The Federal Judges Emergency Affects Women -- The Time to Act is Now!
Our civil and constitutional rights and individual liberties are protected by a strong and effective judiciary. So, with the Supreme Court beginning its term this month, now is a perfect time to focus on a threat to the hard-won victories of the women’s and civil rights movements: the "judicial emergency" created by vacancies in courtrooms nationwide.
Ask your senators to help protect our freedoms by moving forward with judicial confirmations!
Not only can the federal courts be a shield for civil rights laws like Title IX and the Equal Pay Act, they’re often the last, best hope for women who have experienced discrimination in education, employment, health care and in other aspects of their lives. A strong judiciary is critical to American women. Yet with the Senate dragging its heels,we're on track to have more vacancies at the end of the 112th Congress than we did at the start.
Furthermore, the diversity of the courts is being stunted by the slow confirmation process. In recent years, more of the individuals nominated to the federal bench have been women or minorities than in the past. But in spite of the many qualified women and minorities who have been nominated to the bench, the judicial vacancy rate is nearly 11 percent, with 92 vacancies on Federal courts around the country. Moreover, of the 27 nominees currently on the Senate calendar, one third (nine) are nominated to fill vacancies classified as emergencies, 12 are women or people of color, and all but one had broad bipartisan support in committee.
So that’s why we need you to send a message to the Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY). Ask your senators to urge Reid and McConnell to quickly call for confirmation of the federal judicial nominees from your state and move all consensus nominations to the Senate floor immediately for confirmation.
The vacancy crisis can have an easy solution, but we need your help. To send a letter to your senators, visitAAUW"s Two-Minute Activist.
Remember: You can always help strengthen AAUW's efforts to support a strong and diverse federal judiciary by making a tax-deductible donation to AAUW's Public Policy Fund!
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