Blog, Social Justice

2021 Social Movements: Where They are Now

As we enter year three of the pandemic, we think it’s important to celebrate social progress wherever we can. If you followed current events last year, you know that 2021 was another big year for activism. Here is some background on social movements that captured headlines and our attention last year, including changes-in-progress and links to learn more. 

2021 Kellogg’s Strike

Keisha Richardson holds sign that says 'shame on kelloggs corporate greed'
Source: The Guardian

Approximately 1,400 Kellogg’s employees, who are members of the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers’ International Union (BCTGM), walked out of the four factories on October 5, 2021. The labor strike lasted 11 weeks, until December 21, 2021 when a new contract was ratified by union members. Increased wages and enhanced benefits were part of the agreement. The BCTGM president made clear that the agreement “makes gains and does not include any concessions.” 

Amazon Employee Strikes

new york, ny   march 04 people protest in support of amazon workers in alabama on march 04, 2021 in new york city amazon is the second largest employer in the united states   with 400,000 workers and about 13 million employees worldwide photo by emazviewpress
Source: Harper’s Bazaar

Amazon employees made multiple attempts to protest working conditions and wages in 2021, to no avail. Last April, Alabama employees made efforts to unionize, but those efforts were shot down when Amazon gathered more votes against them in the Bessemer election. However, we have since learned that Amazon unjustly interfered in last year’s election. A redo was held on February 4, 2022, but no results have been released yet.

This is not the first year that Amazon employees strike. 

India Farmers Protest 

Source: Time

The protest first formed in reaction to three Farm Bills passed by the Parliament of India in September 2020. These bills were considered to be “anti-farmer” by multiple farmer unions. Soon after this, union-organized protests began and grew into tens of thousands of union members marching to the nation’s capital. Protesters set up camps and blocked highways outside Delhi, capturing an international audience. In November 2021, the Farm bills were repealed. However, farmer unions are still fighting for better wages and guaranteed minimum support prices. 

Protests against Texas Heartbeat Act

Source: Fox 7 Austin

The Texas Heartbeat Act, or Senate Bill 8, makes abortion illegal around week 6 of pregnancy. After it went into effect in Texas on September 1, 2021, collective outrage sparked protests all over the country. Demonstrators from Washington to Austin gathered  in support of safe access to abortion. The law is in effect, and is being challenged in courts at this time. The Texas Supreme Court heard a narrow challenge (that is, a challenge based on very specific part of the law) on February 24, 2022. 

You can learn more about the bill, abortion, and how to help protect access to abortion here

Protests at COP26 Climate Summit 

Source: Al Jazeera

In Glasgow, Scotland, thousands of climate activists from around the world gathered outside of the United Nations climate summit in November 2021. They marched to call upon the world leaders to make the right decisions that could preserve the planet. Ultimately, the UN came to an agreement that activists are unhappy with.  To learn more about organizations working to solve the climate crisis and to possibly donate to them, click here

Nina Garcia is a reader, reviewer, and devoted coffee drinker from Texas. When she’s not reading or watching Netflix, she is working on writing projects, including a middle grade novel. Favorite genres: anti-racist and intersectional feminist non-fiction, science fiction, horror, and contemporary with elements of fantasy.

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