For up-to-the-minute coverage on issues related to gender equality and our work, please follow us on Facebook and Twitter. In addition, a regularly-updated collection of relevant media coverage is pinned on our Twitter profile. More detailed information is below.
Shattering Glass Files A Second Amicus Brief With The US Court of Appeals For The 5th Circuit In Support of Mifepristone
On April 21, 2023, the US Supreme Court ("SCOTUS") issued its decision in Alliance of Hippocratic Medicine v. FDA, staying the lower Courts' prior rulings, thereby keeping mifepristone available pending a resolution of the merits of the case. For a summary of the earlier proceedings, as well as our amicus briefs, please see our recent blog "Our Fight For Mifepristone And So Much More."
The case has been sent back to the 5th Circuit for a decision on the merits. On May 2, 2023, Shattering Glass filed its second amicus brief with the 5th Circuit. Our briefs have been cited by the Department of Justice Attorneys representing the FDA, as well as in the amicus brief filed by 253 members of the US Congress. A copy of Shattering Glass's May 2nd amicus brief can be found HERE.
Oral argument before the 5th Circuit will be held on May 17th, and it will be livestreamed HERE. While the case remains on a fast track, and most certainly will be appealed to SCOTUS, regardless of the 5th Circuit's decision, a decision on the merits may not come until later this summer.
Shattering Glass Files An Amicus Brief With SCOTUS In Support of Mifepristone
Following the Fifth Circuit's decision, which upheld certain restrictions on mifepristone, including availability by mail and after seven weeks of pregnancy, the US Food and Drug Administration filed an appeal with the US Supreme Court ("SCOTUS").
On April 14th, Shattering Glass, along with its partners in the Reproductive Health Coalition, including founding members Doctors For America and American Medical Women’s Association, again filed an amicus brief in support of the FDA and the continued approval of mifepristone. A copy of Shattering Glass's amicus brief can be found HERE. The brief details the far-reaching impact removing and/or restricting access to mifepristone will have; this is about way more than abortion.
SCOTUS stayed the Courts' prior rulings, so mifepristone remains available. We expect SCOTUS to issue its decision on Friday, April 21st.
Shattering Glass Files An Amicus Brief With the 5th Circuit of the US Court of Appeals In Support of Mifepristone
On April 7, 2023, a Texas judge issued a ruling in Alliance For Hippocratic Medicine v. FDA, withdrawing the FDA approval of mifepristone, a drug that has been approved for use to effectuate chemical abortions for the last 23 years. The decision was stayed for seven days to give the FDA time to appeal.
The appeal was filed with the conservative 5th Circuit of the US Court of Appeals by the FDA on April 10, 2023. On April 11, 2023, Shattering Glass, along with its partners in the Reproductive Health Coalition, including founding members Doctors For America and American Medical Women’s Association, filed an amicus brief in support of the FDA and the continued approval of mifepristone. A copy of Shattering Glass's amicus brief can be found HERE.
It should be noted that mere hours after the Texas ruling was issued, a Washington judge issued a preliminary injunction, blocking the FDA from altering availability of mifepristone, but that decision is limited to the 16 states and the District of Columbia, who sued the Biden Administration to protect access. A copy of the ruling may be found HERE.
The conflicting rulings have all but guaranteed that the issue is on the fast tract to the US Supreme Court. We will continue to fight for access and keep you updated.
Our Executive Director Discusses the ERA on the Lisa Wexler Show
March 31, 2023. To close out Women's History Month, our Executive Director, Nicole Vorrasi Bates, appeared on the Lisa Wexler Show, based out of Connecticut and the greater New York metropolitan area. Nicole, along with colleague Jean Sweeney, Esq., explain how the Equal Rights Amendment is the 28th Amendment and why it needs to be published in our Constitution now more than ever. The entire episode may be found HERE.
Activists Protest Outside National Archives Demanding Publication of the ERA
March 28, 2023. Immediately following the ERA Caucus Press Conference, Shattering Glass, along with partners Equal Means Equal, Generation Ratify, Catholics For Choice, Equal Rights Action, and Justice Revival, protested outside the National Archives (where the US Archivist is located) demanding publication of the Equal Rights Amendment. We shut down blocks of Constitution Avenue and the surrounding area, as well as access to 395S, a major outlet from downtown DC, for hours. It resulted in traffic delays, extending an already difficult rush hour and infuriating opponents of equality. For additional coverage, please check us out on Facebook and Twitter.
US Congresswomen Establish First Evert Congressional ERA Caucus
March 28, 2023. Today, Representatives Cori Bush and Ayanna Pressley, established the first ever Congressional ERA Caucus to ensure that the Equal Rights Amendment ("ERA") is finally enshrined in our Constitution as "Equality is overdue; it is passed due, and we need it now!”
They were joined by Representatives Becca Balint, Nanette Barragán, Judy Chu, Madeleine Dean, Lois Frankel, Steven Horsford, Sydney Kamlager-Dove, Barbara Lee, Sheila Jackson Lee, Summer Lee, Jennifer McClellan, Mark Pocan, Delia Ramirez, Jamie Raskin, and Abigail Spanberger, all of whom will serve as Vice-Chairs of the historic ERA Caucus.
At the related Press Conference, Representative after Representative emphasized that the ERA is long overdue and that we must make it a national priority to protect women, girls and LGBTQ+ people, particularly those of color, from ever-increasing attacks, legislative or otherwise.
Representative Bush noted "38 states have ratified the ERA and all steps necessary to amend the Constitution, they have been completed. And all that is standing in the way is some paperwork."
And Representative Sheila Jackson Lee drove it home:
I want to make sure we say it again. This constitutional amendment IS valid, not to be valid, IS VALID for all intents and all purposes as part of the United States Constitution having been ratified by the legislatures of ¾ of the several states. It is done. It is done. It is done. Ratified and ready. It is done.
That's right. All we need is for President Biden to publish it.
The full Press Conference may be viewed HERE.
Shattering Glass Submits Written Testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee
March 7, 2023. Shattering Glass submitted written testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee for inclusion in the formal record of its Hearing: "The Equal Rights Amendment: How Congress Can Recognize Ratification and Enshrine Equality in Our Constitution." A copy of our written testimony may be found HERE.
By way of summary, we highlight why the ERA is desperately needed. And, in response to the hearing and the Court's decision in Illinois v. Ferriero, we call upon Congress to send a message to the Biden Administration to publish the ERA immediately to end the ongoing attacks on the rights of women, girls and LGBTQIA+ people and finally enshrine equality for all, a bedrock of our nation, in the Constitution.
Senate Judiciary Committee Holds Hearing on the Equal Rights Amendment for the First Time in Nearly 40 Years
On February 28, 2023, we attended the Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing: "The Equal Rights Amendment: How Congress Can Recognize Ratification and Enshrine Equality in Our Constitution," the first Senate hearing on the ERA in nearly four decades. A video of the hearing may be found HERE.
The room was packed with both proponents and opponents of equality to hear testimony related to the ERA and S.J.Res. 4, a bipartisan resolution affirming the validity of the ERA. And still others were waiting to get in.
As one would expect, the opponents of the ERA focused on two issues. The ERA would permit abortions up until the moment of birth, and it would prohibit any regulations based on sex, which would put women's safety at risk and deny girls opportunity to play sports. Fearmongering at its finest as these arguments are grounded in neither fact nor law. Senator Graham even gleefully announced the decision in Illinois v. Ferriero, which, ironically, was issued in the middle of the hearing, to support his false claim that the ERA was dead.
On three separate occasions, brave protestors from Equal Means Equal disrupted the hearing, referring to it as an orchestrated fraud designed to give President Biden cover for blocking and fighting against the ERA, and calling for its immediate publication. See HERE for footage.
U.S. Court of Appeals Issues Decision In Illinois v. Ferriero
February 28, 2023. As the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee held its second hearing on the nomination of Colleen Shogan for U.S. Archivist, and the Senate Judiciary Committee held the first hearing the Equal Rights Amendment ("ERA") in nearly 40 years, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit rendered its decision in Illinois v. Ferriero. A copy of the decision may be found HERE.
Noting that the grounds for compelling a government employee to act “are narrow, and the demands are austere,” the court sided with the Biden Administration and affirmed the lower court’s dismissal of the case for lack of jurisdiction. Specifically, the Court held that that the plaintiff states failed to meet their burden to prove that that the US Archivist’s duty to publish was “clear and indisputable” and that the US Archivist was clearly wrong, due to the existence of the arbitrary deadline in the proposing clause of the ERA.
While the Court's decision was disappointing, it did not rule that the deadline is valid or that the ERA could not be published! Simply that the plaintiffs could not meet the nearly impossible standard applied to compel publication.
The Court’s decision and the heightened, seemingly insurmountable burden of proof applied to proponents of equality, solely as a result of the unlawful interference by the Trump and Biden Administrations with the constitutional amendment process, make publication of the ERA critical to establishing the validity of the ERA and equality for more than half of Americans.
Once published, the ERA will be presumed valid, and the burden will shift back to the opponents of equality to prove that the ERA is invalid. Exactly where it should be and would have been, in accordance with the constitutional amendment process, but for the Executive Branch’s interference.
[This decision makes clear that we must continue to put pressure on President Biden to immediately publish the ERA.
Medical Associations Weigh In on the Need for the ERA and Urging President Biden to Act in Wake of Dobbs Decision
September 12, 2022. Last week, our partners at the American Medical Women's Association sent a letter to President Biden, urging him to publish the Equal Rights Amendment without further delay to save our reproductive rights and guarantee equality for all.
Similarly, the American Medical Association, American Pharmacists Association, American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, and National Community Pharmacists Association issued a Joint Statement, detailing uncertainty and disruptions in care post-Dobbs, which highlight the urgent need for a federal framework. A copy of the Joint Statement may be found HERE.
34 Senators Urge Biden to Act in Wake of Dobbs Decision
June 25, 2022. Immediately following the Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization decision, 34 Senators wrote to President Biden demanding that he take immediate action.
Noting "we cannot stand idly by as Republicans rip away women’s rights" and acknowledging that Biden has the power to fight back, the Senators urged him to use immediately every tool available to him. Yet they did not specify the tool.
The tool is the Equal Rights Amendment. If Biden stops blocking and fighting against the ERA in court, like Trump, he can save Roe v. Wade and equality for all.
SCOTUS Issues Opinion in Dobbs, Overturning Roe v. Wade & Casey v. Planned Parenthood
June 24, 2022. Today, the Supreme Court issued its long-awaited decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health. Not only did the Court overturn Roe v. Wade, but it eviscerated women's rights to equal protection under the 14th Amendment, setting us back to 1868. A copy of the decision may be found here.
This decision makes publication of the Equal Rights Amendment, which saves Roe v. Wade and equality for all, even more urgent. See our blog "Democrats Have Key to Unlock Equality for All and Save Roe" for additional information.
Based on our discussions with Congress and the White House, it is going to take a large public outcry pressuring the President to publish the ERA. In the days and weeks to come, we will post action items for you to consider taking. Please join our mailing list and/or check back regularly.
Also, please follow us on social media, share our posts/tweets, and spread the word to like-minded friends and colleagues. Here is a video we took at the protest at SCOTUS this afternoon following the release of the opinion.
IMMEDIATE RELEASE: How Publication of Equal Rights Amendment Saves Roe v. Wade
May 9, 2022. The leaked Supreme Court opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization, overturning Roe v. Wade, is only a draft, and Roe remains the law of the land.
Although this is an unprecedented leak from the nation’s highest court, overturning Roe was not unexpected. However, the draft Dobbs opinion dismantling a federal Civil Rights framework, if finalized, would, under the originalist/textualist interpretation of the Constitution, allow the states to create their own Civil Rights framework around contraception, same sex marriage, interracial marriage and more.
Validation of the Equal Rights Amendment, through publication, can save Roe and is now more important than ever.
A brief summary of the immediate steps needed to save the Civil Rights framework of Roe and the accompanying analysis may be found HERE.
Publication of the Equal Rights Amendment Saves Roe v. Wade
May 5, 2022. The Equal Rights Amendment ("ERA") has been ratified by 38 states and, having met all of the constitutional amendment requirements, is currently the 28th Amendment of our Constitution.
Since November, Shattering Glass has worked tirelessly to secure its publication. We have had countless meetings and correspondence with White House Counsel and U.S. Senators regarding the publication of the ERA and how it can save Roe v. Wade and equality for all.
In light of the draft opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization that was leaked earlier this week, more is at stake than expected, making publication that much more urgent.
The strategy to save reproductive rights may be found HERE.
Visit our Take Action Page to find out how you can help!
Draft Opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health
May 3, 2022. Last night, a draft Supreme Court opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which would overturn Roe v. Wade was leaked to the public. Note this is only a draft, and Roe remains the law of the land.
This is an unprecedented leak from the nation’s highest court, but overturning Roe was not unexpected. However, the draft opinion, if finalized, would go even further and almost ensures future attacks on contraception, same sex marriage, interracial marriage and more.
Publication of the Equal Rights Amendment, which can save Roe, is more important than ever.
See our Take Action Page to learn how you can help!
Biden Department of Justice Continues to Fight Against Equal
March 5, 2022. Yesterday, the Biden Department of Justice ("DOJ") filed its brief in the case initially brought by the States of Virginia, Nevada and Illinois to compel the U.S. Archivist to publish the Equal Rights Amendment ("ERA"). Virginia has since withdrawn from the case as a result of a state-level change in administration.
Sadly, the Biden DOJ continues to carry on the Trump Administration's fight against the ERA and equality for 167 million women and girls, despite Biden's alleged support for the ERA, set forth in the brief, as well as the Biden Agenda for Women.
A full copy of the Biden Administration's brief may be found here.
Shattering Glass files Amicus Brief in Support of The Equal
January 10, 2022. Today, Shattering Glass, along with partners in the ERA Coalition, filed an amicus brief in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit in support of the Equal Rights Amendment to the U.S. Constitution ("ERA"). The case was filed by the Attorneys General of the last three states to ratify the ERA -- Nevada, Illinois, and Virginia -- to compel U.S. Archivist, David S. Ferriero, to publish and certify the ERA. The Court previously dismissed the case for supposed lack of jurisdiction.
We are proud to sign on to the brief as the Archivist and the Executive Branch lack the authority to deny women equal rights under the Constitution by refusing to publish and certify the ERA, now that it has been ratified by the requisite 38 states. A full copy of the brief can be found HERE.
The ERA, the first crucial step towards much-needed and long-overdue gender equality, should take effect on January 27, 2022, two years after Virginia became the 38th state to ratify.
A copy of the original Complaint may be found HERE.