The Women's March On Washington Picks Its Start

by Abby Johnston

Although many of the details are still up in the air, the organizers of the Women's March on Washington have settled on a place to start their rally. The march, which will happen the day after the inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump, has yet to pick a specific route for its expected hundreds of thousands of participants, but the Jan. 21 demonstration knows that it will make its presence known to Congress.

The permit for the march was secured this week, and organizers, who were already expecting 100,000 people, put their bid in for a rally even double that size. D.C. police confirmed that they approved an application for the march to begin at Third Street SW and Independence Avenue, which is just in front of the U.S. Capitol. Organizers said that they plan to march down Independence Avenue, but haven't released other details about the route.

"Ultimately we want to have the attention focused on Congress and lifting up our concerns to them,” Janaye Ingram, the head of logistics for the Women’s March on Washington, told the Washington Post. Ingram also said that the organizers want to send a message of women's equality to all branches of government.

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As the Post notes, the organizers hope that having a firm starting location will help ease any fears of people who wanted to march but were afraid to book travel plans for something that was still so up in the air. Planning the march just after the inauguration has been tricky for organizers. Many of the monuments in D.C. are managed by the National Parks Service, which has been planning for the inauguration up to a year in advance and submit permits on behalf of the inauguration committee to use the areas. For example, the group initially wanted to rally at the Lincoln Memorial, but their plans interfered with other plans surrounding the inauguration. Twenty other groups have applied for permits to rally on National Parks Land on and around the Jan. 20 inauguration.

That visibility will be important to send a message to Congress, if not the president, that women demand to be respected and treated equally, and that they are willing to show up en masse to prove their determination. That's why the location of the march is so significant, and securing a spot right in front of the Capitol will assure that Congress will pay attention.