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Statement from Catholics for Choice President Jamie L. Manson on the Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing on the Equal Rights Amendment

February 28, 2023

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Tuesday, February 28, 2023
Contact: John Becker, Press Secretary
Phone:  (202) 203-0931

Statement from Catholics for Choice President Jamie L. Manson on the Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing on the Equal Rights Amendment

WASHINGTON – Catholics for Choice, which uplifts and amplifies the voices of the majority of Catholics who believe in reproductive freedom, released the following statement from President Jamie L. Manson, M.Div., in advance of today’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the Equal Rights Amendment:

“The single most important step that the United States of America can take to safeguard the rights of women and LGBTQIA+ people is to enshrine the Equal Rights Amendment into our nation’s constitution. The ERA will guarantee equality of protection under the law for all citizens, regardless of sex, and would place these precious protections — including abortion rights, marriage equality, and the right to gender-affirming healthcare — permanently out of the reach of partisan politicians and capricious courts. It is supported by three-quarters of Americans, and it is long overdue.

“It is not an accident that the Catholic church has always opposed the ERA and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Secretariat for Pro-Life Activities is ramping up its disinformation campaign against this transformative amendment. They understand its potential and power to permanently enshrine equality for all in the Constitution — a reality that, tragically, is the biggest fear of right-wing forces within the hierarchy and laity.

“Eighty-five percent of countries in the world have a gender provision in their constitutions. The United States is an outlier among its peer democracies in not providing equal protection to the rights of all its citizens. Catholics for Choice gratefully commends Senate Judiciary Committee Chair Dick Durbin (D-IL), a pro-choice Catholic himself, for holding today’s hearing reminding Americans of the need for the Equal Rights Amendment. We also call on the Senate to pass the bill eliminating the arbitrary deadline for the ratification of the ERA, and we ask President Biden to instruct the archivist to finally publish it as the 28th Amendment to the United States Constitution. The fate of our rights depends on it.”

Catholics for Choice shapes and advances sexual and reproductive ethics that are based on justice, reflect a commitment to a person’s well-being and respect, and affirm the capacity of all people to make moral decisions about their lives.