WEST HOLLYWOOD—The West Hollywood City Council unanimously approved a Resolution that supports the Equal Means Equal initiative during its meeting on August 21. The initiative will focus on educating the public about the legal status of women in the United States and will fight for the ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) in states where it has not yet been passed.

Originally written by Alice Paul in 1923, the ERA affirms that women and men have equal rights. It simply states, “Equality of Rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.” The ERA was passed by Congress in 1972 and sent to the states for ratification. It has been ratified by 36 states, two short of the 38-state minimum required to add it to the United States Constitution. The most recent state to ratify the ERA was Nevada, on March 22, 2017. It is the first state to ratify the amendment since the 1970s.

“Women and girls in the United States still do not have the equal rights they deserve,” said City of West Hollywood Mayor John Heilman. “The Equal Rights Amendment must be ratified. It’s up to us to educate people everywhere about its importance, especially in states where it has not yet passed.”

“Equal means equal. The City of West Hollywood has a strong record of standing by this basic idea of fairness. Our city has continually supported initiatives that call for full equality for women,” said Councilmember Lindsey P. Horvath. “With this Resolution we broadcast, loud and clear, that the Equal Rights Amendment must be ratified in states where it has not yet passed in order for it to become the law of the land.”

The Equal Means Equal Initiative is an effort led by Kamala Lopez, the director of the “Equal Means Equal” documentary film. West Hollywood hosted a screening of the film as part of its Women’s Equality Day commemoration on August 18. Lopez is the founder of the Heroica Foundation, a nonprofit focused on empowering women and informing the world about women’s rights.

West Hollywood has a strong record of supporting initiatives that call for equal pay for equal work. The City’s Women’s Advisory Board is involved in a myriad of programming and events that recognize and support women in the community.

For additional information, contact the city of West Hollywood at (323) 848-6460. For people who are deaf or hearing impaired, call TTY (323) 848-6496.