This article originally appeared on Time.
Tamika Mallory, Linda Sarsour, Carmen Perez and Bob Bland were arrested early Wednesday afternoon after a day of loud but orderly protests for “A Day Without a Woman,” a strike the group organized to mark IWD. The organizers, as well as several other protesters, had been sitting in the street near the Trump Hotel at Columbus Circle, disrupting traffic. A representative for the four activists confirmed the arrests.
At least a thousand women gathered at 5th Ave and 59th St to protest the unfair treatment of women. Outside of rallies, those participating in “Day Without a Woman” were asked to stay home from work, wear red, and avoid spending money.
“I’ve always celebrated International Women’s Day, but this is the first time I’ve actually come out to march,” said Liz Walsh, 41, who stayed home from her job at Human rights Watch to participate in the strike. Her friend Heather Hardin, 38, an interior designer, also skipped work today.
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“There hasn’t been a true opportunity to make a difference like this,” Hardin said. “This is our civil rights movement.”
The New York rallies were one of many taking place across the nation and the world.
In San Francisco, hundreds of women dressed in red swarmed City Hall, holding signs that said “Love Will Win” and “Here’s to Strong Women” and “Hear Us Roar!” and “We Are Greater Than Fear.” Some signs had affirming messages for immigrants written in several languages (“No matter where you are from, we’re glad you’re our neighbor”), and two women held a giant black-and-white banner that simply said: RESIST. The crowd erupted when Christine Pelosi, the daughter of House minority leader Nancy Pelosi, said her her mother had just led a walk-out of women in Congress.
Speakers at the rally touched on the broad range of issues that drew women to streets. Shannon Coulter, cofounder of the #GrabYourWallet boycott encouraging shoppers not to spend their money at retailers who do business with the Trump family, noted that women are responsible for 70% or more of consumer purchasing decisions in the country. “You may not feel powerful,” Coulter said. “But you are powerful.”
Others spoke about the fight over access to reproductive healthcare, equal pay, violence against women, education for their daughters and the deportation of women immigrants. And while some attendees said the Trump administration had little to do with their decision to protest, far more seemed moved by a sense of direct response.
“I find this administration appalling on literally every level,” said YouTube employee Katie Bush, who attended with other Google employees. “Just the inequality and bigotry and sexism and misogyny and Islamophobia and homophobia …” Many colleagues who couldn’t take the day off, she said, still shut down their emails with an out-of-office message to support those who did.
Two women, carrying a sign that said “Remember Our Struggle” for the suffragettes, came dressed as Statues of Liberty—draped in chains. “We feel our liberties are being threatened by the current administration,” said Barbara Skinner, who works at a non-profit and a rental company. Her sister-in-chains, Pamela Crawford, agreed, saying she showed up to be seen and counted.
“It’ll give other women more courage, to get involved, write their congressman, write their senators,” Crawford said. “Every person can make a difference.”
With reporting by Katy Steinmetz/San Francisco