Women’s Strike Drew Close to a Quarter of Iceland’s Population

Arnarhóll hill women's strike 2023

Yesterday, a protest inspired by the 1975 Icelandic women’s strike took place in downtown Reykjavík. An officer with the Capital Area Police told Vísir that there had “never been such a crowd” gathered on Arnarhóll Hill and nearby streets.

The cause is just; the weather, fantastic

Yesterday, numerous women and non-binary persons in Iceland took the day off in order to participate in a demonstration inspired by the 1975 Icelandic women’s strike. The aim of the protest was twofold: eradicating gender-based violence and rectifying the undervaluation of so-called women’s professions.

Ásgeir Þór Ásgeirsson, Chief Superintendent of the Capital Region Police – who has overseen many gatherings in downtown Reykjavik over the past decades – told Vísir yesterday that he had never seen such a crowd in central Reykjavík: “There has never been such a crowd around Arnarhóll Hill and in the nearby streets – not even on Culture Night,” Ásgeir Þór stated.

As noted by Vísir, it is difficult to estimate the exact size of yesterday’s crowd. The police, monitoring the proceedings at its control centre with the aid of cameras, speculated that the number of demonstrators might have reached a six-figure number.

“Probably around 70,000-100,000 people,” Ásgeir Þór told Vísir. “We expected a large turnout, but this exceeded all expectations. After all, the cause is just, and the weather was, of course, fantastic.”