Case for ERA


The Law

  • The courts currently treat gender discrimination more leniently (“intermediate scrutiny”) than discrimination on the basis of race, national origin, or alienage (“strict scrutiny”).
  • Adoption of the Equal Rights Amendment will give Congress greater Constitutional authority to enact legislation to protect women. Without this, legislation protecting women could be invalidated as happened in 2000, when the Supreme Court struck down the civil remedy provision of the Violence Against Women Act.

Economics

  • Virginia competes for college students, corporate headquarter relocations, top industry talent, etc. and an unmistakable indicator of Virginia’s support for gender equality will be attractive to citizens, business, and industry.
  • Virginia has already demonstrably benefited economically from North Carolina’s divisive politics. Ratifying the Equal Rights Amendment could further this advantage, particularly if nationwide press covers the story.

Politics

  • Ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment is good politics for Virginia, especially now when national attention is focused on women’s issues and technology companies are looking to locate in welcoming sites in the Southeast.
  • Virginia women are showing a surging interest in politics based on the last couple of election cycles. Women’s interest is a reflection of an increased focus on gender equality and parity of representation in society.
  • The resolutions to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment have strong, bipartisan support. In 2018 and in 2019 a majority of Senators and Delegates signed onto the legislation. A ratification will bring Virginia’s General Assembly national accolades not only for its leadership on a longstanding civil rights issue but also for its bipartisanship during these contentious times.
  • Given the historical nature of the “38th state to ratify” status Virginia could achieve, there is a lot of energy and focus in the state and around the country on Virginia’s activities related to the Equal Rights Amendment.