Representation matters at every level of leadership, and we are inspired by the historic political gains that women, especially Black women, have made across our state and nation.
Without a doubt, the election showed us the power of Black women. Black women running for office. Black women organizing get out the vote efforts. And Black women voting.
- The 2020 voter turnout is the highest in over a century.
- This election showcased incredible Georgia get out the vote organizing done by Black women.
- Former Tacoma Mayor Marilyn Strickland, who became the first Black person to represent Washington State at the federal level and the first Korean American woman elected to U.S. Congress.
- The number of Black women in Washington State’s Legislature has tripled, rising from two to seven, and Black representation in Olympia overall could rise from 2.7% to 6.8%.
- Cori Bush, a Black Lives Matter activist who just became the first Black woman to represent Missouri in Congress, said it well in her passionate acceptance speech. "To the Black women, the Black girls, the nurses, the essential workers, the single mothers: This is our moment."
We’re also bolstered by success at the local level. YWCA joined Charter for Justice to endorse the King County charter amendments on the ballot to reform policing, expand affordable housing, promote restorative justice, and support anti-discrimination protections – all of which passed.
As we begin to move forward from this election, we recognize the work doesn’t end here - we’re only getting started. Creating equity in our community requires collective, consistent action and a steadfast commitment to breaking down the barriers in housing, economic advancement, health, and safety for women and girls. Together, we must push our elected and public officials toward policies that support women in our community, and hold them accountable to the voices and priorities of those who are furthest from equity.
Today and every day, we will fight to advance solutions that dismantle both the root cause and everyday symptoms of systemic racial and gender-based injustice.
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Annalee Schafranek is the Marketing & Editorial Director at YWCA. She contributes agency news, press releases, and media coverage to the website. Annalee’s educational and professional experience has always focused on the place where gender equity and media meet.
We tell the stories of those with lived experiences of racism and sexism and invite supporters to take concrete actions to correct the root causes of disparity in our communities.