All you need to know about March 9th women’s national strike in Mexico

Feminist activists, social media users, and women in general are calling for a national strike on March 9, a day after International Women’s Day, commemorated on March 8.

In Mexico, at least 10 women are murdered every day, four children go missing, and authorities rarely solve the cases or punish the criminals. Therefore, women are raising their voices to demand equality, justice, and the eradication of gender violence, especially femicide.

Recommended: What is femicide?

For decades, Mexican women have been besieged by both femicide and impunity, which prevails since a series of femicides took place in Ciudad Juárez in the 90s, alarming femicide rates in the state of Mexico in the last two decades, and more recent cases such as Ingrid Escamilla and Fátima Cecilia Aldrighetti.

On March 9, women plan not to work, go to school, take their daughters to school, and not purchase anything. They are also urging men to be allies and help women on that day.

The aim is to give visibility to the role women have in Mexico and to make a radical statement against femicide, misogyny, and inequality.

According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, International Women’s Day has been sponsored by the United Nations since 1975 but the feminist movement commemorated it since the early 1900s.

The date was established as an effort to promote women’s rights, especially the right to vote.

This date is now an important occasion to promote women’s issues and rights, especially in developing countries such as Mexico.

Using the hashtags #ParoNacionaldeMujeres (National Women’s Strike), #UnDíaSinNosotras (A Day Without Us), and #UnDiaSinMujeres (A Day Without Women), people are showing their support to the strike.

Now, universities, Mexico’s government, and political parties have joined the call for the national strike against violence against women.

Regarding universities, both private and public ones have shown their solidarity with the feminist movement. Some of the education institutions that have joined the call for a national strike are the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), the National Polytechnic Institute (IPN), the Autonomous Metropolitan University (UAM), the University of Veracruz, the Meritorious Autonomous University of Puebla (BUAP), the Autonomous University of Querétaro (UAQ), and the Autonomous University of Yucatán (UADY), among others.

Meanwhile, several representatives of the government have also joined the call. For instance, Interior Minister Olga Cordero said on her Twitter account that she supported the protest “As a woman and in my personal capacity, I join the National Strike.”

In the same way, Mexico City’s mayoress Claudia Sheinbaum said in a news conference that her administration is mainly headed by women, who are committed to eradicating discrimination, gender inequality, and all kinds of violence against women.

For her part, the president of the lower house of Congress, Laura Rojas, informed that the General Table authorized to guarantee the payment to all female workers in San Lázaro so that they can join the feminist movement.

Likewise, the president of the Senate, Mónica Fernández, asserted that this organism will solidarize with the initiative and the women who work there will be able to join in.

Nonetheless, Beatriz Gutiérrez Müller, wife of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, has sent a somewhat confusing message. At first, she had joined the call and even shared her support through her social networks, however, she later posted a contradictory message rejecting the national strike with the hashtag #NoAlParoNacional (No To The National Strike) and asked women and men to protest with white handkerchiefs: “We support AMLO and we also want to eradicate violence,” said an image she uploaded.

However, several states of the Republic have shown their support to the movement, including Michoacán, Veracruz, Querétaro, Yucatán, the State of Mexico, Sonora, Tamaulipas, Coahuila, and Durango.

After feminist groups announced the national strike, a conservative and right-wing party, PAN, announced their support; however, the party was criticized since they are against abortion and same-sex marriage, which affects vulnerable groups such as the LGBQT+ community and women. 

Also, an important question was brought up by a Mexican historian, as it is unlikely that low-income women will skip work. This also leads feminists to reevaluate the role and impact the movement has on the lives of women who do not belong to the middle and upper class.

Now, Mexican women who live abroad are calling each other to join the protest by wearing purple clothes and protesting outside the Mexican consulates and embassies:

The Mazatlan Post