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happy international women’s day

March 8, 2014

Today marks the 103rd anniversary of International Women’s Day, a day dedicated to women and their contributions to the world.

At the beginning of the 20th century, when the first International Women’s Day was observed, women were being pushed into the workforce in record numbers due to a combination of factors including rapid economic and population growth, widespread poverty, and the need for cheap labour to fuel the industrial capitalist machine.

Women, who in many countries, including the US, still couldn’t vote, were often working 10-12 hours a day in deplorable, sweatshop-style conditions, sometimes even being locked in factories until their work was done. And during this time, many of the largest and most militant strikes were organized by women fighting for things like shorter hours, better pay, safer working conditions, the right to unionize, and the right to vote.

With all the progress that’s been made, it can be easy to forget how bad things were and how far we’ve come in just the last 100 years alone. But I think it’s important to remind ourselves every now and then of the contributions and struggles of working women in both the past and present, not only to honour those that fought so hard to get us where we are today, but to remind ourselves of the work that’s yet to be done.

So today, we celebrate and honour the contributions and struggles of women everywhere. Bread and Roses!

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