On August 26, our nation celebrates Women’s Equality Day. This day recognizes the ratification of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, giving women the right to vote.
Many fearless and dedicated women suffered jail time, physical assaults by the police and spectators (at demonstrations), as well as insults, during the struggle for voting rights. This struggle spanned more than seven decades. However, it was not until 1973 that Congress by resolution designated this day as “Women’s Equality Day”.
The League of Women Voters was founded in 1920 by Carrie Chapman Catt, President of the National American Woman Suffrage Association, during its convention which was held six months before the ratification. She was a women’s rights activist and a suffragist, who stated correctly that the vote was the “emblem of equality” for all citizens, women and men.
The League of Women Voters of Virginia (LWV-VA) celebrates the fact that in 2018 there are 38 female legislators in the General Assembly as compared to 24 in 2015, an increase of 14. Although the LWV-VA does not endorse any candidates, we recognize this historical achievement.