“International Women’s Day (March 8th) is a global day celebrating women’s social, economic, cultural, and political achievements.” Additionally, “the day also marks a call to action for accelerating women’s equality,” #EmbraceEquity
History of International Women’s Day
On March 8th, 1857, a brave group of female garment and textile workers “marched in protest of unfair working conditions and unequal rights for women.” Women were required to work extraordinarily long hours and for extremely low wages. The protest is one of the most influential historical events regarding the fight for equal rights for women.
Consequently, 53 years later, on March 8th, 1910, International Women’s Day became annually observed. As a result, there have been many advancements in women’s equality in the United States and worldwide; however, the unfortunate reality is that women are still not “equal” to their male counterparts in many aspects, most glaringly equal pay.
The United States Census Bureau conducted a study in 2019 of median earnings of full-time, year-round workers by gender and occupation. As seen below, it’s crystal clear that even today, women have significant ground to make up regarding equal pay.
It’s not just about “Equality;” it’s about “Equity.”
The theme for International Women’s Day 2023 is #EmbraceEquity. Many people think equity equals equality. “Etymologically, the root word they share is aequus, meaning “even” or “fair” or “equal” – which led to equity being from the Latin aequitas, and equality from aequalitas. Yet, despite these similarities, equity, and equality are inherently different concepts”, #EmbraceEquity.
Time to Get Involved! Below is a wonderful video from Cammy Watkins explaining the difference between equality and equity. Take a few minutes to watch it:
You can find a list of events on the International Women’s Day website. Select the United States for the country, scroll to the bottom of the list in cities, and select virtual.
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