CLEVELAND — Organizers of the 2021 Women's March Cleveland said this year's event will bring awareness to a host of issues having an impact on women in Cleveland and across the county.
Community activist and event organizer Kathy Wray Coleman told News 5 violence against women will be a key focus of the march.
“The march will address a series of problems, from stand your ground legislation, to violence against women, to the Tamir Rice case," Wray Coleman said. “Young black women are popping up dead all over the place in Cleveland, there’s no dialogue about it. You don’t hear city council members speaking about it, you don’t hear the chief of police saying a lot about it."
She added, “there is an epidemic of black women being murdered, particularly women 25 and under. Five women who were murdered along East 93 Street and we can’t find their killers. "We will also celebrate the election of Vice President Kamala Harris.”
Sandra Dawkins of Cleveland will also be part of the march, her daughter, 22-year-old Britney Dawkins Hardwick, was shot and killed in her vehicle on Dec. 12. Her car was parked in her mother's driveway when the shooting took place.
Police have still not made any arrests in the case.
"Enough people saw who did this, this crime should have been solved, people should have been arrested and nothing has happened as of yet,” Dawkins said. "Those of you who know what happened and know Britney, you know how much she was loved, you know what you have done.”
Black on Black Crime Inc. President Al Porter urged men to support the women's march and had a message for those men who are part of the violence problem.
“You know if you are doing something abusive, I am asking and employing you to get help for yourself," Porter said. "I am also saying to women who are listening, do not sympathize with your abusers.”
Coleman said the march will feature several speakers, including leaders of women's groups, advocates, victims and candidates for the 11th Congressional District seat currently held by Congresswoman Marcia Fudge, who has now been nominated as the next Secretary of HUD.
Women's March Cleveland 2021 will take place on Saturday, Jan. 23, starting at 1 PM from Market Square, at the Corner of W. 25 Street and Lorain Avenue, across from the West Side Market in Cleveland.
Meanwhile, Dawkins had a strong message for parents who are aware their children are in an abusive relationship.
“Do all you can to get them out of there," Dawkins said. "I know they don’t listen to you a lot of times, but you keep on and don’t stop, so your child, your young daughter, doesn’t end up dead.”