Congress first sent the amendment to the states for ratification in 1972. By 1975, 35 of the 38 states needed to ratify a constitutional amendment had passed it through their own legislatures, but Illinois had not.

Currently, Illinois has an Equal Rights Amendment in its state constitution that provides equal protection under the law to both men and women, which cannot be denied by the state, local government or school districts. However, this effort would support the federal constitutional amendment.

“It’s time for Illinois to lead again,” Bennett said. “Given the climate of our country today, we have a very important opportunity to show the rest of the nation that we live in a state where we value and protect equal rights.”

SJRCA 4 passed the Senate with bipartisan support and now moves to the House for consideration.

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