3rd annual Women’s March returning to Trenton
TRENTON — For the third year in a row, women and supporters of women's rights will come together for a march in solidarity.
Elizabeth Meyer, found of the Women's March on New Jersey, said the march will be held on Jan. 19, starting at 11 a.m. at the State House Annex and going to the War Memorial. The inaugural march was held in 2017 before moving to Morristown last year.
"Considering the divisive climate, what we really want to focus on is bringing together kindred spirits of women grounded in diversity and celebrating the beauty of our strength and our differences," Meyer said. "We're not there to condemn or to denounce or to assume or to speak for everyone. What we really want to do is just create an event, a movement that is really authentic inclusivity."
In the two years since the first march, Meyer said the outlooks is better for women across the country. She said in 2017 there were a lot of women who "woke up" and got involved in politics more than they ever had before.
"2018 was more about bringing our power to the polls and saying this is who we are, these are our values we have and this is what we expect from our representatives," she said. "Now in 2019, we're really focusing on sort of fortifying ourselves as women to build solidarity within our own communities. The only way we're going to move forward is by moving forward together."
A prime example of progress for women is Congresswoman-elect Mikie Sherrill. Meyer called the former federal prosecutor and Navy veteran a "fantastic example of a woman who has picked up the gauntlet and said enough." Sherrill won a hard-fought election over Republican Assemblyman Jay Webber to win the seat in New Jersey's 11th Congressional district. When she is sworn in, she will succeed longtime Republican U.S. Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen.
One misconception about the New Jersey march that Meyer wants to dispel is the fact that the local march is not connected to the national march set for the same day in Washington, D.C. She said her organization is not an official affiliate of the national march, and that the national group does not speak for the New Jersey group.
"What we really want to focus on is our mission here in New Jersey," she said. "We specifically chose to march on the same day as the other women and allies across the country because we believe that it's a really powerful movement to be standing together in unison."
Meyer said it is hard to estimate how many people will take part in this year's march. The march got 15,000 people last year. She said they are hoping for at least 5,000 people to come out this year.
Final plans, including who will be attending the parade as guests and speakers, have yet to be arranged, but Meyer said they want to have a diverse group of women. She said that while women have different stories there are common bonds that bring them together. While this is the third year, Meyer said she hopes to see the march continue for many more years.