Some employers have come out in support of female employees who want to participate. Sunrun, the California-based home solar power company, is giving all its employees the option to take the day off to participate. The company has also recently joined the Equal Pay Pledge, in which companies commit to annual company-wide gender-pay analysis in order to reduce the gender pay gap. “Equality and opportunity for women are part of our DNA,” said Lynn Jurich, the co-Founder and CEO of Sunrun. “We feel it is extremely important to support equitable treatment in and out of the workplace at all times.”
A number of media companies are also being vocal about their participation. The female staff at the blog Jezebel are striking and participating in protests, leaving their male colleagues to run the site for the day. Writers at The Onion Inc., which includes AV Club, will be striking to show the “chronically undervalued labor [women] perform both in the office and in our personal lives.” The music network MTV is also participating, including flipping the M in its logo into a W. The company’s social-media account is on strike:
The L.A. Times reports that United Talent Agency is encouraging female staff members to “spend the day as she sees fit,” and holding off-site gender-equality discussions in New York and Los Angeles. A restaurant in Pittsburgh will be giving its female employees the day off with pay. Ryan Murphy, the creator of Scream Queens and American Horror Story, tweeted that women will be taking the day off at his production company:
Several school districts are closing in order to facilitate leave requests from staffers who plan on participating. In northern Virginia, schools are closed in one district after 300 staff members requested the day off for the protest. Similarly, the Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools in North Carolina declared Wednesday an “optional teacher workday” during which students should stay home. Some 1,700 staff members in Prince George’s County Public schools in Maryland requested leave, leading that district to close for the day as well. A walkout at Rutgers University calls for professors, staff, and students to gather for a teach-in. Rallies have been planned in at least 10 U.S. cities.
The protest on Wednesday stems from the efforts of the organizers of last month’s Women March on Washington. The group called for a national walkout a month ago to coincide with International Women’s Day. On their website, the organizers wrote that the protest is aimed at “recognizing the enormous value that women of all backgrounds add to our socio-economic system—while receiving lower wages and experiencing greater inequities, vulnerability to discrimination, sexual harassment, and job insecurity.”