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WHEREAS, women play a vital role in worldwide social, economic, cultural, and political development; and
WHEREAS, International Women’s Day, celebrated each year during Women’s History Month, is recognized globally and marks a call to action for accelerating gender parity; and
WHEREAS, International Women’s Day has been observed since 1911 and serves as a reminder of the important progress women have made towards equality in areas such as academia and athletics; as well as government and politics; and
WHEREAS, the 2020 theme of International Women’s Day, #EachforEqual, focuses on collective individualism and calls for people around the world to strike the #EachforEqual pose in a call to action for an equal world; and
WHEREAS, the World Bank Data report on World Development Indicators found 48.6% of females participated in the workforce in 2017, accounting for all global participation from females ages 15 and older; and
WHEREAS, women remain underrepresented in fields such as Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM); and
WHEREAS, expanding and developing opportunities for women to enter fields such as STEM is critical; and
WHEREAS, International Women’s Day is an opportunity to acknowledge and amplify the progress made to advance women’s equality, and to expand opportunities for women in today’s society;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Ralph S. Northam, do hereby recognize March 8, 2020, as INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY in our COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA, and I call this observance to the attention of all our citizens.