The South Queens Women’s March is bringing awareness on the importance of voting on Election Day.
The organization, which was established in January 2020, hosted a sign-holding event on Saturday, Oct. 17, outside of The Figure Studio, located at 111-49 Lefferts Blvd. in South Ozone Park, in coordination with the fifth Women’s March on Washington and 207 other protests held by sister actions in cities and communities across the nation.
The South Queens Women’s March highlights gender equality issues, specifically how women have suffered greatly under the Trump Administration and this has been even more so exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Aminta Kilawan-Narine, founder and executive director of the South Queens Women’s March, said women in the U.S. are bearing the brunt of multiple crises — including the COVID-19 pandemic, white supremacy and nationalism, an ever-deepening economic disaster, a worsening climate crisis and a family/domestic care crisis. From New York to California, women are rising up to demand a new government of, by, and for the people, according to Kilawan-Narine.
“We the people are going to deliver a democracy in November,” Kilawan-Narine said to attendees, encouraging them all to vote.
Kilawan-Narine is proud that her organization is able to bring accessible information to people in the community from all different backgrounds.
“Today, we really wanted to do something, even if it’s small, in south Queens because this is where we live,” Kilawan-Narine said. “We are joining together as women from all walks of life to vote in record numbers, demand that every single vote is counted, and return our democracy to its rightful state.”
An attendee at the event, Mohamed Amin, founder and executive director of the Caribbean Equality Project, said he created the organization after experiencing a hate crime incident with his brother in 2013 on Richmond Avenue.
The Caribbean Equality Project offers counseling, mental health, immigration support and more for LGBTQ in Richmond Hill.
“Why do we have to leave our Caribbean, immigrant community to access mental health services and to seek support?” said Amin, who realized after the incident that there wasn’t a space for LGBTQ voices to be heard, particularly immigrants.
According to Kilawan-Narine, they will fight to secure the progress they have made as a country.
“We have suffered through years of crisis compounded upon crisis, and we have had enough,” Kilawan-Narine said. “We are rising up here in our own community to take our power back. We commit ourselves to fight to secure immigrant rights, LGBTQ+ rights, reproductive rights, women’s rights, and the lives of black and brown people across this nation which has run afoul at the hands of law enforcement.”