As you probably know by now, a strike called “A Day Without a Woman” is currently being organized for March 8, which is International Women’s Day. As the fervor around it grows, many of you are likely wondering if you can be fired for participating. As it turns out, the National Labor Relations Act protects our right to strike, but not across the board. According to this interpretation of the act, “Strikes are generally considered by the Act to be lawful if they are protesting for economic reasons—like wages, working hours, or working conditions—or if they are protesting unfair labor practices. In both cases, employees are protected from being discharged, but general or mass strikes (like the women’s strike) that are not linked to specific employment issues seem to be a different matter, especially in the United States.” We suggest you read the act yourself and speak with your superior before deciding to strike—here is a template letter to send your employer or to use as inspiration for your conversation with him or her. If you decide it’s not a good idea, fret not—there are other ways to support the movement, which has changed the course of history many times since its inception. Here are a few of them.
If You Can't Strike, Do This Instead
Strike organizers are asking that women (and men) wear red on March 8 in a show of solidarity for the movement.
As women reportedly drive 70% to 80% of all consumer purchasing in America (wow!), not shopping on March 8 will help to send a powerful message to those in power at the companies affected. If you must shop, do so at women- and minority-led companies.
Planned Parenthood, the ACLU and other organizations still need support, so if you do spend money on March 8, put some of it toward donations.
March 8 isn't the only day to be active in the movement. Look for a local "Hear Our Voice" event or even host your own.
If you can't strike, you can use your lunch break to write letters to your representatives about the issues you're most passionate about.
We strongly encourage finding someone with a different perspective and engaging them in an open, non-hostile conversation on why you support the strike. Bonus points if you can then get permission from the opposing party to post any of this dialogue on social media, as the only way we can begin to effect deep and lasting change is by reaching out "across the aisle."