With a government shutdown in temporarily in place, emotions are high in preparation of today’s Women’s March Chicago’s March to the Polls kicking off this morning with a video montage about the importance of Illinois women running for office, celebrating this year’s surge of women candidates and mobilizing women to get out the vote for the March primaries and November midterm elections. The January 20 event will begin at Congress Parkway and Columbus Drive, the site of last year’s historic inaugural march.
Speakers and entertainers will energize women and their allies to amplify women’s voices in leadership, speak out against sexual harassment and assault in the workplace, and defend the rights of communities most under attack including LGBTQ, immigrants and refugees.
The rally and march is one of more than 350 actions planned worldwide during the weekend of January 20 and 21, 2018 (www.marchonthepolls.org).
“We are excited about the event and the program. Our speakers will rally participants around issues that concern us all and that we see bubbling up on our social media,” said Emily Kraiem, Women’s March Chicago’s Social Media Director.
9 a.m. Music and video.
11 a.m. Fawzia Mirza, Chicago actor, writer, and producer, returns as emcee.
Bryant Jones Choir, featuring Deborah Lane
The Cast of Hamilton, featuring Ari Asfar
Bridget Marie, ZaZaZa Disco
Cast Members from Second City’s She the People
Faces for Radio
Lights of Zion
Tahera Ahmad, Associate Chaplain and Director of Interfaith engagement, Northwestern University
Bridget Gainer, Cook County Commissioner
Lisa Madigan, Illinois Attorney General
Quiana McKenzie, Regional Campaign Finance Advisor, Emily’s List
Channyn Lynne Parker, Transgender Activist
Rep. Jan Schakowsky, U.S. House of Representatives
Rep. Bill Foster, U.S. House of Representatives
Chakena Sims, Board of Directors, Chicago Votes
Tom Steyer, Founder and President, NextGen America
K. Sujata, President and CEO, Chicago Foundation of Women
Celina Villanueva, New Americans Democracy Project, Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights
Suzette Wright, former Chicago Ford Assembly Plant employee
Kim Foxx, Cook County State’s Attorney
Anna Valencia, City Clerk of Chicago
Asha Binbek, Council on American-Islamic Relations – CAIR
Michelle Mbekeani-Wiley, League of Women Voters
12:30 – 1:30 March to Federal Plaza, 219 S. Dearborn St.
March will proceed west on Congress Parkway to Michigan Avenue, north to Jackson Boulevard, west to Dearborn Street, north to Randolph Street and west to Clark Street, south on Clark to Federal Plaza.
Route for participants with disabilities will proceed along Jackson Drive to Michigan Avenue.
Enter at Congress Parkway and Columbus.
Persons with Disabilities may enter at southwest corner of Monroe and Columbus. Accessible Viewing Area near rally stage will offer seating, space for those needing close proximity and/or access to ASL interpreters, Open Captioning, Assistive Listening Devices, and Audio Description. Available on first-come first-serve basis.
Warming center: Chicago Temple, Washington and Clark streets.
10 p.m. Friday through 2 p.m. Saturday:
● Columbus Drive, from Monroe Street to Balbo Drive
● Jackson Boulevard from Lake Shore Drive to Michigan Avenue.
● Westbound lane of Congress Parkway between Columbus Drive and Michigan Avenue.