When Title IX was implemented on June 23, 1972, it rejuvenated the women's rights movement. This law states that education programs receiving federal funding cannot discriminate against an individual based upon their sex, effectively ensuring that women's equality in the American education system became a top priority for the federal government. Today, as we commemorate the 40th anniversary of this Amendment, we must first and foremost appreciate all that it has helped accomplish in leveling the playing field for women's access to educational opportunities. Secondly, however, we need to realize that the fight for equal opportunity is far from over.
The enactment of Title IX led to a number of success stories for women and the opportunities they were able to gain. By lowering the dropout rate and increasing the number of postsecondary and graduate level degrees, this law resulted in a dismissal of the stereotypes that so many had cast upon women. For the first time in American history, the number of women graduating from college was proportionate to that of men. Perhaps most notably, Title IX has had a significant impact in high school and collegiate athletics by increasing girls' and women's participation, increasing scholarships, and opening further doors to employment for these athletic women. This amendment changed our nation's perspective on the way women were viewed and encouraged society to grant them the equality they deserve.
Throughout my tenure in Congress, I have remained dedicated to advocating for gender equality in education, the workforce, safety, and healthcare, among other areas. Recently, I was proud to cosponsor the Paycheck Fairness Act, which ensures that women in the workforce receive equal pay and treatment. In addition, I cosponsored the Campus Sexual Violence Elimination (SaVE) Act to help protect students from various crimes on campus, including dating violence and stalking. Through these bills, I hope to ensure that progress is made in protecting women's equality as well as security. However, these pieces of legislation are merely building blocks that are at risk of tumbling should my Republican counterparts continue to dismiss these and other bills that I believe are vital in ensuring women's rights.
With the GOP's blocking of the Paycheck Fairness Act and their on-going campaign against a woman's right to choose, they have created a barrier in the road to gender equality for our nation. I believe in the effectiveness of job creation programs as well as in funding facilities that help women gain access to the services they need, and I plan on continuing my efforts to rally support for policies that promote women's rights. History has taught us that we have the tools necessary to bring about changes in the status quo. The enactment of Title IX was a significant milestone in this effort. As we celebrate the 40th anniversary of Title IX becoming law, we are reminded that we need to maintain a vested interest in pursuing policies that will positively impact the fight for equal opportunity for all in America, regardless of gender, age, race, national origin, religion, or disability.