The Women’s March on Idaho in Boise Saturday is one of seven in the state and more than 600 across the nation and around the world that are coordinated with the national event in Washington. Most start at 10 a.m. local time.
All emphasize the national event’s themes of inclusion, diversity and human rights for all in response to the “divisive rhetoric of the past election cycle.”
The Boise group’s Facebook event page shows some 4,000 people interested in the event. Organizers expect 2,500 to attend.
“I didn’t really think any of this was possible, even a couple weeks ago,” said Colette Raptosh, a Capital High School junior. She and friend Nora Harren, a senior at Borah High School, formed “People for Unity” after the November election and were the driving force behind the Boise march.
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“It really opens your eyes,” Raptosh said. “I don’t think I saw as deeply or saw as many things as I’ve seen in the past two months.”
The Boise event starts with a welcome from organizers on the Capitol steps at 10 a.m., followed by a short march to Boise City Hall. There, speakers will include State Sen. Cherie Buckner-Webb and Rep. Melissa Wintrow, both Boise Democrats; Dianne Piggot, an LGBTQ activist; Jennifer Martinez, a Latina activist who ran for Congress last year, and Asmaa Albukaie, a Syrian refugee who resettled in Boise with her sons in early 2015. Activist Chelsea Gaona-Lincoln will offer a call to action to close the event.
Raptosh said organizers have been advised of possible protesters during the event and have received and offered training on how participants can to engage constructively, or just disengage.
Capitol Boulevard will be closed at times on Saturday morning during the event.