By Estefani Alarcon
When women gather and work together, magic happens. On Saturday, February 25th, “Never Turn Away a Woman” presented EQUAL MEANS EQUAL, a film by Kamala Lopez that educates Americans on the importance of equal rights under federal law for women.
The film touches on the different issues women face such as domestic violence, sexual assault, homelessness, wage discrimination, poverty and the list goes on. These issues are not protected by the constitution for women. In the film, she connects all of these issues with one another and explains how this affects the future of women in the United States and across the globe. Lopez shared the stories of different women who have been victims of different crimes but their abusers are still free. Some of the cases presented on trial were dismissed and were evidence that women are not protected by the constitution.
“When you have all of your rights given to you by laws they can be overturned by whoever happens to be in control of the white house and as we have seen these things change very wildly from administration to administration,” said Kamala.
Lopez believes that the Equal Right Amendment (ERA) will be the only thing that will guarantee women with rights from one generation to the next. The ERA has still not passed because it is still three states short. Although as of February 24th, 2017 the senate in Nevada passed the ERA. Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Utah, and Virginia are the states that are unratified. Three of those states can change the future for women.
As for actions, Lopez asked the audience to share and tell their friends, especially if they are from any of the states above to co-sponsor bill 53 in the Senate and 5 in the house that says that the deadline for the amendment needs to be removed because there has never been a deadline for an amendment before. Also, you can join the movement by hosting a party, buying the kit and screening the film to continue to educate people on the ERA and the injustices women face day to day.
There is also plenty of volunteer opportunities that allow people to help and contribute to the work that existing organizations are already doing. There are many organizations that help women who are living on skid row and are facing different issues like domestic violence and sexual assault but all that is needed is assistance and donations.
“We can no longer afford to put our fiat as human beings into the hands of a political party. Because humanity, dignity, and equality are rights we claim as our human birthright.”
For more information on how you can help visit: http://equalmeansequal.com