Specifically, the Equal Rights Amendment is the social compact America needs now. It mandates that Congress, the 50 states, the Executive and Judicial branches must recognize, prioritize and address the challenges that for too long have been dismissed as the private burden of women to carry without a reciprocal public commitment to societal well-being.
Establishing a new political paradigm for women as equal citizens will open doors of opportunity to close the wage gap, eliminate gender bias in law and policy and advocate for a national work/life agenda that accommodates the role of caregiving (to self and to others) within the world of paid work that will ultimately benefit our citizens, our economy and our world.
Business and families lack a federal commitment to work/life options such as:
Affordable health, child, after school and elder care
Paid sick, safe and family leave to care for self and others
Flexible work arrangements - telework, job share, flex time
Guaranteed equal pay for equal work
Social security benefits extended to stay-at-home parents
2. SMALL BUSINESS OWNERSHIP
Woman-owned businesses will provide 1/3 of all new jobs by 2018, yet account for less than 5% of all gov't contracts awarded and have faced caps on the monetary value of contracts.
3. MILITARY READINESS & RESPECT
Servicewomen have died protecting our constitution without the reciprocal dignity and respect of full and equal citizenship. Servicewomen are enduring a sexual violence epidemic that includes, harassment, assault, cohersion, retaliation and involuntary discharge compounded by their inferior status in job opportunity, support, benefits, promotion and dignity.
A provision of America's immigration reform should include nullifying Congress's deadline for the ERA that continues to block generations of women from reclaiming their inalienable rights to full participation and citizenship.
5. GLOBAL LEADERSHIP BY EXAMPLE
America cannot lead from behind. To end worldwide human rights abuses, the US government must take concrete, sustainable action that guarantees women and girls' equality of treatment and opportunity within our social contract.