The Women's March
on Washington, D.C., will send a strong message to the new administration in
Washington on its first day in office.
“Women's rights are
human rights, and we will fight not only to protect our advances so far, but
to keep moving forward until women have equity and parity at all levels of
society,” is the message that will be carried by the more than 200,000
people expected at the January 21, 2017, almost 200 of them from right here
in Northwest Indiana.
Rebecca Reiner and Julie Storbeck both felt they needed to do something
after the recent election, and the Women's March is providing that outlet.
“This isn't an
anti-Trump protest,” said Storbeck. “It's about policy, and policy makers.
When you look at Trump's cabinet picks, you see a lot of folks who've voted
against re-authorizing the Violence Against Women Act, against the Ledbetter
Act for fair pay, and against insurance companies covering birth control,
for example. These are the people who will set the tone of the Trump
Administration and advise him on these issues? That's pretty scary.”
“It's a way to put,
and keep, women's rights in the spotlight. Our values are family values,
they’re American values. We have to make that loud and clear,” added Reiner.
Both women agree
there's a positive tone to this Women's March. “We'll be networking,
building alliances, and learning from each other's experiences,” said
Storbeck. “We have women going who have marched for civil rights in the
60's, for the ERA in the 70's, against the draft in the 80's, and right up
to today. They’ll be marching alongside young women who will be the future
of our movement. We've accomplished a lot over several generations, and
we're not going back, especially when there's so much left to do.”
The two hope women
from all over the region will join in this historic effort.
When the organizers
chartered buses to Washington, D.C., they chose to leave from Portage
because of its central location between Lake and LaPorte Counties. Round
trip tickets cost $120 and can be reserved through HoosierWomen@gmail.com.
The buses will
leave Friday night, January 20, following a farewell dinner, leave the
capitol Saturday night after the march, and arrive back in Portage on Sunday
morning. “It's an overnight drive, the bus is roomy, riders can bring dvds
to watch, and we'll stop for a group breakfast with time to clean up before
we roll into D.C.” Reiner said.
Not everyone is
traveling by bus. Dozens of area women are flying or ride sharing by car or
RV. Storbeck stressed the importance of those women connecting with her and
Reiner. “No matter how they get there, we want to make sure they have all
the information they need for march day, and know they aren’t alone. We want
to be able to find each other, too!”
The two women are
working closely with state and national organizers to ensure a safe and
successful march for everyone who attends.
Those who are
unable to go to the Women’s March can sponsor a bus ticket, or part of a
ticket, or donate snacks and drinks for the bus ride or the march. They can
be involved in local activities and events like the farewell dinner, or
attend a sister march in Chicago or Indianapolis.
information about the Women's March, contact Rebecca Reiner or Julie
Storbeck at HoosierWomen@gmail.com