64th CSG Celebrates Women's Equality Day
It was an evening of recognition and entertainment. Soldiers from all over the 64th Corps Support Group came together to recognize Women's Equality Day on August 26th. The 544th Maintenance Battalion sponsored the event, however it was local soldiers that provided the talent for the evening's performances. Some of the acts included musicians, singers, and poetry readings. There were also speeches from two prominent women in the FOB Speicher area, Lt. Col. Jan Hooper from the 4th Infantry Division and Command Sgt. Maj. Shirley Pharris, who is the 64th Command Sergeant Major.
Pharris recalled one moment earlier in her career where she was discriminated upon because of her gender. "When I first joined the army, I experienced a situation that because I was a female the only work I was capable of doing was sitting behind a desk typing, instead of doing other things… or having to do things that the men didn't want to do… that was all given to the females."
Congress designated the 26th of August Women's Equality Day in 1971 at the request of Congresswoman Bella Abzug. The date was chosen to commemorate the passing of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution, which allowed women to vote.
According to Sgt. 1st Class Ryszard Sahli, the HHC 64th CSG equal opportunity advisor, Women's Equality Day is much more than an important historical anniversary.
"August 26th not only celebrates the passage of the 19th Amendment into legislation, but also calls to attention women's continuing efforts for equality."
Sahli also added that while women are now maintaining jobs men have always had, it is still an upward battle.
"Certain careers are now open for women that weren't held twenty years ago. Women have now gained membership to all male 'clubs'. [However] getting in is one thing, how much she can put up with once she is there, is another."
Sahli further stated that the Army is one place that discrimination will not be tolerated.
"The Army is making every effort possible to maintain equal opportunity for every soldier. If you do feel discriminated notify the discriminator, if it persists file a complaint with your chain of command."
Women's struggle for equality throughout the years has made cause for significant strides in the U.S., which have led to a more just and fair society. While many aspects of society recognize the potential of women, some sects in our many cultures still remain biased. In order to remember women's suffrages and to celebrate their accomplishments of today and those of tomorrow, congress dedicated August 26th Women's Equality Day.
Woman's Equality Day
Woman's Equality Day