Marching Forward ~ A Better Balance

A Better Balance
The Women’s March and What Comes Next

ABB Staff & Friends March with ABB Co-President Sherry Leiwant in NYC.

The Women’s March

Last weekend we marched with thousands of women and men across the country in support of equality and justice for all. In NYC, a group of ABB staff and friends joined in the march and took the opportunity to speak with young women about their workplace rights, because KNOWLEDGE IS POWER. We encouraged them to reach out to us for more resources like our new New York Working Woman’s pocket guide.

The guide—which has been featured in Forbes and shared widely on social media—provides a user-friendly way for women to understand their rights in the workplace, from sexual harassment to equal pay to paid family leave to healthcare coverage, and much more!

In Nashville the march, attended by 15,000 people, was preceded by a conference that ABB co-sponsored. The conference included panels on activism, organizing, and legislative skills.  ABB’s Elizabeth Gedmark was a presenter.

Patricia Garcia & Madeleine Gyory marching in New York City

Elizabeth Gedmark marching in Nashville, TN after the conference

Elizabeth Gedmark presenting at Nashville’s Women’s March 2.0 Power Together TN Conference

The Kentucky Pregnant Workers’ Rights Act

Inspired by our former client Police Officer Lyndi Trischler’s story, This bill, SB 38, would ensure pregnant workers in the state do not have to choose between their health and their jobs. ABB is part of a robust and diverse coalition advocating for the bill, which has received bipartisan support after being introduced this month.

ABB Co-President Dina Bakst spoke on a panel with partners from Planned Parenthood, Eleanor’s Legacy, and Emerge New York.

The 2018 NY State Women’s Opportunity Agenda

On January 11, Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul and Secretary to the Governor Melissa DeRosa hosted an event at the New York Historical Society to announce Governor Cuomo’s Women’s Opportunity and Rights Agenda for 2018, which outlines dozens of proposals to advance the rights of women and girls in the State, including an end to sexual harassment in the workplace and the need for pay equity. As part of the event, ABB co-president Dina Bakst joined partners, including Planned Parenthood and Eleanor’s Legacy, on a panel to discuss how to turn these goals into lasting change.

Paid Sick Time

We’re working to expand the right to paid sick time across the country, including what could be the first sick time law in Texas, an ordinance recently introduced in Austin. ABB Co-President Sherry Leiwant spoke at a recent town hall meeting to launch the campaign for paid sick time in Westchester County, NY.

Dilini Lankachandra presenting at a workshop for advocates on how to defend progressive local policies against state preemption attempts.

Creating Change

This week, we are participating in the National LGBTQ Task Force’s 30th annual Creating Change Conference in Washington, D.C. ABB’s Dilini Lankachandra is co-presenting a workshop for advocates on how to defend progressive local policies against state preemption attempts, while Preston Van Vliet is helping to lead an interactive movement building workshop on how LGBTQ families can ground their experiences within a historical U.S. public policy context using racial, gender, and economic justice lenses.

lawmakers consider … Northgate Ped/Bike Bridge, Housing Affordability

Washington Chapter


Northgate: Before the Northgate bicycle/pedestrian bridge can proceed, the agreement between the City of Seattle and North Seattle College on alignment and design needs to be finalized. Transit, bike, and neighborhood advocates have been working the last five years to make this much-needed bridge a reality in time for the opening of the light rail line to Northgate. The Seattle Department of Transportation has revised the bridge design  and is now working to secure an easement from the College. Find out how the latest design update can serve walkers and bicyclists, and what challenges remain to bringing the project to its final form. 

Mandatory Housing Affordability (MHA): The City of Seattle has proposed a policy called “Mandatory Housing Affordability”, which requires developers to build a set percentage of affordable housing (or contribute to an affordable housing fund) when they build a new development. The policy is designed with the goal of ensuring that new growth that occurs will include more affordable housing. Throughout 2018, the City will work to engage the public in neighborhoods with proposed changes.


Team Adam ~ Why Samantha Bee apologized to Adam

We don’t know about you, but if it wasn’t for the comedians, we might all go mad these days.

This week on Full Frontal, Samantha Bee sent her correspondents around the world to find those who President Trump has wronged in the past two weeks, and apologize on behalf of America. Correspondent Ashley Nicole Black paid a visit to Adam in the nation’s capital to apologize for Trump’s demeaning tweets.

Check out this clip of Adam on Full Frontal’s “Apology Race” here:

–Team Schiff


Shut down ivory island!


Rewan Al-Haddad – Avaaz



The biggest ivory bust in decades happened recently in Hong Kong — 1000 elephants were slaughtered for that one shipment! The government wants to ban this awful trade and will vote in days — but they need massive public backing to stand up to the powerful ivory lobby. That’s us! Add your name — Avaaz will hit Hong Kong with ads and stir up a media frenzy — let’s shut down ivory island!


Dear friends,

The biggest ivory bust in decades happened recently in Hong Kong. 1000 elephants were murdered for one shipment(!), only to end up as little trinkets on people’s bookshelves!

Hong Kong is like ivory island — home to a booming trade in their butchered body parts. As long as it’s legal, more and more beautiful elephants will be slaughtered. At this rate, they could literally be extinct in 10 years.

The government wants to ban this awful trade, but industry lobbyists are making it a nightmare. Our massive community can drown out their baseless arguments, give the government the backing they need, and save thousands more elephants from death, but it will take each one of us to make it big enough.

There’s just days until the vote! Let’s build a mega-petition to save the elephants, then Avaaz will hit Hong Kong with ads, target politicians with advocacy, and stir up a media frenzy. Add your name and share widely — let’s shut down ivory island!

Tell Hong Kong — ban ivory for good!

Our amazing movement has played a massive role in the fight to save elephants from extinction. Now even China, the world’s biggest ivory market, is banning it!

But to save the elephants, it needs to be banned everywhere. Since it’s still legal in Hong Kong, buyers from China just hop over and buy their knick-knacks from there instead — Chinese buyers make up 90% of Hong Kong’s bustling ivory market!

We can close the market in Hong Kong — there’s already genuine political will to pass the ban, now we need a crazy huge outcry to show officials that the entire world is calling on them to ban ivory.

There was a time when 25 million elephants roamed around Africa. Now an elephant dies every 15 minutes! It’s outrageous and tragic all at once. Let’s help stop it. Add your name and tell everyoneit’s time to shut down this ivory island:

Tell Hong Kong — ban ivory for good!

We’re in a fight against time. Our movement has just rallied around an incredible fundraiser to bring evidence proving Europe’s ivory trade is fuelling the poaching crisis. But if we don’t stand up for the elephants again and again, they will be soon be gone. It’s up to us, let’s not let these beautiful creatures down.

With hope,

Rewan, Danny, Nataliya, Luca and the entire Avaaz team

More information:

Hong Kong launches bill to ban domestic ivory trade (The Guardian)

An African ranger’s message to Hong Kong’s ivory traders: Stop this now, “preferably today” (Quartz)

Ivory buyers will ‘wipe out elephants in 10 years’ says wildlife expert, pointing blame at Chinese traders (South China Morning Post)

Elephants on the path to extinction (The Guardian)