Wednesday, August 26, 2015 marked the 95th anniversary of Women’s Equality Day, commemorating the historic passage of the 19th amendment to the U.S. constitution, which gave women the right to vote.
In Sacramento, CA, a coalition of women’s and interfaith organizations have formed a new coalition called A Stronger California: Securing Economic Opportunity for all Women. AAUW CA is a part of this coalition and members came for a day of advocacy on behalf of California women.
While only directly lobbying on 3-4 bills, there is a full agenda of policy efforts by the coalition. “There are four pillars that frame policy initiatives critical to women: Fair pay and job opportunity, access to child care, family friendly workplaces and eradicating poverty.
I joined our state Public Policy Chair, Sue Miller, and National AAUW Vice Chair, Alicia Hetman, an Online branch member, along with AAUW branch members from Amador, Marin, and San Francisco as we walked the halls and spoke to legislators about targeted bills, i.e. SB 3 (Leno) to increase the minimum wage and tie it to a cost of living index, and SB 23 (Mitchell) that would repeal the CalWorks Maximum Family Grant. We actually spoke to Assembly members who were thoughtful, engaged, knowledgeable, and supportive of the coalition’s efforts.
At noon, all of the coalitions supporters in their navy “A Stronger California” T-shirts and buttons, rallied and listened to legislative heroines for women’s issues, like Hannah Beth Jackson and Debbie Matsui. Women stepped forward to share their personal, tearful stories of the economic and personal struggles they face to sustain their families.
While not a crowd of thousands, this small, but committed group of hundreds of diverse activists and organizations commemorated Women’s Equality Day with passion and ardor.
You will be hearing about more of AAUW CA’s work with this coalition as the legislative year progresses. But take a moment now to learn about A Stronger California.
Krys Wulff, President, Online Branch