Virginia has historical opportunity to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment: statewide campaign launches August 26th to coincide with Women’s Equality Day.
Sunday, August 26, 2018, #VAratifyERA launches its campaign for Virginia’s ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment on Women’s Equality Day with celebrations around the state. After Nevada’s ratification in 2017 and the Illinois ratification on May 30, 2018 only one more state is required for complete ratification.
Celebrations will include showing a movie, filmed in Virginia, that follows Alice Paul (Hilary Swank) and her fellow suffragists as they compel passage of the Nineteenth Amendment, which gave women the right to vote. “We are focusing on Alice Paul because of her bravery and steadfast resolve to achieve women’s equality under the law,” said Kati Hornung, campaign coordinator of VAratifyERA, a non-partisan campaign focused solely on Virginia’s ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment.
#VAratifyERA challenges Virginians to realize Alice Paul’s vision of full equality by demanding passage of her Equal Rights Amendment. According to a 2015 poll 94% of Americans support gender equality in the Constitution and 80% mistakenly believe it is already there. (Source: https://tinyurl.com/VAratifyERA2015Poll)
Kati Hornung states, “Justice Scalia and his friend and colleague Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg have both gone on record noting gender discrimination is not prohibited in the Constitution. When Justices on opposite sides of the political spectrum agree on something this fundamental, the rest of us should pay attention.”
Delegate Jennifer Carroll Foy (D-Woodbridge), a House member hosting one of the celebrations insists passing the Equal Rights Amendment is one of the great civil rights issues of our time. Delegate Carroll Foy added: “All women deserve the same Constitutional protection from discrimination as is already bestowed to race, religion and country of origin.”
Women’s Equality Day was established by Congress in 1971 and commemorates the adoption of the Nineteenth Amendment on August 26, 1920. Each year the President of the United States proclaims observance of the day. Last year, President Donald J. Trump proclaimed the day and honored “America’s female pioneers . . . [who] inspired countless others to challenge the status quo in order to advance the ultimate American value: that all men and women are created equal.”
Senator Glen J. Sturtevant, Jr. (R-Midlothian), another legislator hosting a celebration said Virginia should become the 38th state to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment. Senator Sturtevant added further: “Virginia has traditionally played a critical role in shaping our nation’s democracy, and we should do so again with an issue as fundamental and important as equality of rights under the law.”
Free public screenings will be held in Richmond, Hampton Roads, Charlottesville, Roanoke, Prince William, Fairfax/Loudon, and Alexandria. Small, social gatherings in private venues around the state will also occur (to register your screening, please click here).
Details for each venue will be posted here when finalized. Please check back as we will be updating this page often!