Act. Connect. Engage. – Naperville, or A.C.E., is a progressive group formed in the wake of the national women’s marches last year.
On Sunday, A.C.E. hosted a panel discussing several of today’s women’s issues and how to take action against them.
They invited experts from different organizations to speak about the equal rights amendment, Planned Parenthood, and the role of men in the women’s rights movement.
The Equal Rights Amendment is only 24 words long and states that an individual’s rights cannot be denied based on their sex.
“Because we are really looking for the era to be ratified in Illinois this Spring, it is really important that I make this issue known to Illinoisans,” said Michelle Fadeley, President of the Illinois Chapter of the National Organization for Women. “Because so many people don’t know that this is still an issue. And that women still don’t have equal protections in the US Constitution.”
Paloma Arroyo then told the audience there are a lot of misconceptions about Planned Parenthood and how the organization is working to advance women’s rights in many areas.
“But we aren’t done yet. We have a ton of work to do,” said Arroyo. “We are not satisfied with the status quo here in the state of Illinois. We are fighting for the ERA. We are fighting for a $15 minimum wage, an amendment to the Equal Pay Act, and a bunch of other things to make sure that Illinois is a leader.”
Supporting women in these issues was another key aspect of the panel. Blake Kelley of Men4Choice went over how men can get involved in the women’s rights movement.
“We realize that we are an organization that is meant to be an ally to another group,” Kelley said. “So we don’t ever want to feel like we are trying to be leaders in the space. We are trying to be the support system and stand alongside women in this fight.”
A.C.E. is also preparing for their next big events, which involve the upcoming primary elections.
Naperville News 17’s Casey Krajewski reports.
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