Why we still need the Equal Rights Amendment even after 96 years

The percentage of women in different ranking jobs from the lowest to the highest shows the lack of women in high-ranking positions.


The percentage of women in different ranking jobs from the lowest to the highest shows the lack of women in high-ranking positions.

Nicole Ordubegian, Staff Writer

After 96 years, the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) has a chance of being passed after almost a century of waiting. 

The Equal Rights Amendment has quite the complicated history. It was first proposed in 1923 by the National Women’s political party. Nearly 50 years later, in 1973, when the U.S. Senate passed the amendment, it was sent for ratification by the states before a 1982 deadline. It failed to get ratified from the four additional states needed.

Now, the time has finally arrived for women and men to get the actual equality they deserve. Although some are questioning if this amendment is still relevant, it has benefits to both sexes. 

These benefits can help people of all genders because the amendment is seeking to end the legal discrimination between men and women for divorce, property and employment. Many people are in need of this because they have been refused these rights. 

It’s no surprise that women have been discriminated against in the workplace. Because of this, there has been a lack of women going into high leadership positions in the workplace. According to an article from experteer, “the lack of women in leadership positions means that female talent is being underused and human capital wasted.”  

Barriers blocking women from accomplishing this include stereotypes, issues with how women would run things, demands from their family life, and a lack of mentors/sponsors willing to help. There is so much potential that could occur in these companies if they simply address the issue right in front of them. 

With the passing of the ERA, it is ensured that there will be legal protection for anyone ― regardless of gender ― and that no one will be discriminated against at work.

The amendment has many different clauses that address many issues, such as discrimination against sex, that apply to many people in the U.S. 

For example, the main clause of the ERA states, “Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.” This is important because it would provide a legal solution that would be against sex discrimination for men and women.

Although states can have the legal protection based on gender, only the federal government can provide U.S. citizens with the highest and broadest level of legal protection. Some of these states have certain restrictions; for example, California put an emphasis on equal employment and education rights. Currently, 25 states provide inclusive guarantees on the basis of sex.

Despite the fact that states do have a protocol for their Equal Rights Amendment, only with federal approval will there be the “highest and broadest level of legal protection against sex.” Some states do guarantee equal rights on the basis of sex in various ways. For example, when Utah and Wyoming entered the Union, they had constitutions that confirm equal rights for men and women. 

If this amendment is ratified, as said in the original 1943 version, it will be in full effect two years after the ratification date. The Equal Rights Amendment will officially be giving people of all genders the rights that they deserve as citizens of the United States of America.