Delaware Public Media

State Senate passes Delaware ERA amendment

Jun 6, 2018

Delaware took a historic step toward adding an Equal Rights Amendment to its constitution. The amendment finally cleared the state Senate.


Delaware women stood and cheered after senators passed the state ERA. It would add language to the state Constitution outlawing discrimination based on sex.

The measure gained Senate approval after both parties agreed to add clarification of the amendment’s intent. It addresses some of the Republicans’ concerns around abortion, private sector wages and services that are only offered to one sex.

House Majority Leader Valerie Longhurst said including the General Assembly’s intent helps people better appreciate the ERA’s purpose.

“The issue was that a lot of people didn’t understand it," she said. "But with the intent and having that in there, makes all the difference in the world. I’m just thrilled and thanks Sen. Hansen for all her hard work and my posse behind me.”

Longhurst said the House will vote quickly on the amendment with the Senate’s change. If it passes - that will complete the first leg of approving the state ERA. It needs to pass both chambers again next year in a new legislative session to change the state’s constitution.