By Lemor Abrams

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — We found her in a sea of red, waving her sign, and clapping for the empowered women around her at the state Capitol, where she’s been so many times before. After all, Dale Stark started this fight, back in the 1960s.

“Here I am at the International Women’s Day rally at the Capitol, still protesting the same s— for the past 100 years,” said Stark.

Thirty years after becoming a pediatrician, Stark says women everywhere are still getting paid far less than their male counterparts, including her.

“The day after inauguration made it very clear that we can’t sit around anymore,” said Stark.

But on this Day Without A Woman, even the men in the crowd, including Assemblyman Jim Cooper in a pink hat, say women are more influential than ever before.

Some perspective from the state controller:

“Remember this, women control the purse strings. We are responsible for 70 percent of the decisions and households, and if that’s not power I don’t know what is,” said Controller Betty Yee.

Abigail Hakala of Sacramento was right there exercising that power. She recently made the tough decision to put work on hold for her kids, and feels for those working women who wish they could do the same.

“They should be having time off. They’re working because they’re afraid of getting fired, because they can’t afford to take the time off,” said Hakala.

The enthusiasm is carried over from Sacramento’s massive women’s march in January. Stark was there too. And be sure, she says, she’ll be at the next one.

“Well, nothing changes in a moment. It takes time to change. You don’t just go to one march and say things are going to change now,” said Stark.


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