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The Weather Network
Feb. 21, 2019 | Thursday
Local News
Women brave the cold during NOTL's first ever Women's March
Maya Nority singing Rise Up at NOTL's first Women's March. (Christina Manocchio/Niagara Now)

Women across the world marched in solidarity on Saturday, chanting change for women’s rights, LGBTQ+ rights, and a wide range of issues that affect women in different parts of the globe.

Locally, a small group toughed out the cold at Simcoe Park for Niagara-on-the-Lake's first ever women's march.

The group rallied down King Street to avoid Queen Street, which was closed off for the Icewine Village festival.

The afternoon featured guest speakers Lord Mayor Betty Disero, YWCA Niagara Region executive director Elizabeth Zimmerman, Zambian immigrant Natasha Mumba, and YWCA Montreal CEO Mel Thivierge, who covered a range of issues affecting women and basic equality both locally and abroad. Issues included the challenges in finding gender-neutral bathrooms, equal wages for women, and the challenges of being a female immigrant.

Event co-organizer Jacqueline Thair said women in Niagara-on-the-Lake — especially migrant workers — also face a number of gender issues, and there's "some racism and some homophobia" locally too.

She hopes the march might bring some awareness to issues locals may not be aware of.

Lord Mayor Betty Disero spoke about the never ending battle for gender equality and about her experiences with sexism, while Mumba read a thank you letter to her mother for strength in making decisions for herself as a woman, and the powerful influence that had on her.

The event ended with a performance by Maya Nority, who sang Rise Up by Andra Day. 

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