Senate DFL women Senators demand equal rights under the law

The women of the Senate DFL gathered today virtually to rally for Minnesota to finally pass the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA). The federal Equal Rights Amendment was originally written in 1923 and finally passed by Congress in 1972. Minnesota ratified the ERA one year later in 1973. After nearly 100 years, the ERA bill was passed in the Minnesota House in 2019, but did not make it past the Republican-controlled Senate.

In response, the fourteen DFL women Senators make the following statement:

“For generations, we have witnessed women across the United States stand up to demand equal rights in the eyes of the law, which would be guaranteed by the Equal Rights Amendment. The Minnesota Constitution should guarantee equal rights for all Minnesotans, which is why we, the women of the Senate DFL, are proud to stand together in calling for renewed efforts to add the Equal Rights Amendment to the Minnesota Constitution. We cannot wait any longer for our legal system to recognize all Minnesotans as equal under the law.

“Women in the 21st century shouldn’t have to continually rally for equal rights and to be treated fairly by employers, courts, and state and local governments. The Senate DFL is committed to working together to build the state that all Minnesotans deserve. That includes fighting for equitable policies, opportunities, and protections for all Minnesotans – at home, work, school, and in our communities.

“Minnesotans believe in equality in the workplace, equality in wages, and equality under the law. Unfortunately, women of color continue to experience occupational and economic disadvantages that reflect the ways both racism and sexism affect their work experiences. It is important that we recognize that women of color have been left out of the discussion in the past, and that we must work in an intersectional fashion to ensure that all women are included in our push for equal rights. The ERA will amend the Constitution for women of every race, ethnicity, and socioeconomic background. It’s about time we ratified the Minnesota Constitution to include everyone, not just a select few.”

Women of the Senate DFL include Senate DFL Leader Susan Kent (SD 53), Senator Karla Bigham (SD 54), Senator Kari Dziedzic (SD 60), Senator Chris Eaton (SD 40), Assistant DFL Leader Senator Melisa Franzen (SD 49), Senator Ann Johnson Stewart (SD 44), Senator Mary Kunesh (SD 41), Senator Jennifer McEwen (SD 07), Senator Erin Murphy (SD 64), Senator Sandra Pappas (SD 65), Senator Lindsey Port (SD 56), Senator Ann Rest (SD 45), Senator Patricia Torres Ray (SD 63), and Senator Melissa Wiklund (SD 50).

Senator Susan Kent
Susan Kent represents District 53 in the eastern Twin Cities metropolitan area.

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Senator Karla Bigham
Karla Bigham represents District 54 in the southeast Twin Cities metro, including parts of Dakota and Washington counties.

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Senator Kari Dziedzic
Kari Dziedzic represents District 60, which includes Seward, Cedar Riverside, Southeast and Northeast Minneapolis.

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Senator Chris Eaton
Chris Eaton represents District 40, which includes the cities of Brooklyn Center and Brooklyn Park in Hennepin County in the Twin Cities metropolitan area.

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Senator Franzen
Melisa Franzen represents District 49 in the southwest Twin Cities metropolitan area.

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Ann Johnson Stewart represents Senate District 44, which covers the communities of Plymouth, Minnetonka, and Woodland.

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Mary K. Kunesh represents Senate District 41, which covers the communities of St. Anthony Village, New Brighton, Hilltop, Columbia Heights, Fridley, and a portion of Spring Lake Park.

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Jen McEwen represents Senate District 7, which covers the community of Duluth.

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Erin Murphy represents Senate District 64, which includes portions of the Saint Paul community.

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Senator Sandy Pappas
Sandy Pappas represents District 65, which includes portions of Saint Paul in Ramsey County in the Twin Cities metropolitan area.

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Lindsey Port represents Senate District 56, which covers the communities of Burnsville, Savage, and the northwest part of Lakeville.

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Senator Ann Rest
Ann Rest represents District 45, which includes portions of the western suburbs of Hennepin County in the Twin Cities metro area.

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Senator Patricia Torres Ray
Patricia Torres Ray represents District 63, which includes portions of southeastern Minneapolis and eastern Richfield in Hennepin County in the Twin Cities metropolitan area.

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Senator Melissa Wiklund
Melissa Wiklund represents District 50, which includes portions of Bloomington and Richfield in the southern Twin Cities metropolitan area.

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