United States

Celebrating Women's Equality Day

DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION  | 

The right to vote, the cornerstone of democracy, belongs to all citizens — but this wasn’t always the case. Until recently, many countries denied voting rights to half of their population: women.

To claim their voice, women began advocating for the right to vote in the early 19th century. Until then, in the U.S., decisions about who could vote were left up to the states. The 19th Amendment, ratified in 1920, ensures voting rights for everyone, regardless of gender.

Today, Women’s Equality Day celebrates the achievements of women’s rights activists and reminds us of the unique struggles that women face.

Here’s a little history lesson:

Women’s Equality Day, celebrated every August 26, commemorates the passage of women’s suffrage in the U.S., and reminds us of the hurdles overcome by the courageous women who faced discrimination and sometimes even violence to advance the women’s movement.

In the early 19th century, American women, who generally couldn’t inherit property under existing laws, and who made roughly half of a man’s wages in any available jobs (if they were able to get jobs), began organizing to demand political rights.  

By the early 1900s, several countries including Finland, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom had legalized voting for women as the movement continued to sweep across the world. In the U.S., the 19th Amendment to the Constitution was first introduced in 1878, but it didn’t initially succeed. The impetus for change: women’s involvement in the World War I effort, which shone a spotlight on their contributions, which were critical to the war’s outcome. 

But still, women are continuing their fight for equal rights. Today, the wage gap between men and women still impacts women’s economic power, and gender-based discrimination still plagues some workplaces and business transactions. 

To remind us of the struggles of the past, present, and future, Congress designated August 26 as Women’s Equality Day in 1971. It’s an annual reminder of the need to continue to strive for equality.

On behalf of our STAR employee network group and the rest of our 11,000+ people nationwide and in Canada, I’d like to invite you to join us in recognizing the importance of women in the workplace and the critical role they play in the world’s economic success. Please join us in recognizing Women’s Equality Day.

Dara Castle
Washington D.C. Metro Market Leader, Government Contracting National Industry Leader and National STAR Employee Network Group Leader


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DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION

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STAR advocates for women in the workplace with a focus on stewardship, teamwork, advancement and retention opportunities.