The U.S. Equality Act is currently before the U.S. Senate, and might come up for a final vote at any time. WHRC USA has been in contact with the office of the U.S. Senate Majority Leader, Charles Schumer, the highest ranking official in the U.S. Congress. WHRC has an opportunity to weigh in on the global impacts of this bill. WHRC USA has drafted the message below to Senator Schumer. We are looking for as many signatories as possible to sign it, but we have to act fast.
If you wish to sign [everyone welcome to sign, wherever you are], please do so by 5 p.m. EST on Sunday 7 March. WHRC USA is hoping to submit this to the Majority Leader's office on Monday 8 March (International Women's Day).
This is the Letter:
Dear Senator Schumer,
We represent women all around the world and we are writing to share our concerns with the U.S. Equality Act as it is currently drafted. The Declaration on Women's Sex-Based Rights has been signed by over 15,000 individuals all over the world, approximately 2000 of whom live in the U.S. Its intent is to protect women and girls globally by ensuring that sex is maintained as a discrete category in numerous areas in the law. We encourage you to read its provisions.
Our understanding is that the current version of the U.S. Equality Act, which passed in the House of Representatives earlier this year, would redefine the word sex to include "gender identity" throughout U.S. Civil Rights Law. "Gender identity," which the Equality Act defines in a circular fashion with reference to "gender-related identity, appearance, mannerisms, or other gender-related characteristics," is, in practice, the mechanism by which individuals may claim the identity of the opposite sex. It has no basis in material reality.
Although the enactment of the Equality Act would only affect U.S. women directly, we are terrified of the impact that such enactment is likely to have globally. Our governments look to your government for leadership, expertise, and guidance. Already, we are seeing the word sex being redefined to include "gender identity" in laws throughout the U.K., the European Union, Australia, Canada, and New Zealand. These laws have had devastating impacts on the lives of women and girls, including the rapes of vulnerable women in prison, the inclusion of men in women's spaces such as locker rooms and changing rooms, and the inclusion of men in women's sports. This situation will only get worse if this law passes in the U.S., and similar laws are likely to extend to other geographic areas as well.
We understand that the U.S. chapter of the Women's Human Rights Campaign (WHRC) has shared with you information about the alternative they have proposed, the Equality for All Act. This bill is in alignment with the Declaration on Women's Sex-Based Rights, and we strongly urge you to consider introducing it in the U.S. Senate.
Thank you so much for your time and consideration. Women and girls all over the world are depending on your leadership.