ERA Amendment To Del. Constitution Passes State Senate

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An Equal Rights Amendment to the Delaware Constitution would add “race, color and national origin” to the basic rights of Delawareans guaranteed under the Constitution.

The State Senate voted unanimously Thursday to support the Amendment, sending it to the House for consideration. Delaware and many other states still do not have specific provisions in their constitutions to prohibit the denial or abridgement of equal rights under the law on the basis of race, color or national origin.

“By passing this amendment to the Delaware Constitution, the State Senate today has taken a small but meaningful step on the long road of addressing the original sin of this nation and this state,” Senator Darius Brown, D-Wilmington, said. “Dismantling system racism in Delaware must begin with our founding document. With this legislation, we are saying clearly that all people – no matter their skin color and no matter their background – are guaranteed the basic rights and dignity promised to us for generations.” 

The bill that passed Thursday is the second leg of a Constitutional Amendment, which must pass in two consecutive General Assemblies by a two-thirds ratio.

“Once again, all members of this elective body made clear, that equality of rights will not be denied to any Delawarean on account of their race, color, or national origin,” Senator Ernie Lopez, R- Lewes, said. “To my fellow Senators, I say in my native Spanish: Gracias y sigamos avanzando unidos con humildad y respeto por todos.”