College Democrats prepare for Women’s March on Washington

On Thursday night, the GW College Democrats held a sign making event for Saturday’s Women’s March on Washington. The goal of the march was to stand up for women’s rights amid a deeply conservative Congress and the onset of a Trump presidency.

“The [poster-making] event is really important because of two things,” Levi Debose, vice president of communications for the College Democrats, said. “One, our membership is growing closer as we take a united stand for issues plaguing women across America. Two, we’re getting ready for one of the most important marches in U.S. history, one expected to be bigger than Trump’s inauguration, a march that is symbolic because it shows just how many people care about these issues.”

“In a broader sense, we need to hold Trump accountable for policies that benefit women, and that women’s voices are not only included but are counted and women’s issues are considered.”

Women’s access to healthcare was one of the central themes of the march, as the GOP makes concerted efforts to defund Planned Parenthood. To support healthcare advocacy, the Dems provided bright pink posters, as well as pink paint and markers to use on white posters.

Debose said that access to healthcare is the biggest issue women will face in 2017.

“The issue ranges from the ability to have healthcare to actually being able to afford it,” he said. “That includes access to an abortion. It includes the access to birth control and other prevention methods. It means that every woman has healthcare that covers any problems they have.”

Jazmin Kay, vice president of political affairs, organized the event with help from her committee and Caitlin Berg, the deputy director on women’s issues.

“We always knew we wanted GW Dems to play a role in the women’s march, and we thought this was a good opportunity for Dems and the GW community to come together on this issue,” Kay said.

Emily Recko, freshman

Emily Recko, freshman

Berg agreed with Debose that the biggest issue facing women now is healthcare.

“There will be other issues, but the GOP has made a top priority defunding Planned Parenthood, which does so much for women,” she said. “We can’t afford this when in places like Texas the maternal mortality rate is rising and passing some countries that have never had abortion rights.”

Poster by Shayda Sales, sophomore

Poster by Shayda Sales, sophomore

Besides healthcare, the Women’s March also promoted other critical messages like fighting back against Trump’s misogynistic rhetoric, as well as fears that women will be worse off under the Trump administration than under Obama’s.

“In a broader sense, we need to hold Trump accountable for policies that benefit women, and that women’s voices are not only included but are counted and women’s issues are considered,” Kay said.

Jazmin Kay, right, and Aly Belknap, left. Sign by Aly Belknap, sophomore.

Jazmin Kay, right, and Aly Belknap, left. Sign by Aly Belknap, sophomore.

Originally published at gw.therival.news by Emily Milakovic on 1.23.17.
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CampusEmily Milakovic