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City Generic

City Council Votes to Establish a Women’s Commission Focused on Women’s Equality and Protecting Women’s Rights

Today, at the Regular City Council Meeting, the El Paso City Council voted, 5 to 3, to direct the City Manager and City Attorney to create a Women’s Rights Commission and present it to the City Council at the Regular City Council Meeting on Tuesday, June 7th, 2022.  

The item, which was originally placed on the agenda by City Representative Henry Rivera, District 7 and co-sponsored by City Representatives Peter Svarzbein, District 1, Alexsandra Annello, District 2 and Cassandra Hernandez, District 3, is intended to protect ALL Women’s rights.

“Women have fought for generations to defend their rights. With more than 50% of our population being made up of women, the creation of this commission is long overdue and I am proud that its establishment was approved today,” said City Representative Henry Rivera, District 7. “I thank my colleagues who voted to support my item on today’s agenda and look forward to continue to work with our City Manager and City Attorney on the creation of this commission to empower women in our community.”

“I am honored to have cosponsored item 13 to create a City of El Paso Women’s Commission that passed today,” said City Representative Alexsandra Annello, District 2. “Last week, our community learned of a potential majority opinion draft from the United States Supreme Court about Roe V. Wade, that could also affect the legitimacy of same sex marriage. This Supreme Court decision would remove federal protection of all women and allow states to determine what women’s rights are. Over the last few years we have seen the State of Texas make harmful decisions towards women’s healthcare. I believe local governments play a huge role in fighting for her citizens from addressing the gender pay gap to women and trans healthcare. This commission’s work will be important because it will be giving women the right to be heard and the right for their representatives to fight for women in any way that we can. Having a women’s commission to educate and advocate for our community will only put us in a better position than we have been historically and allow us to make a positive impact for El Paso.”

City Representative Cassandra Hernandez, District 3 said she’s proud to have co-sponsored the item and is appreciative of her colleagues’ support to establish a City Women’s Commission.

“Soon, likely legislative and judicial maneuvers at both the state and federal levels have the potential to rollback rights previously thought inviolable for women in our community,” Hernandez said. “It is therefore, critical that women have a stage at the local level to discuss the matters that affect them directly, whether it be in health, safety, business, childcare, equality, or access to resources. This is an opportunity for women to speak for themselves. This is our right.”

“After approving the creation of El Paso’s first Women’s Commission today during the City Council Meeting, I believe our City will be able to further promote, support and empower women to its fullest,” said City Representative Peter Svarzbein, District 1. “There are no barriers in the City of El Paso that can prevent us from becoming a better community.  We have learned to work together to achieve the impossible and what is best for our City.”

The commission will be made up of women in the community appointed by members of the City Council and will give women in El Paso a unified voice for healthcare issues, advance equality and equity for women, and address the health and economic disparities. Furthermore, the commission will serve as a permanent advisory board to the City Council as they make decisions related to the well-being and advancement of women and their families.

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