Though 91 percent of Republicans, 92 percent of independents, and 98 percent of Democrats favor the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA), the Arizona legislature is once again holding it up.
Three bills have been introduced; SCR1006, SCR1009, and HCR 2030. None have yet been heard.
Rural areas should be particularly concerned about the economic ramifications of these actions. The Economist estimated in 2018 that advancing women’s equality could add $12 trillion to the global gross domestic product by 2025. Here in the U.S., it’s between a $2.1 trillion and $4.3 trillion addition to the country’s GDP in the next decade.
If every state and city made progress toward gender parity, they could add at least 5 percent to their own economies. Half of U.S. states can add more than 10 percent. No wonder former U.S. Treasurer Rosie Rios said, “It is not a gender issue, it’s about the economy.”
As the National Partnership for Women and Families reported, there is a $7,029 wage gap in Arizona. Women in our state who are employed full-time lose nearly $6 billion dollars every year due to the wage gap. The gap in Arizona ranges from 81 cents per dollar for Asian women to 46 cents per dollar for Native American women. It’s not only unfair, it’s bad for the economy, bad for business, and bad for families.
Contact your state senator or representative and tell them to ratify the ERA.