Nancy Pelosi, House Democratic Leader released the following statement today in honor of the anniversary of Women’s Equality Day:
“Today, 85 years after women finally obtained the right to vote, we celebrate the successes of the women’s suffrage movement and the continuing fight for equality, the opening of doors, and the smashing of glass ceilings.
“But we must stand sentry over our civil rights, never forgetting the hard-won fight to obtain them, and continuing to work for the rights and equality of our sisters around the world.
“There is still work to be done. Women today earn only 77 cents for every dollar men earn, yet President Bush has eliminated the Equal Pay Initiative, designed to protect against discriminatory practices that threaten equal pay for women and minorities. We must continue to work to close the pay gap, and to provide more effective remedies for women who are not being paid equal wages for doing equal work.
“While Social Security has represented dignity and independence to millions of women over the years, the President still champions his risky privatization plan. Women would be disproportionately harmed by this misleading proposal; Democrats are united against turning Social Security’s guaranteed benefit into a guaranteed gamble.
“Even as we recognize the passage of essential liberties for women, President Bush and anti-choice Republican lawmakers in Congress are threatening the right to reproductive freedom. We must fight to protect these rights.
“And Title IX, one of the most instrumental initiatives in achieving equality for women in the classroom and on the playing field, is under threat as the Bush Administration has recently lowered the standard for schools to comply with Title IX. Democrats are working to try to get the Bush Administration to reverse its recent action and make certain that Title IX is protected, not eroded.
“Former Congresswoman Bella Abzug established Women’s Equality Day in 1971 so that we would always remember our past while looking toward the next possibilities for progress. On this anniversary, let us honor her legacy and recommit ourselves to continue to open the doors and fuel the hopes for women of the next generation and beyond.”