Women Leaders Band Together

Image source: Long Island Women's Diversity
Image source: Long Island Women’s Diversity

Several local women leaders have come together in an effort to enable women to break down divisive barriers that prevent inclusion and challenge unity with the formation of the Long Island Women’s Diversity Network, which will be holding a Women’s Diversity Summit on Saturday, March 24. The goal of the summit will be connect and empower Long Island women from diverse backgrounds, and to provide an opportunity to discuss and learn about the fight for equity, overcoming discrimination and promoting self-care.

“With the current political and social climate in this country, I feel it is more important than ever for everyone, especially women, to speak up and be active locally,” said Annie Phillips of Glen Cove. “After the women’s march in 2017, many of us were looking for ways to stay involved and motivated.”

The Long Island Women’s Diversity Network is a project of Every Child Matters and Action Together Long Island.

“The formation of this network will allow women a place to foster a unified and inclusive sisterhood that will begin the work of educating Long Islanders around issues and policies that impact many of our local communities,” said Shanequa Levin, Every Child Matters-LI campaign director and the Diversity Network’s chair, who was born and raised in Glen Cove. “We hope that by supporting activism and working together to address problems like equal economic opportunities and children’s issues, our members can raise greater awareness about the social justice movement here on Long Island.”

The summit will be held on Saturday, March 24, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Campus Center, SUNY Old Westbury. The summit will include interactive, experiential and engaging workshops, panels and presentations. For more information, visit www.liwomensdiversity.com/summit2018. The keynote speaker is Autumn Rose Miskweminanocsqua (Raspberry Star Woman) Williams, the current Miss Native American USA 2017-2018. During her year as Miss Native American USA 2017- 2018 she intendeds to travel as much as possible to spread her message of empowerment.

Phillips said she was invited to attend the initial planning meeting for the summit and was inspired to see so many diverse women from across Long Island coming together for the purpose of empowering women in this area.

“I am proud to be a part of this event and to work with this amazing group of women. And while we continue this journey to create an event that will empower and educate Long Island women, it has become much more than that,” said Phillips. “The Long Island Women’s Diversity Summit will also celebrate our differences and cultures and raise awareness that we are stronger together and can make a difference for ourselves and for our daughters.”

After the summit, there will be a student-led march at SUNY Old Westbury in conjunction with the national March For Our Lives movement.

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