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Take action for equality on International Womens Day

Take action for equality on International Women's Day

 March 03, 2022

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Imagine a gender equal world. A world free of bias, stereotypes and discrimination. A world that's diverse, equitable, and inclusive. A world where difference is valued and celebrated.

This is the aspirational vision promoted on International Women’s Day (IWD). Celebrated each year on March 8, the event commemorates the cultural, political, and socioeconomic achievements of women.

A long history of fighting for women's rights 

International Women’s Day has been observed since the early 1900s - a time of great expansion and turbulence in the industrialized world that saw booming population growth and the rise of radical ideologies.

Great unrest and critical debate was occurring amongst women. Women's oppression and inequality was spurring women to become more vocal and active in campaigning for change. Then in 1908, 15,000 women marched through New York City demanding shorter hours, better pay and voting rights.

In accordance with a declaration by the Socialist Party of America, the first National Woman's Day (NWD) was observed across the United States on 28th February, 1909. Women continued to celebrate NWD on the last Sunday of February until 1913.

In 1910 a second International Conference of Working Women was held in Copenhagen. A woman named Clara Zetkin (Leader of the 'Women's Office' for the Social Democratic Party in Germany) tabled the idea of an International Women’s Day. She proposed that every year in every country there should be a celebration on the same day - a Women's Day - to press for their demands.

The conference of over 100 women from 17 countries, representing unions, socialist parties, working women's clubs - and including the first three women elected to the Finnish parliament - greeted Zetkin's suggestion with unanimous approval and thus International Women’s Day was the result.

Taking action against gender bias

The theme for 2022 is: #BreakTheBias, which calls on women and allies around the world to celebrate women's achievement, raise awareness against bias and take action for equality.

Whether deliberate or unconscious, bias makes it difficult for women to move ahead. Knowing that bias exists isn't enough. Action is needed to level the playing field.

International Women’s Day encourages people to strike the #BreakTheBias pose by crossing their arms in a commitment to calling out bias, smashing stereotypes, breaking inequality, and rejection discrimination.

Show solidarity on International Women's Day

What else can individuals do to show solidarity on International Women’s Day?

Accessible to all, these activities pose an opportunity for individuals, companies, governments, charities, academic institutions, and communities to come together to fight for women's rights.

Companies show their support

International Women’s Day 2022 is supported by corporate partners that advocate for women's equality in the workplace, local communities and wider society all year round.

  • LinkedIn is the world's largest professional network with nearly 800 million members in more than 200 countries and territories worldwide. LinkedIn believes people with equal talent should have equal access to opportunity. Together, with its customers and members, LinkedIn is focused on tackling the systemic barriers that hold women and their careers back. 
  • HCL Technologies is a next-generation global technology company that helps enterprises reimagine their businesses for the digital age. Their technology products, services, and engineering are built on four decades of innovation, with a world-renowned management philosophy, a strong culture of invention and risk-taking, and a relentless focus on customer relationships. Women's empowerment is an important part of HCL's holistic diversity agenda. 
  • John Deere is a world leader in providing advanced products, technology and services for customers whose work is revolutionizing agriculture and construction - those who cultivate, harvest, transform, enrich and build upon the land to meet the world's increasing need for food, fuel, shelter and infrastructure. To forge such change, John Deere embraces a culture in which diversity, equity, and inclusion provide the fuel for innovation, opportunity, and teamwork. 

Play a part in shaping a gender-equal future

There's urgent work to do - and we can all play a part. 

Make every day International Women’s Day by thinking globally and acting locally. 

Do your bit to ensure that the future for girls is bright, equal, safe and rewarding.

Is your employer a supporter of women's equality?

International Women’s Day is a good time to reflect on whether your employer is supporting you both personally and professionally. 

Take the next step in your career ambitions with a prime employer.


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Disclosure: Where Women Work researches and publishes insightful evidence about how its paid member organizations support women's equality.


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