Non-profit

Equal Rights Amendment Coalition

Website:

www.eracoalition.org/

Location:

New York, NY

Tax-Exempt Status:

501(c)(4)

Formation:

2015

Executive Director:

Carol Jenkins

Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) Coalition is a left-leaning advocacy organization that aims to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment, a proposed Constitutional amendment that would stipulate that “Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.” [1]

The Amendment was adopted by Congress and submitted to the states for ratification; a legislated deadline passed without sufficient state ratifications, [2] but left-progressive legal activists such as ERA Coalition argue that deadline is legally irrelevant and the Amendment can still be ratified. The organization works with states to ratify the amendment, as well as with legislators on the amendment and other Equal Rights Amendment bills. [3]

The Fund for Women’s Equality is the 501(c)(3) sister organization of ERA Coalition.

Amendment Status

In January 2020, Virginia became the latest state to purport to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment after Democrats took control of both houses of the Virginia General Assembly, and after Nevada and Illinois purported to ratify in 2017 and 2018. No other states had ratified since 1977; the statutory deadline adopted when Congress submitted the ERA for ratification was 1979, later extended by joint resolution to 1982. Further complicating matters, five states had “rescinded” their ratifications during the ratification period; it is not clear what if any legal effect such recissions have. [4]

According to the Constitution, amendments take effect when three-quarters of the states ratify them; at the time of the ERA’s adoption (and as of 2020) this is 38 of 50 states. Virginia’s purported ratification made it the 38th state, but there is more that must happen. Congress proposed the Equal Rights Amendment in 1972, at which time ratification deadlines were set and have since lapsed and five states have acted to rescind their support and prior approval. [5] Carol Jenkins, CEO of ERA Coalition, has suggested that the deadline set is not actually a deadline, but a time limit, and believes that Congress can remove it should they decide to do so. [6]

With a resurgence of women’s activism, such as the Women’s March on Washington and the #MeToo Movement, and a record number of women elected to Congress and state legislatures in 2018, the Equal Rights Amendment has become gained resurgence and a focus for some organizations like the Equal Rights Amendment Coalition. [7]

Actions

ERA Coalition aims to increase support for the Equal Rights Amendment in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives. ERA Coalition holds bi-weekly calls, attendees include U.S. Senators and Representatives and state legislators in states that have yet to be ratified, to discuss strategies and resources. In 2018, ERA Coalition organized a “shadow” hearing with U.S. Representative Carolyn Maloney (D-NY). On April 30, 2019, ERA Coalition worked with Judiciary Committee Chair Jerry Nadler (D-NY) to organize a congressional hearing on the Equal Rights Amendment. The organization also worked with Senators Ben Cardin (D-MD) and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK). [8]

The organization works to increase support across the country and its membership for the Equal Rights Amendment. [9] In 2018, it hosted a Women of Color Summit in New York City. [10]

ERA Coalition put together a Legal Task Force in preparation for the passing of the Equal Rights Amendment. The lawyers produced a legal brief, “The Equal Rights Amendment: Advocacy, Litigation, and the 38th State,” asserting that ratifications subsequent to the Congressional deadline would be meaningful. [11]

Due to its social media presence, website, weekly newsletters, interviews and opinion pieces, and events, ERA Coalition claims it is educating and reaching people to share information with them about the Equal Rights Amendment. Each spring ERA Coalition organizes a call to action, Campus ERA Day, hosted by Hunter College with other campuses participating across the country. [12]

Corporate America for the ERA – ERA Coalition Business Council

Companies such as Johnnie Walker, Michael Stars, and Level Forward have joined the new ERA Coalition Business Council, a council created by ERA Coalition to gather corporations and businesses to push for their support in ratifying the Equal Rights Amendment in collaboration with the ERA Coalition. [13]

Online Presence

ERA Coalition has an active presence through its website and social media accounts, with regular updates, comments, and posts. Its website contains a media section, publishing videos and town hall style conversational meetings, and links to the organization’s newsletters, blog page, press releases, and merchandise shop. [14]

The organization has a LinkedIn page that is shared with the Fund for Women’s Equality. The LinkedIn page only contains information about the organization and its location. There are not regular posts or other information shared. [15]

Facebook

The organization has an active Facebook account, with regular comments and posts. [16] The topics, comments, and posts are left-leaning in topic and viewpoint, with articles and information shared that focuses on LGBT issues, COVID-19, women of color, women’s equality issues, and the ERA Coalition’s townhall-style meetings. [17] ERA Coalition posts in support of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) because ERA Coalition works closely with her in an attempt to ratify an Equal Rights Amendment. [18]

Twitter

ERA Coalition posts and “retweets” to its Twitter page regularly. [19] The posts and retweets are left-leaning; topics include LGBT issues and mail-in voting, use expressions such as “privileged white Americans,”[20] and also promote the ERA Coalition’s town hall style conversational meetings. [21] ERA Coalition retweets from the ACLU and Feminist Majority Foundation. [22]

Activist actress Alyssa Milano[23] is both a supporter and contributor to the ERA Coalition and her posts are often shared on the ERA Coalition’s Twitter page. [24]

Leadership

Carol Jenkins, co-president and CEO of ERA Coalition and Fund for Women’s Equality, is a women’s rights activist, author, and former television journalist. She hosts an interview show, “Black America,” and is also executive producer, writer, and correspondent of documentaries that have appeared on PBS. She was the founding president of the Women’s Media Center, an advocacy and media leadership group. [25]  According to ERA Coalition’s tax returns, Carol Jenkins did not receive any compensation in 2018, but she received $66,250 in compensation from the Fund for Women’s Equality. [26]

Jessica Neuwirth, president of ERA Coalition, is also a founder of Equality Now, an international human rights group. She formerly worked for Amnesty International, the United Nations Office of Legal Affairs, and served as consultant to the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. [27]

Financials

ERA Coalition is a 501(c)(4) nonprofit and is not required by the IRS to publicly disclose its donors. In 2018, the latest IRS filings available online, ERA Coalition filed a 990EZ Short Form, which provides less information than a standard form. [28] ERA Coalition is listed as a “related” organization on the IRS tax filings for the Fund for Women’s Equality. [29]

References

  1. McDermott, Jackie. “Will the Equal Rights Amendment Be Adopted?,” February 6, 2020. https://constitutioncenter.org/interactive-constitution/blog/will-the-equal-rights-amendment-be-adopted. ^
  2. McDermott, Jackie. “Will the Equal Rights Amendment Be Adopted?,” February 6, 2020. https://constitutioncenter.org/interactive-constitution/blog/will-the-equal-rights-amendment-be-adopted. ^
  3. Home. Equal Rights Amendment Coalition. Accessed June 25, 2020. http://www.eracoalition.org/ ^
  4. McDermott, Jackie. “Will the Equal Rights Amendment Be Adopted?,” February 6, 2020. https://constitutioncenter.org/interactive-constitution/blog/will-the-equal-rights-amendment-be-adopted. ^
  5. Cohen, Alex and Codrington III, Wilfred. “The Equal Rights Amendment Explained.” Brennan Center for Justice. January 23, 2020. Accessed June 25, 2020. https://www.brennancenter.org/our-work/research-reports/equal-rights-amendment-explained ^
  6. Chang, Ailsa. “Virginia Posed to Pass Equal Rights Amendment Nearly 5 Decades After It Was Proposed.” NPR’s All Things Considered. December 30, 2019. Accessed June 25, 2020. https://www.npr.org/2019/12/30/792456898/virginia-poised-to-pass-equal-rights-amendment-nearly-5-decades-after-it-was-pro ^
  7. Cohen, Alex and Codrington III, Wilfred. “The Equal Rights Amendment Explained.” Brennan Center for Justice. January 23, 2020. Accessed June 25, 2020. https://www.brennancenter.org/our-work/research-reports/equal-rights-amendment-explained ^
  8. About the Coalition. ERA Coalition. Accessed June 22, 2020. http://www.eracoalition.org/about ^
  9. About the Coalition. ERA Coalition. Accessed June 22, 2020. http://www.eracoalition.org/about ^
  10. A New Era for the E.R.A.: Women of Color Lead the Way. The Promise and Perils of Democracy. Accessed June 22, 2020. https://democracy.gc.cuny.edu/event/a-new-era-for-the-e-r-a-women-of-color-lead-the-way/ ^
  11. About the Coalition. ERA Coalition. Accessed June 22, 2020. http://www.eracoalition.org/about ^
  12. About the Coalition. ERA Coalition. Accessed June 22, 2020. http://www.eracoalition.org/about ^
  13. Corporate American for the ERA. Equal Rights Amendment Coalition. Accessed June 18, 2020. http://www.eracoalition.org/corporate ^
  14. Media. ERA Coalition. Accessed June 23, 2020. https://eracoalition.blog/media/ ^
  15. LinkedIn. ERA Coalition. Accessed June 25, 2020. https://www.linkedin.com/company/era-coalition-and-the-fund-for-women%E2%80%99s-equality/ ^
  16. Facebook. ERA Coalition. Accessed June 23, 2020. https://www.facebook.com/eracoalition/ ^
  17. Progress America. Facebook. Accessed May 12, 2020. https://www.facebook.com/pg/ProgressAmericaUSA/posts/?ref=page_internal ^
  18. Facebook. ERA Coalition. February 4, 2020 and February 12, 2020. Accessed June 25, 2020. https://www.facebook.com/eracoalition/ ^
  19. Twitter. ERA Coalition. Accessed June 25, 2020. https://twitter.com/ERACoalition?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor ^
  20. Twitter. ERA Coalition. June 5, 2020. Accessed June 25, 2020. https://twitter.com/ERACoalition?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor ^
  21. Twitter. ERA Coalition. May 20, 2020. Accessed June 25, 2020. https://twitter.com/ERACoalition?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor ^
  22. Twitter. ERA Coalition. June 12, 2020. Accessed June 22, 2020. https://twitter.com/ERACoalition?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor ^
  23. Pass the ERA Supporters. Roosevelt House Public Policy Institute at Hunter College. Accessed June 25, 2020. https://pass-the-era-today.weebly.com/supporters.html ^
  24. Twitter. ERA Coalition. April 23, 2020, April 27, 2020 and June 4, 2020. Accessed June 25, 2020. https://pass-the-era-today.weebly.com/supporters.html ^
  25. Carol Jenkins. LinkedIn. Accessed June 22, 2020. https://www.linkedin.com/in/carol-jenkins-b9a82217/ ^
  26. Fund for Women’s Equality, Return of Organization Exempt From Income Tax (Form 990), 2018, Part VII. Accessed June 22, 2020. https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/display_990/471180199/08_2019_prefixes_46-47%2F471180199_201812_990_2019081616575482 ^
  27. Jessica Neuwirth. Equal Means Equal. Accessed June 22, 2020. https://equalmeansequal.com/jessica-neuwirth/ ^
  28. Equal Rights Amendment Coalition, Short Form Return of Organization Exempt From Income Tax (Form 990EZ), 2018. Accessed June 18, 2020. https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/organizations/471170242/201911359349201176/full ^
  29. Fund for Women’s Equality, Return of Organization Exempt From Income Tax (Form 990), 2018, Schedule R, Part II. Accessed June 22, 2020. https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/display_990/471180199/08_2019_prefixes_46-47%2F471180199_201812_990_2019081616575482 ^

Directors, Employees & Supporters

  1. Lauren Embrey
    Board Member
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Equal Rights Amendment Coalition


New York, NY