Monday, March 31, 2008
Senator Gwen Margolis Spearheads Drive For Equal Rights
Legislation Ratifying Equal Rights Amendment Will Be Heard In Committee Tomorrow
TALLAHASSEE In 1776, Abigail Adams in a letter to her husband, John, wrote: "In the new code of laws, remember the ladies and do not put such unlimited power into the hands of the husbands." Yet more than two hundred years after the colonists declared their independence from King George, women in the United States are still attempting to encode in the Constitution their own guarantee of sovereignty.
"It is vital that Florida join the majority of states and send a message to the rest of the world that female citizens should be constitutionally guaranteed equality," said State Senator Gwen Margolis ( D-Sunny Isles Beach ), who is once again at the forefront of legislative attempts to have Florida ratify the Equal Rights Amendment. "How do we explain to the rest of the world that should a woman win the U.S. Presidency the top job in this country - we could arguably get away with paying her only 77 cents on the dollar compared to her male predecessor?"
The Equal Rights Amendment, which affirms that both women and men hold equally all of the rights guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution, has remained unchanged since 1943: "Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex."
The amendment, for first time, would guarantee that sex discrimination be subject to the same judicial standards as race discrimination. The ERA has been ratified by thirty-five states thus far; endorsement by thirty-eight states is needed in order to amend the Constitution.
SJR 362- Equal Rights for Men & Women would add Florida to the list of states backing the constitutional amendment. The legislation will be heard in the Senate Judiciary Committee tomorrow, April 1st, 2008; at 1:00pm in room 110, Senate Office Building .
Senator Margolis, who previously served as the first female Senate President and as Miami-Dade County Commission Chairwoman, has worked tirelessly for the ERA's passage since her return to the upper chamber in 2002.
Contact: Zack Kobrin 850-487-5121
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