Engaging with Cultural Holidays: March & April 2024

By Chatashia Brown, Manager, Diversity, Equity & Community Engagement

Women’s History Month

Women’s History Month is an annual celebration of the contributions women have made throughout American history. It began as Women’s History Week before Congress passed a law in 1987 to make March the official month to commemorate the vital role of women in the U.S.

In addition to Women’s History Month, the United Nations (U.N.) celebrates International Women’s Day annually on March 8. It was officially adopted by the U.N. in 1975. International Women’s Day is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for accelerating women’s equality. Learn more about International Women’s Day at International Women’s Day 2024.

In Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW), women play a significant role in the workforce and the economy. Making up over 50% of the population, they contribute to 63.1% of the civilian labor force and own or co-own 36% of small businesses, employing nearly 430,000 people and generating $21.7 billion in annual payroll. Additionally, 40% of DFW women hold a bachelor’s degree or higher. Recognized as the No. 2 U.S. Metro for growth of women business owners, DFW’s women are driving innovation and economic progress, shaping the region’s future.

Best Practices for Celebrating Women’s History Month in the Workplace

      • Acknowledge and celebrate women. Women’s History Month is a great time to highlight the contributions and achievements of women in various fields. This can be done through internal communications, social media posts, or dedicated events where employees can learn about and celebrate the accomplishments of women past and present, fostering a culture of appreciation and recognition.
      • Direct resources to women-owned businesses. Supporting women-owned businesses is a great way to empower women economically. During Women’s History Month, organizations can actively seek out partnerships with and allocate resources to women-owned businesses, thereby contributing to economic empowerment.


Ramadan is a month-long observance for Muslim communities around the world. During this month, Muslims commemorate the revelation of the Qur’an by engaging in heightened worship, prayer, and reading of the Qur’an, making it a time of profound spiritual renewal and growth. The exact dates of Ramadan vary each year, as they are based on the lunar Islamic calendar. This year, Ramadan is expected to begin on the evening of Friday, March 22, and will conclude on the evening of Saturday, April 20. Throughout this month, some Muslims fast from dawn until sunset, abstaining from food, drink, smoking, and sinful behavior. The end of the Ramadan fast is celebrated as Eid al-Fitr, the “Festival of the Breaking of the Fast.” Many Muslims attend a religious service, visit relatives and friends, and exchange gifts on this day.

Best Practices for Acknowledging Ramadan in the Workplace

      • Educate your team. As millions of Muslims worldwide observe the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, it presents a meaningful opportunity for organizations to demonstrate support for their Muslim colleagues. A fundamental step in fostering an inclusive environment is education. Informing your staff about Ramadan and what it entails can promote empathy and understanding.
      • Be flexible. Because fasting can affect energy levels and productivity, offering flexible working hours or the option to work from home can help accommodate those observing the fast. For guidance on best practices, the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) provides resources on religious accommodation in the workplace.
      • Be mindful of meeting and event timing. A great way to demonstrate support for fasting employees is to avoid scheduling mandatory meetings with meals or events around food during fasting hours. If possible, try to arrange work-related meals after sunset.

Equal Pay Day

Equal Pay Day symbolizes how far into the new year women must work to be paid what men were paid the previous year. Equal Pay Day for all women should be Dec. 31, but it’s not. This year, Equal Pay Day is Tuesday, March 12. Started by the National Committee on Pay Equity in 1996, the goal of Equal Pay Day is to raise awareness about the gender wage gap. Despite the efforts of the Equal Pay Act to eliminate pay discrimination, the wage gap remains.

Currently, women earn 84 cents for every dollar that men earn. That gap increases for Black women, making 69 cents, and Latinas, making 57 cents. In 2022, The Equal Pay Day Calendar was updated to include a broader cross-section of women, including those who work part-time or seasonally, to represent a more accurate picture of how the gender pay gap impacts diverse communities. Read more here.

To learn more about equal pay day and the gender wage gap, read & watch:

Fair Housing Month

April is recognized as National Fair Housing Month to commemorate the passage of the Fair Housing Act of 1968, which prohibits discrimination based on race, religion, national origin, disability, or family status. This year, we commemorate the 55th anniversary of the passage of the Fair Housing Act. Prior to the passage of the act, redlining of neighborhoods contributed to housing segregation, food deserts, and opportunity gaps in wealth, school, and health care for groups deemed to be off-limits for issuing mortgages. Despite the legislation, which is an extension of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, discrimination can still be found in certain communities for buyers and renters.

To learn more about fair housing month and the fair housing act, read & watch: