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Saturday, September 30, 2023

Women’s March on Washington: What You Need to Know

The Women’s March on Washington, a project that began with a Facebook page in the hours after the election of Donald J. Trump, quickly grew into a movement.

Many thousands of people could visit Washington to march on Jan. 21, the day after the inauguration. Here’s what we know about the event so far. We’ll update as we learn more.

And if you are going, The Times wants to hear from you

  1. Why are people marching?

    From the beginning, the purpose of this march has been to challenge Mr. Trump’s administration.

    “We’re doing it his very first day in office because we are making a statement,” one organizer, Breanne Butler, said in an interview days after the election. Of the the marginalized groups she accused Mr. Trump of attacking during his campaign, she said, “We are here and we are watching. And, like, ‘Welcome to the White House.’”

    As the women’s group has become more organized, four co-chairwomen have refined the mission to specifically elevate groups like immigrants and minorities. Groups focused on immigration rights, including Define American and United We Dream, are partners with the group. Abortion rights will also be on the agenda: Naral Pro-Choice America and Planned Parenthood are both encouraging people to attend.

    More than 30 other groups have joined as partners, including the Muslim Women’s Alliance, the Trayvon Martin Foundation, Girls Who Code and Black Girls Rock.How many people will be there?

    Cassady Fendlay, a spokeswoman for the organizers of the march, said that as many as 200,000 people could participate. She said organizers did not have a firm figure, but that they were monitoring replies to their invitations on Facebook and Eventbrite.

    Law enforcement authorities in Washington are planning for a crowd that could swell to 400,000, according to Christopher T. Geldart, the director of homeland security for the District of Columbia. He said his office was monitoring reservations on Amtrak, for charter buses and for motel and hotel rooms, as well as comparing the event to previous marches to better estimate the size of the coming crowd.

    He said his office was also planning for the possibility that other demonstrations could occur that day.

    “We’re basically not going to stand anything down after the inauguration,” Mr. Geldart said, referring to the additional police and National Guard units that will be in the capital to assist local law enforcement authorities. “We’re leaving that stuff in place.”

  2. Where are they marching?

    The march will start at 10 a.m. at Independence Avenue and Third Street S.W., near the National Museum of the American Indian. Participants will hold several events for an hour or two before the march begins, Ms. Fendlay said. The final route has not yet been determined.

    The event could last until 5 p.m.

  3. Are any bold-face names attending the march?

    The march does not yet have a confirmed host or M.C., and it is still unclear what sort of program will be offered. Gloria Steinem and Harry Belafonte are honorary co-chairs, but Mr. Belafonte, 89, had not decided if he will attend, his assistant, Ingrid Ellis, said Monday.

    On their social media accounts, the actresses Julianne Moore and Jessica Chastain and the comedian Amy Schumer are among celebrities who have said they would attend.

  4. Are men invited?

    Of course.

  5. How are people getting there?

    Any way they can. Buses seem to be a popular mode of transportation. Rallybus is one site marchers are using to find transportation.

    Marchers will also be arriving from outside the United States. Julie Buchanan, an organizer in Toronto, said in an email that she was among 53 people chartering a bus for the trip to Washington.

    Karin Blake Grana wrote in an email that she and a friend were flying in from Oslo to march. “We booked our plane tickets less than a week after the election,” Ms. Grana wrote. “We are that gung-ho.”

    For those who cannot make it to Washington, sister marches are being organized all over the world, from Los Angeles to Oklahoma City to Athens. For those who still want to try to make it to the march in Washington, a site called MarchMatch.org is trying to help match travelers with carpools. One caveat: The website is not affiliated with the march and hasn’t been vetted for safety, Ms. Fendlay said.


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