Former Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards has teamed up with Alicia Garza of Black Lives Matter and Ai-jen Poo of the National Domestic Workers Alliance to form a new women’s political action group ahead of the 2020 presidential election.
The organization, called Supermajority, will partner with different groups to educate and train two million women in activism and political participation across the country. According to a press release sent to ELLE.com, Supermajority not only aims to ensure a women’s agenda is represented at the ballot box in 2020, but also to drive change around issues like the wage gap, childcare costs, maternal mortality rates, family leave, and family separation at the border.
In a group interview with Richards, Garza, and Poo Monday morning, all three women pointed out that many of these issues are considered to be “social or soft,” and not national imperatives or emergencies. Over the next few months, Supermajority staffers will travel across the country compiling additional information on these issues for their agenda, which they’re calling a women’s “new deal.”
“Consistently, we’re still treated as a special interest group…Our voices aren’t breaking through,” Poo said. “Now, it’s time for women to run things.”
“Women are taking joy in the success of other women and excited about being in rooms learning about efforts and issues and activism that they may have never known before,” Richards echoed. “Women want to be together, they want to find out how to do more.”
Richards, who ran Planned Parenthood from 2006 to 2018, announced that the group’s first major partner is Pantsuit Nation, a women-led non-profit dedicated to tapping the power of storytelling to drive change. Today, 3.5 million people belong to Pantsuit Nation, which started in October 2016 as a digital safe space for Hillary Clinton supporters to engage in discourse about the presidential election. Supermajority will work with the group to build a “multiracial, intergenerational, national membership community of women who will mobilize for this agenda and amplify it across the country,” according to a press release.
Richards’s successor at Planned Parenthood, Leana Wen, also plans to get the organization involved with Supermajority, writing on Twitter that she’s “thrilled” about its launch.
Poo’s National Domestic Workers Alliance, which promotes the rights of the primarily female domestic work force of nannies, housekeepers, and home healthcare workers, could also work with Supermajority at some point. The Alliance has partnered up with other advocacy groups in the past, including Time’s Up, the group of Hollywood women fighting for workplace equality in the wake of the #MeToo movement.
“In this moment there’s not enough infrastructure [in] women’s organizing,” Garza says. “This is a time for all of [us]… #MeToo, Time’s Up, Black Lives Matter, the Women’s March, and Supermajority to link arms.”
Supermajority has recruited several women, including Lyric Chen, a strategic advisor with Planned Parenthood Action Fund, and Fatima Goss Graves, president of the National Women’s Law Center, to head Supermajority Education Fund’s leadership committee. The committee will invest in research aiming to expand civic engagement and increase active advocacy roles for women in the U.S.
“We are ready to take power, ” Garza says. “[We want to] bring women together to achieve change that we deserve.”