SACRAMENTO — To commemorate the occasion of the 49th Anniversary of the passage of federal Title IX protections, Assemblymember Boerner Horvath’s AJR 14 passed the Assembly with a unanimous vote.
Before 1972, when Congress first passed the law, women and girls were routinely discriminated against at educational institutions and often denied access to athletics and extracurricular programming comparable to those enjoyed by their male counterparts. By conditioning federal funding on an institution’s commitment to ensuring equal treatment in recruitment, admissions, counseling, financial assistance, discipline, employment, and athletics, Title IX incentivizes institutions to balance their offerings and promote equal opportunity with respect to gender.
“We still have work to do to achieve full gender parity for young students and athletes, but Title IX created a major push in the right direction, opening opportunities for countless women and girls to learn and achieve,” said Assemblymember Boerner Horvath. “As the mother of a ten-year-old daughter, it’s important to me that she grow up with all the same opportunities as her thirteen-year-old brother, and that’s what this law is all about. California has been a leader on gender equality, and it’s important we remain committed to that in the future.”
While the law protects people of all gender identities from various forms of sex discrimination, Title IX is closely associated with young women’s athletics, and for good reason – since the law passed, high school girl’s participation in sports has increased more than 1000%. The law’s impact in collegiate athletics can be tied to the success of professional teams as well, notably, the top-ranked U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team, which is comprised almost entirely of former collegiate athletes.
This annual celebration of all that Title IX has accomplished comes at a time when seven California colleges and universities are under investigation by the U.S. Department of Education for their handling of sexual violence cases – underscoring inequalities that still exist nearly a half-century later and the need to continue the advancements Title IX inspired.
AJR 14 acknowledges the work that remains and urges Californians to come together to achieve the goal of full gender equality in education and sports.