When the Prince William County Board of Supervisors meets on November 20, 2018 they will have the chance to be a part of history. Virginia could become the 38th state, and final one needed, to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA). When this happens, the amendment will become part of the US Constitution and will guarantee equal rights for both men and women.
The resolution, put forth by Woodbridge District Supervisor Frank Principi, requires no funding or official action from the County other than urging the General Assembly to ratify the amendment in 2019. By passing this resolution, Prince William will demonstrate that we are a county that practices and believes in the principles of fair treatment, and will include the Equal Rights Amendment in the Prince William legislative agenda for the General Assembly.
The Equal Rights Amendment has broad nonpartisan support. Polls conducted in 2015 show that 94% of Americans believe equal rights for men and women should be guaranteed by the US. Constitution. To date, 37 states have already ratified the ERA; including Nevada in 2017 and Illinois in 2018. The Virginia Senate passed a bill ratifying the ERA five times between 2011 and 2016, but the House of Delegates never released it from committee for a vote. Now, with a bipartisan majority of Virginia State Delegates and Senators as patrons, including almost all of the Prince William delegation, Virginia is ready to take action, and Prince William has the opportunity to be a part of this historical effort.
Members of the public are encouraged to attend the meeting on November 20. As with all BOCS meetings, residents may also sign up to address the Board during Citizen’s Time or contact the Board at BOCS@pwcgov.org.