March 8 is the 100th anniversary of the International Women's Day - a holiday in other parts of the world started in recognition of the struggles of working women.
I worked in the Lower East Side of NYC as a patient advocate just blocks from the site of the infamous Triangle Shirtwaist fire that inspired the day. The sweat shop owners chained the doors to keep the women from taking breaks, a fire caused the deaths of 146 garment workers, who either died from the fire or jumped to their deaths. Most of the victims were recent young immigrant Jewish women.
The incident led to a
strike and national movement for better working conditions for women and
children workers, safer industrial standards and shorter working days
and weeks. It also led to the founding of the International Ladies
Garment Workers Union, to which both my sister and mother-in-law were
Mayor Quan with Oakland Girl Scouts at a forum on Girl Power.
|Join Us on the Bridge on March 8|
Today women are still facing many economic struggles for equity. As Oakland's first woman mayor and a long-time women's advocate, I want to honor the progress we have made and organize for the progress still needed.
Please take a moment this week to thank the women who have played a significant role in your life - your mother, wife, sister, teacher, co-worker, friend - and even your daughter, who are already learning how to be the leaders of tomorrow.
I'll be joining local leaders at Crissy Field at the Golden Gate Bridge at 10 a.m. Tuesday, March 8, at Google's "Join WoMEn the Bridge" campaign in support of Women for Women International.