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KY Women Celebrate 90 Years of Right to Vote

August 19, 2010

FRANKFORT, Ken. - "I am woman hear me roar" will be among the chants and cheers in the state Capitol a week from today as hundreds are expected to gather to celebrate the 90th anniversary of women's right to vote. It was on August 26, 1920 that the decades-long battle by suffragettes was realized.

Eleanor Jordan, executive director of the Kentucky Commission on Women, says the anniversary celebration will boast the Bluegrass state's contribution to the non-violent suffrage movement and educate rally-goers on the hard-fought effort to liberate women's political participation.

"Some of these women were jailed. They were beaten; they were tortured. They were denied their civil rights in legal counsel. They really did put their lives on the line."

Pickering, a filmmaker with Appalshop Community Media Initiative, says contributions by women are often neglected or treated as footnotes in history books.

"Kentucky has been the home of women involved in the suffrage movement such as Laura Clay. But, going from that point on, there have been many strong women who've broken barriers and contributed so much to our political, social and cultural life."

Engaging more women in the political process calls attention to issues that aren't just gender-specific, she adds.

"Women tend to earn less. Women often are taking care of children, concerned about school. All of these are areas where the political arena is really important to our quality of life."

The Kentucky Commission on Women's Votes for Women 90th-Anniversary rally in the state Capitol is set for Thursday, August 26 beginning at 10:30 a.m.

Renee Shaw, Public News Service - KY