US women to stage all-out strike in follow-up to Women's March against Donald Trump

'Day without a woman' comes alongside walk-outs by immigrant labourers and New York taxi drivers

Matt Broomfield
Tuesday 07 February 2017 16:26 GMT
The organisers of the Women's March which brought 600,000 to Washington want American women to refuse all paid and unpaid labour in protest at Donald Trump
The organisers of the Women's March which brought 600,000 to Washington want American women to refuse all paid and unpaid labour in protest at Donald Trump (EPA/MICHAEL REYNOLDS)

The organisers of the Women's March on Washington and its counterparts around the globe, have called on American women to go on strike for a day as they continue to campaign against President Donald Trump.

The "day without a woman" aims to highlight the contribution paid and unpaid female labour makes to the US economy.

A date for the strike is yet to be set, but a separate general strike has also been called to protest against Mr Trump's so called "Muslim ban".

The President's executive order barred travellers from the Yemen, Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Syria for 90 days. It resulted in some people being detained or deported from the US even if they had a valid visa or green card. The measures, which have since been suspended, also prevented refugee resettlement in the US for 120 days and barred Syrian refugees indefinitely.

The general strike will also protest Mr Trump's proposed Mexico-US border wall and reinstatement of the "global gag rule" which bans US government funding for any international health organisation or NGO around the world, that counsel women on family planning options including access to safe abortion

The relationship between the women's strike and the general strike already called for 17 February by Strike4Democracy and other organisations remains unclear.

Meanwhile, the Service Employees International Union (SEUI), which represents 1.9 million public sector workers across North America, has called for a strike on 1 May – International Labour Day.

Critics on Twitter and elsewhere have noted a true "general strike" would last longer than a single day and require more organisation than is possible in the space of a few weeks.

It appears that the F17 general strike campaigners intend to organise a day of direct action rather than a prolonged refusal of work to secure better working and living conditions.

On their website, its organisers said: "We will show dissent with unconstitutional governance through gatherings and activities to be organized at the local/personal level."

The initial women's marches, which took place across the United States and the world to protest Donald Trump's inauguration, may have been the largest day of protest in US history.

Somewhere between 3.3 million and 4.6 million marchers made their presence known across the United States, with perhaps 600,000 in Washington alone, while there were marches in solidarity from Iraq to Afghanistan.

Some service workers have already gone on strike to remind the government of the economic contribution made by refugees, migrants and undocumented workers, while New York taxi drivers struck to protest Donald Trump's "inhumane" travel ban on citizens of Muslim-majority countries.

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