Photo of Delegate Hala Ayala at an ERA rally

RICHMOND, Va.-- Delegate Hala Ayala (D-51) of Woodbridge today issued the following statement in preparation for the rules change that affects the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) resolution from the Senate. The rules change calls for a vote to let the Equal Rights Amendment get to the floor for a vote.

Ahead of the rules change proposal, Del. Ayala spoke at a rally in front of the Virginia State House, “No more lip service, no more empty promises, no more 'I respect you by shaking your hand.' Respect will be shown when we gain equality in the Constitution...To my Republican colleagues, if you believe and stand with women, you will vote for women.”

This is an extraordinary measure for an extraordinary situation. The Equal Rights Amendment is a bipartisan issue, with overwhelming popular support, and it is far past time for our voices to be heard,” states Del. Ayala, “Now is not the moment to shy away from correcting the historical exclusion of women and girls from our Constitution. Now is the time to stand up, and speak out.”

The Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) is a provision that would guarantee women protection under the law. Congress initially passed the ERA in 1972 but the deadline for state ratification has since expired. Virginia is now the 38th and final state needed to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment.

You can view more of Del. Ayala’s speech here.