A local chapter of the National Organization for Women is holding a demonstration Saturday to rally state legislators to join an effort to give women equal rights nationally.
The group is pushing members of the Pinellas County Legislative Delegation to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment, an addition to the U.S. Constitution first proposed in the 1920s and later ratified by Congress in 1972 that fell short of the 38 states needed to ratify it. The demonstration starts at 10:30 a.m. at the Pinellas County Courthouse at 315 Court St. in Clearwater.
Florida is one of several states that hasn’t ratified the amendment, which declares that “equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex,” according to a history of the amendment on equalrightsamendment.org.
In March, Nevada became the most recent state to ratify the amendment, the first since Indiana in 1977, according to NPR. Two more states are needed to hit the 38-state mark.
“It’s of great importance for women,” said BJ Star, the president of the West Pinellas chapter of the National Organization for Women. “We can’t survive not being a part of our constitution.”