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Capital Region women prepare for march in D.C.

Capital Region women prepare for march in D.C.

Capital Region women prepare for march in D.C.
Photographer: via Facebook

Thousands of women are expected to descend on Washington D.C. next month after Inauguration Day, and dozens from the Capital Region are expected to join them.

Dozens of women from the Capital Region are planning to be among the rally-goers at the Women’s March on Washington next month. The rally is scheduled for Jan. 21, 2017, one day after President-Elect Donald Trump’s inauguration. Community members said they hope the event serves as a platform for making their concerns known.

“I hope it makes people aware that it’s not just a matter of sour grapes, we want a government that represents all of us,” said Marie Miklic, a teacher from Burnt Hills who plans to attend the rally.

Miklic said she’s been a Hillary Clinton supporter since the 1990s, and expressed displeasure with many of Trump’s recent cabinet appointments. She’s hopeful that as many women as possible travel to Washington D.C. in an effort to voice their grievances, she said.

She said demonstrators will be non-violent, and will be there to let Trump know that they’ll be watching him and making their voices heard.

Rally Bus, a New York City-based website that helps organize group bus trips, has multiple Capital Region locations where rally-goers can meet to travel to the event. One bus will depart from Saratoga Springs at 1:46 a.m. on Jan. 21, while another will leave from the Holiday Inn in Schenectady shortly after that.

Siheun Song, president of Rally Bus, said the company has already received more than 27,000 bookings nationwide for people looking to travel to D.C. for the event.

The rally is expected to draw thousands of people, though much of the National Mall, Pennsylvania Avenue, the Washington Monument and Lincoln Memorial will be unavailable. 

According to multiple media reports, the National Park Service, on behalf of the Presidential Inauguration Committee, filed a blocking permit to secure those spots for the days and weeks surrounding Inauguration Day.

As a result, those locations will be unavailable for the women’s march, which was originally expected to be held at the Lincoln Memorial, according to a Facebook event. 

Stacey Midge, associate pastor at the First Reformed Church in Schenectady, said she thinks the restrictions are unfortunate, though not surprising.

“I know part of it has to do with security concerns, but I think when one of the concerns people have is suppression of opposing voices, I think it’s unfortunate they haven’t granted permits,” she said.

Midge is considering attending the march next month herself, and echoed Miklic’s concerns about some of Trump’s cabinet appointments and policy suggestions. Midge is worried that many of Trump’s choices threaten to silence voices that already marginalized.

As a result, Midge said she thinks it’s an important time to speak up and take a public stand against those policies.

“I hope people take away from it a sense that their voice can be seen and heard, even when they’re not holding the elected offices at a given time,” she said.

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