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Wyoming Women Strike

Wyoming Art Party

All across the country Wednesday, women, including some in Wyoming, went on strike in order to demonstrate their economic power as part of  “A Day Without Women.” The event coincided with International Women’s Day.

Laramie resident Heather Rockwell said she decided to take the day off from her job after she participated in the Women’s March in Cheyenne in January. She said she has never gone on strike before.

“I’m also an hourly worker,” said Rockwell. “So it’s sort of one those situations of if I don’t work, I don’t get paid. And I was willing to accept that.”

Rockwell opened up her home to other women on strike and provided postcards and stamps so they can use the time to write to their representatives. Lauren Hayes also took the day off and said she understands not every woman has that choice.

“There’s a lot of women who can’t take the day off, because they’re hourly workers, or because they have the type of job that they would be fired if they were to take a day off, or miss a day of work, or call in sick, particularly if a lot of them did,” said Hayes. “So I feel like if I can take the day off and do something with it, like writing postcards, contacting our representatives, I’m actually being productive in this sort of strike and I can help speak for them.”

Adrienne Vetter and June Glasson head up the Wyoming Art Party in Laramie. Both of them are visual artists, and instead of spending their usual time in the studio, the two of them also took the day off to hand out bright pink and red pins at a local coffee shop. Vetter said people are participating in a number of different ways. 

“Some women across the world are striking today,” said Vetter. “Others are just in solidarity wearing red, or shopping at women-owned businesses.”

According to U.S. census data, women make up more than 47 percent of the U.S. workforce.

Maggie Mullen is Wyoming Public Radio's regional reporter with the Mountain West News Bureau. Her work has aired on NPR, Marketplace, Science Friday, and Here and Now. She was awarded a 2019 regional Edward R. Murrow Award for her story on the Black 14.
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