Community Nurse

*Community Nurse will be a reoccurring feature on this site which will highlight opportunities for activism across the country* 

Combatting Bigotry: Activist Opportunities with Unite Women

Are you bothered by the nearly 1,000 anti-woman pieces of legislation proposed in the past two years?  Are you flabbergasted that the Violence Against Women Act is having trouble passing this session?  Are you livid over bigoted comments like abused women should “remember the better times” or LGBT individuals should be put behind “electric fences”?  Are discussions over the pill and birth control making you ask “this is 2012, right?!?  And not 1960?….”  Here is a chance to do something!

There are many wonderful groups in the United States and globally that combat inequality, but today, I want to spotlight a new grassroots women’s rights organization called Unite Women.  Seriously, this started from two women (Karen Teegarden and Desiree Jordan) discussing the conservative trend in society and politics.  They said to each other, “enough is enough” and started a Facebook group on February 19, 2012 (yes, less than 4 months ago).  In six weeks, women from across the country responded, and its membership swelled to 21,000.  Unite Women quickly became endorsed by many groups, such as the National Women’s Organization, the National Women’s Political Caucus, and the editor for The Nation.  Unite Women organized and held marches and rallies in almost all 50 of the states on April 28.  These rallies had many different speakers and musicians, and some interesting celebs helped promote the cause, including Susan Sarandon,  Sarah Silverman and Zach Galifianakis.

Now, Unite Women is moving forward.  Here is their new direction:

1. The Main Street USA Initiative: This is a public outreach campaign that will take place at community events between now and November. Activities will concentrate on getting information about women’s issues, and exactly how it impacts “Main Street” directly to the public. The educational information will include (but is not limited to) candidate voting records, literature on women’s issues, as well as details of how anti-women policy measures impact individuals, families and communities.
2. The Legislative Initiative: These are targeted campaigns to educate legislators on how their voters feel about specific pending women’s rights bills and let them know we are tracking their voting records. Unite Women will mobilize citizens to participate through petitions, civil actions, and getting out the vote.  College campus groups are being created to facilitate this goal.

Here is how you can get involved:

Web site:

State Facebook Groups you can join:

Twitter: @UniteWomenOrg

Blog Talk Radio:

I really hope you will join them and help combat inequality in the United States.

And just for fun – here is comedian Zach Galifianakis at a recent Unite Women rally in Los Angeles:

Women’s March in LA. Eric Garcetti, Flickr

*For transparency purposes, I am disclosing that I am involved in Unite Women as the State Director for Louisiana.

Ashley Baggett is a co-founder of Nursing Clio and is an assistant professor at North Dakota State University. She earned her PhD in history from Louisiana State University in 2014, and specializes in women’s history, gender studies, medical history, 19th-century United States, and southern history. She graduated with a BS in Secondary Education, Social Studies in 2003 and then taught middle and high school for five years before returning to grad school.