Amy Seaborn joined the women (and men) marching for equal rights in Sydney
“What do want? Equality! When do we want it? Yesterday!”
It’s 10:45 am, and the number of protesters gathered at the Archibald Fountain, in Sydney’s Hyde Park, is starting to grow.
As Divina Blanca, MC of the Sydney International Women’s Day March walks on to the stage, rain begins to fall. But that doesn’t stop her or the other speakers from passionately addressing the crowd.
By 11:45 am, it’s not that quiet any more. The excitement is starting to build. The march is about to begin.
The chanting starts.
“Stand up! Fight back!”
“What do we want? Equal rights! When do we want it? Now!”
The streets had police roadblocks. Cars had been stopped. Their occupants looked on as almost 1,500 people walked along Market and Castlereagh Streets.
Onlookers filmed the march and shouted along with the marchers.
Placards were waved around in the air. Marchers walked hand in hand. Passionate voices chanted. There were smiles on everyone’s faces.
There was a sense of unity among everyone in the march. A feeling of belonging.
Drummers from the group Asian Women at Work led the marchers, beating their drums in unison. Each drummer wore a big, warm smile.
As the marchers walked by, they smiled for the cameras, showing off their placards.
By 12:30 pm, all the marchers had reached their final destination, Belmore Park, near Central Station.
While it was the end of the march, chanting could still be heard.
It began to feel like school picture day: everyone posing together, with their placards.
Everyone began to mingle.
“We’re all friends here.”
Slowly, the numbers began the fade. But the message didn’t. Though some of the causes were different, they all had the same ultimate goal. Equal rights.