Women and men across the national and around the world are realizing that without a Constitutional amendment, women not only do not have equal rights, but also have no Constitutional protection against laws that discriminate against them solely because of gender. Ninety years after the initial introduction of the ERA in 1923, three more states and removal of the deadline are all that is needed to make full ratification a reality.
Supporters of the ERA 2013 Action Campaign include a growing number of organizations: the National Council of Women's Organizations and its ERA Task Force; National Organization for Women (NOW); UnitedWomen.org; Alice Paul Institute; Leage of Women Voters of New Jersey, Equal Rights Alliance, Inc; United for Equality, We are Woman, Rock the Slut Vote and dozens of other associations.
This latest effort to ratify the ERA is a direct response to the legislative War on Women by Federal and State lawmakers across the nation, who continue to introduce and pass laws that not only do not serve women, but actively obstruct access to women's basic healthcare services and legal protections. Recent examples include laws threatening access to birth control, placing almost insurmountable obstacles to the Constitutioally-protected right to obtain a safe, legal abortio and failing to renew the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), which protected women against domestic violence.
The War on Women is continuing in 2013 -- Federal legislation has already been introduced that would defund Planned Parenthood, a provider of basic healthcare services to women across the country and state legislation that would criminalize a rape victim seeking an abortion as "tampering with evidence" has been introduced in New Mexico. These are just two examples aong many at the Federal and state levels that are offensive to women.
Women cannot rely on their elected representatives to pass laws that do not discriminate against them, or that afford them the equality we would all like to believe we enjoy in the 21st century. That's why this effort to enshrine the principles of equal rights and protections for all - regardless of gender - in the Constitution is so essential.
The deadline to reach 25,000 signatures is February 9, 2013 at 11:59 PM EST. We urge everyone who agrees that women and girls deserve the same rights and protections that men and boys have under the Constitution to sign the Official ERA Action White House petition at http://wh.gov/P6gP and share the petition link with all your friends, family and social networks. Anyone 13 years of age or older from any country can sign so feel free to shar with your sons and daughters.
Tonight PDA Radio will host a special show at 7pm ET called The Women's Room - Getting Active for the ERA. Join Roberta Francis co-chair of ERA Task Force of the National Council of Women's Organization, Renee Davis, Executive Vice President of Programs for UniteWomen.org and Tammy Simkins, ERA Action 2013 petition originator to talk about the next steps in moving the ERA forward.