the Rochester area and around the country are taking part in an event to commemorate International Women's Day this Wednesday.

A Day Without a Woman sprang from the Women's March on Washington in January.

"A number of us had been a part of the Women's March in D.C., in Seneca Falls, in Syracuse, and I think all recognized that as a really empowering moment,” said Hanna Dickinson, organizer of the event in Geneva. “Many of us have also been involved in the 'Resist Trump Tuesdays' in front of Tom Reed's office, and so I think there was sort a moment where a handful of us were saying 'protesting feels good, but it's time to really resist.'

Organizers are asking women to take the day off from paid and unpaid work if they can.

"It would make such an impact. I mean, our world would just stop dead in its tracks because women are so depended upon," said Barbara Moore, treasurer of the Rochester chapter of the National Organization for Women (NOW).

Eve Elzenga, a Rochester business owner and NOW volunteer, says the event is a demonstration of economic solidarity.

"I think that we look at this as another opportunity to be seen, and to be seen forcefully, and that we are not quiet; that we are not going to be quiet, and that we are very well aware of our circumstances. We're still making less money than men, we're being treated in unfair ways, and there is still great sexual harassment and misogyny."

While they say they recognize that not every woman has the luxury of walking off the job, organizers say they can still show their support for the event by wearing red and by not shopping, except at women and minority-owned small businesses.

"Because we know when it comes to shopping, women really keep the economy going. They are the ones doing the work and the purchasing for the families," said Barbara Moore, treasurer of the Rochester chapter of the National Organization for Women (NOW).

Moore said women cannot take their rights for granted, especially under the Trump administration.

The Rochester NOW chapter is asking women and their allies to participate in the demonstration by visiting three women-owned businesses in the South Wedge; Premier Pastry, 433 South Avenue at 10 .am., Hedonist Artisan Chocolates, 674 South Avenue and Leaf Tea Bar, 650 South Avenue at 3:30 p.m.