WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) — It's International Women's Day but some groups aren't just celebrating one gender. A group of Purdue students and faculty say this day is about standing up for all vulnerable populations. Here's how they fought for equality Thursday.
If society can't stop a group of Purdue students and faculty from rallying, neither can the weather.
"This is, I think, winter's final stab at us, right?" said Purdue faculty member Megha Anwer.
But she said there's comfort in solidarity.
"We keep each other warm with each other's company," said Anwer.
Anwer said they're celebrating International Women's Day in three layers of solidarity.
"There's a global solidarity we are expressing which is with the 'Me Too' global campaign launched across the world," said Anwer. "There's also a national solidarity we are expressing with teachers going on strike. And locally, we are standing in solidarity with the janitors who are just launching a campaign for stronger contracts."
The petition is for janitors of all genders in Indianapolis who say they are working for less than $10 per hour.
"We are here not just for women. We are here for all vulnerable populations," said Anwer.
"We hope that they [the janitors] feel our solidarity with them," said Purdue student Jasmine Edison. "We'll be taking the petition we signed in support of them down there on March 24th."
The group of about 40 marched for equality Thursday, 15,000 women did in New York City on this day 110 years ago.
"We are definitely honoring the legacy that they've left and leaving our own here today as well," said Edison.
Although temperatures were cold, their message wasn't.
"We felt very empowered, very heard, especially marching through Purdue's Memorial Union," said Edison. "We got a lot of heads turned. So, hopefully we made an impact on the community today."
In addition to the rally held on campus, the group also hosted one Thursday at 4 p.m. in Riehle Plaza.