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International Women’s Day

International Women’s Day: March 8

What is International Women’s Day?
International Women’s Day (IWD), celebrated every year on March 8, aims to focus global attention on the state of women when it comes to gender equality, bias, stereotypes and discrimination. IWD also honors the cultural, political, and socioeconomic achievements of women.

International Women’s Day is commemorated in a variety of ways worldwide; it is a public holiday in several countries, and observed socially or locally in others.

What is the International Women’s Day history?
According to the United Nations, International Women’s Day started in America in 1909, when the Socialist Party of America took to the streets to honor garment workers who had protested against inhumane working conditions the year before. They called it National Women’s Day, and it took place on February 28. The following year, the Social International established Women’s Day in Copenhagen to celebrate those working for women’s rights and universal suffrage.

In 1911, Austria, Denmark, Germany, and Switzerland celebrated the first official International Women’s Day on March 19. More than one million people attended rallies focused on suffrage, representation, education, and workers’ rights.

Over the next few years, more countries in Europe marked the holiday on March 8. It wasn’t until March 8, 1975, when, during International Women’s Year, the United Nations celebrated it as an official holiday. Since 1975, the holiday has gained awareness around the globe as a way to recognize women.

What is the International Women’s Day theme for 2022?
The International Women’s Day theme for 2022 is #BreaktheBias, which highlights the importance of challenging biases and misconceptions in the interest of creating a more inclusive and gender-equal world. Recent themes include: #ChoosetoChallenge 2021, #EachforEqual in 2020, and #BalanceforBetter in 2019. In 2018, the theme of International Women’s Day was #PressforProgress, the 2017 Women’s Day theme was #BeBoldforChange, and the 2016 theme was #PledgeforParity.

The UN also issued a 2022 theme: “Gender equality today for a sustainable tomorrow.” The UN’s 2022 theme celebrates girls and women who are leading the charge toward a more sustainable future, and climate change response efforts.