Like many of my fellow peers and colleagues, I participated in the Women’s March on Denver this past January. I cannot attempt to describe the sense of solidarity and pride I felt along with all of the women, men, and children standing next to me in Denver’s Civic Center Park. It gave me a much-needed reminder that we have the power to invoke the change we desire. We are strong, we are united, and love trumps hate.
Since that day I have been following the Women’s March on Denver’s social media pages to stay involved and active. I was thrilled to see that they offered information on “A Day Without a Woman,” along with some helpful suggestions of what I can do this International Women’s Day. One of their suggestions to women was to take a stand by taking a “day off” of paid or unpaid labor. At first I thought, wow, what a great way to make a bold and powerful statement. Then I got to thinking: fair trade is about giving voices and opportunities to marginalized groups and women who don’t have the means or an outlet to do so themselves. Yes, it would be powerful to close down the shop for the day, but how would this be helping the women of fair trade? They do not have the privilege or get the opportunity to take a day off of work, so why should I?
We choose to stay open on March 8 to show our solidarity with women around the world who can’t afford to take a day off.
Women face oppression and injustices in the workforce every day, both abroad and in the U.S. I believe that by keeping our doors open we can better support the women of fair trade, because without the purchase of the products they create, there is no compensation for their persistence and work. I think this too can be seen as a bold and beautiful statement.
There is no right or wrong way to celebrate our accomplishments as women, while recognizing that there is still much to do. We will speak out in our own way and we urge you to do the same. Our partnership with hardworking women is one way we make a stand everyday. Every purchase you make with us is a stand against the injustice of unfair trade. For the women we support this is extremely empowering and essential to their continued progress.
There are many ways you can make a stand on International Women’s Day. If you can’t take a day off, you can still be involved. An article on Bustle gave the following suggestions:
- Wear red in solidarity
- Shop only at women and minority-owned businesses
- Donate to an organization you know is doing good work to support women’s struggles
- Spread positivity on social media
- Call your representative and urge them to support women’s rights
Taylor (Manager at Momentum)
**All Fair Trade Winds+Momentum stores will be open on Wednesday, March 8th in solidarity with the women artisans we support around the world. They rely on our business and we respect their hard work by staying open.