Saturday, Sept. 30, thousands of people from all across the country converged in Washington, D.C., to support the March for Black Women, organized by the Black Women’s Blueprint. Krystal Leaphart, an NAACP member and Howard University student activist, who played a key role in keeping the march organized, stated that one of the purposes of the march was to make sure that Black women are not left out of the racial justice conversation. The organizers of the march had the following list of demands:
Issue an apology to all Black women for centuries of abuses, including sexual violence and reproductive violations against Black bodies.
Beyond the 2016 Gender Bias Policing Guidance, ensure immediate and sustainable measures by the U.S. government to eliminate incarcerations, incidences of rape and “sexual misconduct,” police murder and violence against all Black women.
End the threat against the human right to health care and increase access, including all reproductive health care, bar none.
Ensure economic justice for Black low-income women at the communal and federal level, many of whom are at increased risk for violence because of lack of economic power.
Cease and desist all threats of deportation of immigrant women across the country, especially those whose deportation may cost them their lives or safety.
With chants of “Every Black Woman” and “Black Women Matter,” participants marched from Capitol Hill to the Department of Justice. Waikinya Clanton, a member of Delta Sigma Theta and a national political strategist, stated, “I attended the march because Black women are getting a raw deal in this country. Under no other circumstances do people work as hard as Black women and are still make 63 cents on the dollar, when they are the most educated and most qualified portion of the workforce.”
There were also several solidarity marches held across the country for those who could not make it to Washington, D.C. For more information on the follow-up to the march, visit the website www.marchforblackwomen.org.