Three influential activists in the gender equality sphere are banding together with the goal of helping 2 million women become a class of intersectional, intergenerational activists themselves.
Alicia Garza, co-founder of Black Lives Matter Global Network and principal of Black Futures Lab, Ai-jen Poo, executive director of the National Domestic Workers Alliance, and Cecile Richards, the former head of Planned Parenthood, publicly announced their organization Supermajority on Monday.
As Garza said to reporters on Monday, one in five Americans say they have marched or protested in the last two years; teachers went on strike, women attorneys went to airports to help people being hit by immigration laws, and of course the Women’s Marches brought together millions of women in protests coasts to coast. But instead of being exhausted, she says, women want more opportunities to engage. That’s where Supermajority comes in (the name being a nod to 54 percent of voters in the 2018 election being women).
Some of the plank issues involved include childcare costs, elder care, fair access to affordable housing, and an administration, that Richards described as “trying to roll back rights for women.” But also, as Poo noted, “between us we have 75 years of organizing on domestic workers rights, reproductive rights, and racial justice.” The point is not as much as mobilizing solely around the issues that tend to be Women’s Issues like equal pay and reproductive rights, even though that is part of the goal. The goal is to bring together women from local and national activism circles involved in multiple movements to increase voter representation, help make better policies, and advocate for those in need.
The group will work in partnership with the online group Pantsuit Nation, which grew on Facebook around the 2016 presidential election to rally behind candidate Hillary Clinton. But the first major in-person push will be a cross-country listening tour to get a better grasp of the issues and concerns women are engaged with, whether they’ve been marching for years or new to advocacy work.
“After the avalanche of activism in 2016, we talked and listen to women to see how women were taking action and see how we can harness and support it,” Poo said. “Women are already doing the hard work of repairing this country, but we found that women want to do more. They want to do more than just resist.”