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January 21, 2022
March 8, 2017

Women March Forward

Next steps for the Women's March Edmonton

Written by Jeff Samsonow
| Photos by Lindsey Locke
Nakita Valerio speaks at Women's March Edmonton on January 21, 2017. Photo: Lindsey Locke

Women’s March Edmonton organizers Alison Poste and Paula Kirman on January 21, 207. Photo by Lindsey Locke

The march continues. Organizers of the Women’s March Edmonton aren’t content to let the massive protests in January stand as the end of the reignited discussion on women’s rights.

As is happening in other cities around the world, the push continues today on International Women’s Day, and at future events. In Edmonton, the literal next steps are March 25 at the Boyle Street Plaza.

Organizer Alison Poste says after thousands of people showed up at the Alberta Legislature in January, many wanted to know what they could do next.

“Attendees and community members (many of whom had never marched or attended a protest/rally before) told us that they would like the opportunity to interact with organizations making a difference to women and our non-binary friends in Edmonton and Northern Alberta.”

Nasra Adem on the steps of the Alberta Legislature for the Women’s March Edmonton, January 21, 2017. Photo by Lindsey Locke.

The March 25 event will be a “human library”, where attendees interact with people and organizations in an informal environment. It’s about encouraging and fostering community connections and intended to be a broadly inclusive and intersectional event. There’s a focus on actual next steps.

“Our community has let us know very strongly that they wish to keep the momentum going following the Women’s March, and we intend to ensure we provide opportunities for our friends and allies to stay engaged and active, with a focus on concrete actions anyone can take,” Poste says.

“As a result of a survey we commissioned immediately following the Women’s March, our community told us the issues that are most important to them, including issues impacting Indigenous women, violence against women, equal pay for equal work and the LGBTQIA2S community.” (list is below)

After March 25, expect more events and actions in Edmonton. Poste and her co-organizer, Paula Kirman, say the Women’s March group is working on other initiatives which will be announced soon.

If you’re interested in the March 25 event, visit the Facebook event page for details (you have to RSVP through Eventbrite so they know how many people are coming). The event is by donation (suggested $10) but nobody will be turned away due to lack of payment. The Boyle Street Plaza is fully accessible, and the event is open to all allies, regardless of gender. There’s also free childcare.

Reakash Walters at the Women’s March Edmonton. Photo by Lindsey Locke.

Participating organizations in the “human library” work in the following areas (among others):

  • Advocacy for and by Indigenous Women
  • Violence Against Women
  • Combating Islamophobia
  • Women of Colour
  • Women in Politics
  • Women with Disabilities
  • Immigrant Women’s Groups
  • Reproductive Choice
  • Equal Pay for Equal Work
  • Issues impacting the LGBTQIA2S community
  • Access to Affordable Child Care – Youth Issues
  • Women in Leadership
  • Women in Activism
  • Sex Trafficking
  • Women in Academia, Sciences, STEM fields