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August 26th is Women’s Equality Day


Photo of suffragists march, October 1917. The women are holding placards with signatures of more than one million women demanding the right to vote.  

Suffragists march in October 1917, displaying placards containing the signatures of more than one million New York women demanding to vote.

 

Women's Equality Day is a day proclaimed each year by the President of the United States to commemorate women obtaining the right to vote. Women in the United States gained the right to vote on August 26, 1920, when the 19th Amendment to the United States Constitution was certified.

Passage of this amendment was the culmination of a massive, peaceful civil rights movement that formally began in 1848 at the world’s first women’s rights convention, in Seneca Falls, New York. Every president has published a proclamation for Women's Equality Day since 1971 when legislation was first introduced in Congress. The resolution was passed designating August 26 of each year as Women's Equality Day.


Full Resolution:

“Joint Resolution of Congress, 1971 Designating August 26 of each year as Women's Equality Day

WHEREAS, the women of the United States have been treated as second-class citizens and have not been entitled the full rights and privileges, public or private, legal or institutional, which are available to male citizens of the United States; and

WHEREAS, the women of the United States have united to assure that these rights and privileges are available to all citizens equally regardless of sex;

WHEREAS, the women of the United States have designated August 26, the anniversary date of the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment, as symbol of the continued fight for equal rights: and

WHEREAS, the women of United States are to be commended and supported in their organizations and activities,

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, that August 26 of each year is designated as "Women's Equality Day," and the President is authorized and requested to issue a proclamation annually in commemoration of that day in 1920, on which the women of America were first given the right to vote, and that day in 1970, on which a nationwide demonstration for women's rights took place.”