Today, August 18, 2020, the United States celebrates 100 years since the ratification of the 19th Amendment, giving women the right to vote. This right of suffrage came nearly 50 years after the right was given to African American men in 1870 and 133 years after our country was formed with the drafting of the Constitution in 1787. Remarkably, in the history of our nation, women have spent more time without the right to vote than with the right.
While the right of suffrage is one to be celebrated, such celebration is with a heavy heart, as it begs the question: Why was such a right ever denied in the first place? Explaining such a notion is difficult. While none of us can change the past, we can change the present by working to stop the inequalities, such as voter suppression and pay disparities, that still exist today.
As a first step, educating the masses is vital. Understanding how inequalities are maintained in our present society is the only way to eradicate them. No matter your political views, we should help all citizens make sure they are registered to vote, know how to vote, and can safely get to their polling place or vote by mail. Remind your friends, family and neighbors that registration must be done early and correctly by sharing Nebraska’s online voter registration website: https://www.nebraska.gov/apps-sos-voter-registration/. Yard signs and car displays can also help spread the word beyond your immediate community. An enormous amount of education can be accomplished with simple efforts by all.
Unfortunately, the call to action for changing pay disparities may be a bit more complex, and again, education is a first step. Check Fraser Stryker’s Firm News page on Women’s Equality Day, August 26, to read more on the history of pay disparities women have experienced and what best practices employers can implement to assist in eliminating these pay disparities moving forward.
Author: Kathryn A. Dittrick
This article has been prepared for general information purposes and (1) does not create or constitute an attorney-client relationship, (2) is not intended as a solicitation, (3) is not intended to convey or constitute legal advice, and (4) is not a substitute for obtaining legal advice from a qualified attorney. Always seek professional counsel prior to taking action.
Kathryn A. Dittrick