Women go on strike in US to show their economic clout

  • Participants carry signs and chant during an International Women's Day rally in the shadow of New York's Trump Tower, Wednesday March 8, 2017, in New York.

    Participants carry signs and chant during an International Women's Day rally in the shadow of New York's Trump Tower, Wednesday March 8, 2017, in New York. Associated Press

  • First lady Melania Trump arrives in the State Dining room of the White House in Washington, Wednesday, March 8, 2017, where she hosted a luncheon on International Women's Day.

    First lady Melania Trump arrives in the State Dining room of the White House in Washington, Wednesday, March 8, 2017, where she hosted a luncheon on International Women's Day. Associated Press

  • Proponents of International Women's Day gather on the steps of the Wisconsin State Capitol for "A Day Without a Woman" rally in Madison, Wis. Wednesday, March 8, 2017. (John Hart/Wisconsin State Journal via AP)

    Proponents of International Women's Day gather on the steps of the Wisconsin State Capitol for "A Day Without a Woman" rally in Madison, Wis. Wednesday, March 8, 2017. (John Hart/Wisconsin State Journal via AP) Associated Press

  • People walk during a protest marking the International Women's Day, in central Istanbul's Istiklal Avenue, Wednesday, March 8, 2017. Organized by NGOs and women’s organizations, the march began amidst extensive security precautions. Demonstrations have been restricted during the state of emergency declared following last year’s failed coup, however police did not intervene with this year’s march.

    People walk during a protest marking the International Women's Day, in central Istanbul's Istiklal Avenue, Wednesday, March 8, 2017. Organized by NGOs and women’s organizations, the march began amidst extensive security precautions. Demonstrations have been restricted during the state of emergency declared following last year’s failed coup, however police did not intervene with this year’s march. Associated Press

  • Participants listen to remarks from a speaker at the International Women's Day rally in the shadow of New York's Trump Tower, Wednesday March 8, 2017, in New York.  The protest was part of a nationwide event called A Day Without a Woman. Many of the participants had taken a day off from work to show the impact women have on the American economy.

    Participants listen to remarks from a speaker at the International Women's Day rally in the shadow of New York's Trump Tower, Wednesday March 8, 2017, in New York. The protest was part of a nationwide event called A Day Without a Woman. Many of the participants had taken a day off from work to show the impact women have on the American economy. Associated Press

  • An unidentified participant raises her hand in support of a speaker during a march around the State Capitol to mark International Women's Day on Wednesday, March 8, 2017, in Denver. More than 1,000 women--and men--took part in the Denver march, one of many staged across the country by organizers of January's Women's March. The action called on women to stay home from work and not spend money in stories or online to show their economic clout on America's fabric.

    An unidentified participant raises her hand in support of a speaker during a march around the State Capitol to mark International Women's Day on Wednesday, March 8, 2017, in Denver. More than 1,000 women--and men--took part in the Denver march, one of many staged across the country by organizers of January's Women's March. The action called on women to stay home from work and not spend money in stories or online to show their economic clout on America's fabric. Associated Press

  • Demonstrators at the International Women's Day rally stage a sit-down protest outside Trump International Hotel at Columbus Circle, Wednesday March 8, 2017, in New York. Police made arrests after warning protesters they were blocking traffic.  The protest was part of a nationwide event called A Day Without a Woman.

    Demonstrators at the International Women's Day rally stage a sit-down protest outside Trump International Hotel at Columbus Circle, Wednesday March 8, 2017, in New York. Police made arrests after warning protesters they were blocking traffic. The protest was part of a nationwide event called A Day Without a Woman. Associated Press

  • Judy Miller of Evergreen, Colo., holds up a placard during a march around the State Capitol to mark International Women's Day on Wednesday, March 8, 2017, in Denver. More than 1,000 women--and men--took part in the Denver march, one of many staged across the country by organizers of January's Women's March. The action called on women to stay home from work and not spend money in stories or online to show their economic clout on America's fabric.

    Judy Miller of Evergreen, Colo., holds up a placard during a march around the State Capitol to mark International Women's Day on Wednesday, March 8, 2017, in Denver. More than 1,000 women--and men--took part in the Denver march, one of many staged across the country by organizers of January's Women's March. The action called on women to stay home from work and not spend money in stories or online to show their economic clout on America's fabric. Associated Press

  • A woman chants slogans during a protest marking the International Women's Day, in central Istanbul's Istiklal Avenue, Wednesday, March 8, 2017. Organized by NGOs and women’s organizations, the march began amidst extensive security precautions. Demonstrations have been restricted during the state of emergency declared following last year’s failed coup, however police did not intervene with this year’s march.

    A woman chants slogans during a protest marking the International Women's Day, in central Istanbul's Istiklal Avenue, Wednesday, March 8, 2017. Organized by NGOs and women’s organizations, the march began amidst extensive security precautions. Demonstrations have been restricted during the state of emergency declared following last year’s failed coup, however police did not intervene with this year’s march. Associated Press

  • Helen Shreves of Denver carries the American flag as she leads protesters during a march around the State Capitol to mark International Women's Day on Wednesday, March 8, 2017, in Denver. More than 1,000 women--and men--took part in the Denver march, one of many staged across the country by organizers of January's Women's March. The action called on women to stay home from work and not spend money in stories or online to show their economic clout on America's fabric.

    Helen Shreves of Denver carries the American flag as she leads protesters during a march around the State Capitol to mark International Women's Day on Wednesday, March 8, 2017, in Denver. More than 1,000 women--and men--took part in the Denver march, one of many staged across the country by organizers of January's Women's March. The action called on women to stay home from work and not spend money in stories or online to show their economic clout on America's fabric. Associated Press

  • Participants cheer a speaker's remarks  during the International Women's Day rally in the shadow of New York's Trump Tower, Wednesday March 8, 2017, in New York.  The protest was part of a nationwide event called A Day Without a Woman. Many of the participants had taken a day off from work to show the impact women have on the American economy.

    Participants cheer a speaker's remarks during the International Women's Day rally in the shadow of New York's Trump Tower, Wednesday March 8, 2017, in New York. The protest was part of a nationwide event called A Day Without a Woman. Many of the participants had taken a day off from work to show the impact women have on the American economy. Associated Press

  • Proponents of International Women's Day gather on the steps of the Wisconsin State Capitol for "A Day Without a Woman" rally in Madison, Wis. Wednesday, March 8, 2017. (John Hart/Wisconsin State Journal via AP)

    Proponents of International Women's Day gather on the steps of the Wisconsin State Capitol for "A Day Without a Woman" rally in Madison, Wis. Wednesday, March 8, 2017. (John Hart/Wisconsin State Journal via AP) Associated Press

  • Ann Freeman holds a sign at the Utah state capitol for a Day Without a Woman protest to remind legislators they're closely watching how they handle women's issues Wednesday, March 8, 2017, in Salt Lake City.

    Ann Freeman holds a sign at the Utah state capitol for a Day Without a Woman protest to remind legislators they're closely watching how they handle women's issues Wednesday, March 8, 2017, in Salt Lake City. Associated Press

  • House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of Calif. center, and other Democratic Congressional members, walk down the steps on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, March 8, 2017, for an event to honor International Women's Day.

    House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of Calif. center, and other Democratic Congressional members, walk down the steps on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, March 8, 2017, for an event to honor International Women's Day. Associated Press

  • People gather and listen as House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of Calif., joined other female Representatives, speak during an event on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, March 8, 2017, for International Women's Day.

    People gather and listen as House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of Calif., joined other female Representatives, speak during an event on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, March 8, 2017, for International Women's Day. Associated Press

  • Protesters march with a poster of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte donning horns during a rally to mark International Women's Day in Manila, Philippines on Wednesday March. 8, 2017. This women's group is also opposing the revival of the death penalty by the Philippine Congress.

    Protesters march with a poster of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte donning horns during a rally to mark International Women's Day in Manila, Philippines on Wednesday March. 8, 2017. This women's group is also opposing the revival of the death penalty by the Philippine Congress. Associated Press

  • Participants march to mark the International Women's Day in Tokyo, Wednesday, March 8, 2017.  In Tokyo, some 200 women gathered for a march, protesting against wage disparities, sexual harassment and other challenges that they say still face.

    Participants march to mark the International Women's Day in Tokyo, Wednesday, March 8, 2017. In Tokyo, some 200 women gathered for a march, protesting against wage disparities, sexual harassment and other challenges that they say still face. Associated Press

 
 

PHILADELPHIA -- Many American women stayed home from work, joined rallies or wore red Wednesday to demonstrate how vital they are to the U.S. economy, as International Women's Day was observed with a multitude of events around the world.

The Day Without a Woman protest in the U.S. was put together by organizers of the vast women's marches that drew more than 1 million Americans the day after President Donald Trump's inauguration.

The turnout on the streets this time was much smaller in many places, with crowds often numbering in the hundreds. There were no immediate estimates of how many women heeded the call to skip work.

"Trump is terrifying. His entire administration, they have no respect for women or our rights," said 49-year-old Adina Ferber, who took a vacation day from her job at an art gallery to attend a demonstration in New York City. "They need to deal with us as an economic force."

The U.S. event - inspired in part by the Day Without an Immigrant protest held last month - was part of the U.N.-designated International Women's Day.

In Warsaw, thousands of women showed Poland's conservative government red cards and made noise with kitchenware to demand full birth control rights, respect and higher pay.

In Rome, hundreds of women marched from the Colosseum to demand equal rights. Thousands marched in Istanbul, despite restrictions on demonstrations imposed since last year's failed coup. Turkish police did not interfere.

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Women also held rallies in Tokyo and Madrid.

Germany's Lufthansa airline arranged for six all-female crews to fly into Berlin. Sweden's women's soccer team replaced the names on the backs of the players' jerseys with tweets from Swedish women. Finland announced a new $160,000 International Gender Equality Prize.

A crowd of about 1,000 people, the vast majority of them women, gathered on New York's Fifth Avenue in the shadow of Trump Tower. Women wore red and waved signs reading "Nevertheless she persisted," ''Misogyny out of the White House now" and "Resist like a girl." Thirteen people were arrested for blocking traffic, police said.

School in such places as Prince George's County, Maryland; Alexandria, Virginia; and Chapel Hill, North Carolina, canceled classes after hundreds of teachers and other employees let it be known they would be out. In Providence, Rhode Island, the municipal court closed for lack of staff members.

In Washington, more than 20 Democratic female representatives walked out of the Capitol to address a cheering crowd of several hundred people.

Dressed in red, the lawmakers criticized efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act and eliminate federal funding for Planned Parenthood.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi encouraged more women to go into politics, saying, "You have marched for progress. Now you must run for office."

A few hundred people gathered on the lawn outside Los Angeles City Hall to rally for women's rights. Julie D'Angelo took the day off from her job in music licensing, saying she wanted to stand for those women who can't afford time away from work or are too intimidated to ask for the day off.

Hundreds of women dressed in red and holding signs with photos of their local lawmakers gathered at the Utah Capitol to remind legislators they are closely watching how they handle women's issues.

In Denver, several hundred people marched silently around the state Capitol. Kelly Warren brought her daughters, ages 3 and 12.

"We wanted to represent every marginalized woman whose voice doesn't count as much as a man's," said Warren, a sales associate in the male-dominated construction industry.

Some businesses and institutions said they would either close or give female employees the day off.

The owners of the Grindcore House in Philadelphia closed their vegan coffee shop, where eight of the 10 employees are women.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

"The place definitely wouldn't run without us," said Whitney Sullivan, a 27-year-old barista who planned to attend a rally.

In New York, a statue of a fearless-looking girl was placed in front of Wall Street's famous charging bull sculpture. The girl appeared to be staring down the animal. A plaque at her feet read: "Know the power of women in leadership. SHE makes a difference."

As part of the Day Without a Woman protest, women were also urged to refrain from shopping.

Some criticized the strike, warning that many women cannot afford to miss work or find child care. Organizers asked those unable to skip work to wear red in solidarity.

Monique LaFonta Leone, a 33-year-old health care consultant in Colorado Springs, Colorado, had to work but put on a red shirt and donated to charity, including Planned Parenthood.

"I have bills to pay, but I wanted to make my voice heard, no matter how quiet," she said. "I also wanted to make a statement to say that women are doing it for themselves. We're out here in the workforce and making a difference every day."

Trump took to Twitter to salute "the critical role of women" in the U.S. and around the world. He tweeted that he has "tremendous respect for women and the many roles they serve that are vital to the fabric of our society and our economy."

First lady Melania Trump marked the day by hosting a luncheon at the White House for about 50 women.

The White House said none of its female staff members skipped work in support of International Women's Day.

Lovely Monkey Tattoo, a female-owned tattoo parlor in Whitmore Lake, Michigan, offered tattoos with messages like "Nevertheless, She Persisted" - a reference to the recent silencing of Sen. Elizabeth Warren on the Senate floor - with proceeds going to Planned Parenthood.

Women make up more than 47 percent of the U.S. workforce and are dominant among registered nurses, dental assistants, cashiers, accountants and pharmacists, according to the census.

They make up at least a third of physicians and surgeons, and the same with lawyers and judges. Women also account for 55 percent of all college students.

At the same time, American women earn 80 cents for every dollar a man makes. The median income for women was $40,742 in 2015, compared with $51,212 for men, according to census data.

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A Day Without A Woman: https://www.womensmarch.com/womensday/

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Associated Press writers Phuong Le in Seattle; Mike Householder in Ann Arbor, Michigan; Michelle Smith in Providence, Rhode Island; William Mathis in New York City; Nick Riccardi in Denver; and Kevin Freking in Washington contributed to this report.

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Errin Haines Whack covers urban affairs for The Associated Press. Follow her work on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/emarvelous.

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