Ms. Foundation for Women on the Swearing In of the 116th Congress:
“With more than 100 women taking their seats, there are more women –
and women of color – in Congress than ever before.”
NEW YORK (January 3, 2019) – Ms. Foundation for Women President and CEO Teresa C. Younger released the following statement regarding the swearing in of the 116th Congress:
“Today, I am proud that the most diverse new group of lawmakers in history have been sworn in to the 116th Congress. With more than 100 women taking their seats, there are more women – and women of color – in Congress than ever before.
“Thanks to the power of millions of Americans who voted, canvassed, and mobilized in their communities, women, people of color, lower income workers, immigrants and the LGTBQ+ community have a voice in Congress. Representation matters, and the Ms. Foundation and our grantee-partners are committed to changing these disparities so our political bodies truly represent this diverse nation.
“This incoming class will see Native American women serving for the first time, including Sharice Davids of Kansas and Deb Haaland of New Mexico. Rashida Tlaib of Michigan and Ilhan Omar of Minnesota are the first Muslim women to serve in Congress. The state of Texas will be sending its first Latinas to Congress with Veronica Escobar and Sylvia Garcia, and incoming Representative Ayanna Pressley will be the first Black congresswoman to represent Massachusetts, along with Jahana Hayes as the first Black congresswomen from Connecticut. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York will become the youngest woman ever in Congress at 29, with many more milestones in state legislatures across the country.
“Today’s monumental achievement cannot lead us to complacency. Despite these historic numbers, women still only represent a quarter of the legislative bodies of our country. We need more women to run, more women to win, and more women on both sides of the aisle. We need women from all backgrounds and life experiences to truly represent the diverse population of this country.
“The Ms. Foundation for Women and our grantee-partners are committed to lifting up new leaders who can ensure that the issues impacting women are at the forefront of our political conversations. We celebrate today’s class of freshman congresswomen and this milestone towards building power and achieving equity for all genders.”
For over 40 years, the Ms. Foundation for Women has worked to build women’s collective power in the U.S. to advance equity and justice for all. The Ms. Foundation invests in, and strengthens the capacity of women led movements to advance meaningful social, cultural, and economic change in the lives of women. With equity and inclusion as the cornerstones of true democracy, the Ms. Foundation works to create a world in which the worth and dignity of every person are valued, and power and possibility are not limited by gender, race, class, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability or age.