Democratic organization hosts women’s march alongside nationwide demonstrations

Some of the dozens of attendees cross Valencia Boulevard as they participate in the woman's march in Valencia on Saturday, 100221. Dan Watson.The Signal

People across the country took to the streets to march ahead of the United States Supreme Court’s reconvening to show outrage over Texas Senate Bill 8 —  which limits abortions — and the Santa Clarita Valley was no exception.  

The Democratic Alliance for Action of Santa Clarita organized its march in tandem with marches across the nation on Saturday. Approximately 130 people from the SCV, and a few from outside the area, showed up on the corners of McBean Parkway and Valencia Boulevard to decry Texas’ bill and march to Santa Clarita City Hall.   

As of Sept. 1, Texas has limited abortion care beyond six weeks of pregnancy. The state also introduced a program encouraging residents to inform of any illegal abortion practices, and in doing so receive financial compensation. 

“I was outraged, and it’s not just that Texas is against abortion,” said Diane Shaw, a board member of DAA and an SCV resident since 1988. “(Texas) said, ‘We’ll pay a $10,000 bounty for snitching on poor teenagers and ruining their family life, and destroying communities.’ … It’s a misuse of government. It’s a step into darkness.”  

Sally Swiatek, 60, of Newhall, has worked for Planned Parenthood for many years and has attended multiple women’s marches in the past.  

“This is about conditions for children in America,” Swiatek said. “And how the pro-life movement wants to secure viability for children, but they don’t want to secure the resources for families to raise healthy, safe and educated children. It’s a double standard.”  

She added that although Roe v. Wade was decided in 1973 to provide women access to legal abortions, at the same time schools do not offer a comprehensive sex health education.   

“The fact that we take away these rights, at this stage of their pregnancy, is criminal, because we also don’t educate women about prevention, and all of the choices that they have access to,” Swiatek said.  

She said the issue is personal because she made the difficult choice of having an abortion. “(Roe v. Wade) allowed me to plan for a family when I was emotionally stable to do so when I was able to provide intentional care, as a mother to my children.”  

Paxton Vivian Downn, 20, of Saugus, came with her parents to support the action.   

“I just wanted to come out everyone’s supporting other women and everyone else for their rights, and just ensuring that nothing like that happens anywhere else, especially California or anywhere else,” she said.  “Women need to stick together. We all need to look out for each other. Feminism helps both men and women.” 

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