/PRNewswire/ -- Speaker Nancy Pelosi issued the following statement today on Women's Equality Day:
"Women's Equality Day offers us the opportunity to honor the brave American suffragettes who reached for the ballot, demanded their civil rights, and altered the course of history. These pioneers challenged the status quo so women today can pull the lever for progress, and they forced open the doors of equality and justice so all could walk through them.
"This year, America's women have made great strides on the path to true equality. The Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act - now the law of the land - will ensure that women and all workers subject to pay discrimination have the right to seek justice in our courts. The confirmation of Sonia Sotomayor as our first Latina Supreme Court justice adds the voice of a passionate, principled jurist to our nation's highest court.
"Women hold positions of leadership in the President's cabinet and on Congressional committees. In our last election, women voted in record numbers, paving the road to change and leading the way to a brighter future. And today, the voices of mothers and grandmothers everywhere are driving our push for quality, affordable, accessible health care for all Americans.
"Though there is much to celebrate in the fight for women's rights, our struggle is far from over. Women still earn 78 cents for every dollar men make, violating the fundamental value of equal pay for equal work. Women hold just 17 percent of the seats in the U.S. Senate and under 17 percent in the House of Representatives - a sign that our goal of equality in representation requires our continued focus and energy. Around the world, women are denied the right to vote, mothers are not allowed to work, and young girls are shut out of the classroom.
"Gaining the right to vote was only the first step in the battle for equality. We must continue to speak out and act on behalf of women across the country and around the world, working until the dream of true equality and civil rights becomes a reality for all women."
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