MADISON – Saturday marks the 97th anniversary of the adoption of the 19th Amendment granting women the right to vote. 97 years later, Wisconsin women are losing ground in the fight for full equality.
Women in Wisconsin are paid just 78 cents on the dollar compared to men, and the gap is even larger for women of color. During his first term in office, Governor Scott Walker led a Republican repeal of Wisconsin’s Equal Pay Act, making Wisconsin one of just five states without a law providing women who experience pay discrimination state-level recourse.
Since Scott Walker and the Republicans gained control of the Governor’s office and the Legislature in 2010, Wisconsin women have lost ground on key issues critical to gaining full equality. Republican attacks on women’s rights have included repealing Wisconsin’s equal pay law, defunding Planned Parenthood, and a slew of laws limiting access to reproductive health care.
“This weekend, we celebrate the gains we made 97 years ago when women gained the right to vote, but this is also a day to reflect on how far we have not yet come and on how much ground we have lost in Wisconsin,” said Representative Subeck. “Governor Walker and Republicans have turned back the clock on women’s rights in Wisconsin, and we must demand their attacks end immediately.”
The fight for equality is not limited to the workplace. Last year, we saw the first woman nominee of a major political party for the office of President and while more women than ever before are expressing an interest in running for public office, the fact remains women are grossly underrepresented in elected bodies at the local, state, and federal levels. Wisconsin has yet to elect a woman Governor, and though just over half of all Wisconsinites are female, women hold less than a quarter of the seats in the State Assembly.
“This weekend, I renew my commitment to fighting for women’s rights and ensuring every woman have a voice in the halls of government, in our educational institutions, in the workplace, and in the boardroom,” said Rep. Subeck. “I look forward to the day when women are truly equal and no woman is paid less than her male counterparts, faces interference making personal health care choices, or is told she does not belong at the tables where decisions are made.”