Gov. Whitmer proclaims August 26 as Women’s Equality Day

On Saturday, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer proclaimed August 26 as Women’s Equality Day. This proclamation commemorates the 103rd anniversary of the 19th Amendment, which grants women the right to vote.

“On Women’s Equality Day, we honor the generations of women who fought hard so their daughters and granddaughters could have more rights than they were afforded,” said Governor Whitmer. “As governor, I know that I stand on the shoulders of so many women who opened doors and shattered glass ceilings for me, and I take the responsibility to do the same for my daughters and future generations seriously. I will continue empowering women in Michigan by expanding access to education, protecting reproductive freedom, and creating economic opportunity so anyone can ‘make it’ in Michigan. This Women’s Equality Day, I urge everyone to honor those who came before, celebrate how far we’ve come, and recommit ourselves to pursuing equality so everyone can pursue their full potential.”

Senate Majority Leader Winnie Brinks (D-Grand Rapids), the first woman to lead teh Michigan Senate, agrees with the proclamation.

“More and more women continue to be firsts in their field or position, and I am so proud to see them lead with authority and authenticity across industries,” said Brinks. “As one of those firsts – the first woman to serve as senate majority leader in Michigan’s history – I understand the additional, often unspoken efforts that go into earning a seat at the table. That’s why it’s so important to recognize Women’s Equality Day, both in celebration of how far we’ve come, and to shine a light where disparities still linger.”

On Women’s Equality Day in 2020, Governor Whitmer moved the Michigan’s Women’s Commission from the Department of Civil Rights to the Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity (LEO) to enhance the capacity of both entities to address the economic issues Michigan women face every day.

“Women’s Equality Day is a powerful reminder of the hard-fought battles that have brought us closer to gender parity and we encourage everyone to join us on the journey toward greater equality – ensuring every woman’s voice is heard, her aspirations are supported and her dreams are achievable free from bias or discrimination,” said Cheryl Bergman, CEO of the Michigan Women’s Commission. “The Michigan Women’s Commission serves as a driving force for positive change for women every day by advocating for policy changes, raising awareness about issues that affect women’s ability to thrive in our economy and celebrating their achievements.”

Michigan was one of the first three states to pass the 19th Amendment and was once home to notable suffragettes including Sojourner Truth, Anna Howard Shaw, Clara Arthur, and Lucia Voorhees Grimes. Women’s Equality Day celebrates the monumental efforts of those who have fought and continue to fight to protect women’s constitutional right to vote.

The full proclamation from Governor Whitmer can be found here.