The first national women's liberation conference is held in Chicago
The National Abortion Rights Action League (NARAL) is founded.
EEOC rules that unless employers can show a bona fide occupational qualification
exists, sex-segregated help wanted newspaper ads are illegal.
Federally Employed Women is founded to end gender-based discrimination in civil
service jobs. Within two decades, FEW has 200 chapters nationwide.
The Voice of the Women's Liberation Movement appears in Chicago, edited by Jo
Freeman and others. By 1971, over 100 women's movement newsletters and
newspapers are being published across the country.
National Welfare Rights organization if formed by activists such as Johnnie
Tillmon and Etta Horm. They have 22,000 members by 1969, but are unable to
survive as an organization past 1975.
Shirley Chisholm (D-NY) is first Black woman elected to the U.S. Congress.
Chicago women set up "Jane," an abortion referral service. During four
years of existence, it provides more than 11,000 women with safe and affordable
The Boston Women's Health Book Collective publishes the self-help manual Our
Bodies, Ourselves: A Book by and for Women, incorporating medical information
with personal experiences. Nearly 4 million copies sold as of 1997.
California adopts the nation's first "no fault" divorce law, allowing
couples to divorce by mutual consent. Other states follow rapidly.
In Bowe v. Colgate-Palmolive, the Supreme Court rules that women meeting the
physical requirements can work in many jobs that had been for men only.
Betty Friedan organizes first Women's Equality Day, August 26, to mark the 50th
anniversary of women's right to vote.
North American Indian Women's Association is founded.
Sexual Politics, by Kate Millett, is published
The Comision Feminil Mexicana Nacion is organized to promote Latina rights.
Founders include Graciella Olivares, Gracia Molina Pick, Francisco Flores, and
The North American Indian Women's Association is founded.
San Diego State College in California establishes the first official, integrated
women's studies program.
Women wages fall to 59 cents for every dollar earned by men. Although nonwhite
women earn even less, the gap is closing between white women and women of color.
The Equal Rights Amendment is reintroduced into Congress.
Lutheran Church in America and the American Lutheran Church agree to ordain
women; the Lutheran Church, Missouri Synod does not. Barbara Andrews becomes
first woman ordained.
The first battered women's shelter opens in the U.S., in Urbana, Illinois,
founded by Cheryl Frank and Jacqueline Flenner. By 1979, more than 250 shelters
New York Radical Feminists holds a series of speakouts and a conference on rape
and women's treatment by the criminal justice system. Susan Brownmiller's book,
Against Our Will, is one result. Another: the establishment of rape crisis
centers across the country.
For the first time in its 130 years, attorney Ruth Bader Ginsburg successfully
uses the Fourteenth Amendment to overturn a sex-biased law in the Supreme Court
case Reed v. Reed.
Ms. magazine first appears as an insert in New York magazine. Gloria Steinem,
Ms. co-founder and editor, becomes a leading journalist and media personality
for the Second Wave.
The non-partisan National Women's Political Caucus is founded to encourage women
to run for public office.
The first emergency rape crisis hotline opens in Washington, D.C. By 1976 400
independent rape crisis centers operate nationwide offering counseling,
self-defense classes, and support groups.
Title IX of the Education Amendments requires that "No person in the United
States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied
the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program
or activity receiving federal financial assistance."
In Eisenstadt v. Baird the Supreme Court rules that the right to privacy
encompasses an unmarried person's right to use contraceptives.
Congress extends the Equal Pay Act to include executives, administrative and
Congress passes the Equal Employment Opportunity Act, giving the EEOC power to
take legal action to enforce its rulings.
After languishing since 1923, the ERA is passed by Congress on March 22 and sent
to the states for ratification. Hawaii approves it within the hour. By the end
of the week, so have Delaware, Nebraska, New Hampshire, Idaho and Iowa.
Ms. magazine begins regular publication, reaching a circulation of 350,000
within a year.
Barbara Jordan (D-TX) becomes first Black woman elected to Congress from a
Sally Priesand becomes first U.S. woman ordained as a rabbi in Reform Judaism.
Billie Jean King scores an enormous victory for female athletes when she beats
Bobby Riggs in "The Battle of the Sexes," a televised tennis
tournament watched by nearly 48,000,000 people.
The National Black Feminist Organization is established.
9 to 5: National Association of Working Women, is founded by Karen Nussbaum in
Boston. Nussbaum later becomes Director of the Women's Bureau, U.S. Department
The Civil Service Commission eliminates height and weight requirements that have
discriminated against women applying for police, park service, and fire fighting
The Office of Federal Contract Compliance issues guidelines prohibiting sex
discrimination in employment by any federal contractor and requiring affirmative
action to correct existing imbalances.
The U.S. military is integrated when the women-only branches are eliminated.
In a suit brought by NOW, Pittsburgh Press v Pittsburgh Commission on Human
Relations, the Supreme Court affirms the EEOC ruling against sex-segregated help
wanted ads in newspapers. This opens the way for women to apply for jobs
previously limited to men and offering better pay and advancement opportunities.
In Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court establishes a woman's right to abortion,
effectively canceling the anti-abortion laws of 46 states.
Alliance of Displaced Homemakers is founded by Tish Sommers and Laurie Shields
to address issues of divorced and widowed homemakers seeking employment.
Little League agrees to include girls "in deference to a change in social
climate," but creates a softball branch specifically for girls to draw them
MANA, the Mexican-American Women's National Association, organizes as feminist
activist organization. By 1990, MANA chapters operate 16 states with members in
Hundreds of colleges are offering women's studies courses; there are over 80
full programs in place. Additionally, 230 women's centers on college campuses
provide support services for women students.
The Women's Educational Equity Act, drafted by Arlene Horowitz and introduced by
Rep. Patsy Mink (D-HI), funds the development of nonsexist teaching materials
and model programs that encourage full educational opportunities for girls and
Coalition for Labor Union Women founded
The Coalition for Labor Union Women is founded, uniting blue-collar women across
Cleveland Board of Education v. LaFleur determines it is illegal to force
pregnant women to take maternity leave on the assumption they are incapable of
working in their physical condition.
The Equal Credit Opportunity Act forbids sex discrimination in all consumer
credit practices; extended to commercial credit in 1988.
Ella Grasso becomes the first woman to win election as governor in her own
right, in Connecticut.
number of women in public office begins to rise. Women now hold 8% of state
legislative seats and 16 seats in Congress. By 1986: 14.8% of legislative seats,
and 24 seats in Congress. In 1997: 21% of legislative seats, 62 seats in
a series of Mujeres Pro-Raza Unida conferences, Texas Chicanas have organized a
statewide network to promote Chicana awareness, political campaign strategies
and organizing techniques.