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  • Kelly Watt

Watt’s Words: Dems Abroad & the ERA

A politically-inclined writer friend living in Hamilton, Ontario, Denise Roig, is currently editing the newsletter for Democrats Abroad. Originally from Los Angeles, she is a member with the Hamilton-Burlington-Niagara chapter, and has hosted postcard writing parties and other events supporting the ERA equal rights amendment in the U.S.

“Did you know,” she asked me over the phone, “that the ERA has never been passed in all states across the U.S.?” No, I did not. The Equal Rights Amendment was first introduced to the U.S. Congress in 1923, (yes that long ago), and guarantees equal legal rights for all American citizens regardless of sex. The state of Virginia could bring in the deciding vote this fall. All seats in the Virginia House and Senate are up for re-election this November, so the ERA stands a good chance of being passed. Finally. A ground-breaking moment for women. So Dems Abroad is working hard with VAratifyERA to elect Pro-ERA candidates.

If you are an American living in Canada, don't forget to register to vote in the coming, critical 2020 election. “It's easy,” Roig says. “Just go to and begin the process. Because we can't afford to sit this one out."

BTW, in the true north, equal rights are covered under Section 15 in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, which came into force April 17, 1982. Although Section 15 did not come into effect until three years later on April 17, 1985. Here it is below:

Equality rights – section 15

Equality before and under law and equal protection and benefit of law

15. (1) Every individual is equal before and under the law and has the right to the equal protection and equal benefit of the law without discrimination and, in particular, without discrimination based on race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, sex, age or mental or physical disability.

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