Proclamation 5850 -- Women's Equality Day, 1988
the President of the
years ago, on
On this day of historic significance, Americans everywhere should pause to salute women for their contributions to our land. Many have won a place in history and in the way we define ourselves as a people -- for instance, Pocahontas and Sacagawea; Dolley Madison and Molly Pitcher; Sojourner Truth and Rosa Parks; Nellie Bly and Sally Ride; Helen Hayes and Kate Smith; Clara Barton and Clare Boothe Luce. They and countless other women, some widely known and many more known simply in family, village, office, or neighborhood, have helped make us and keep us a country both great and good.
Women continue to achieve. For instance, women's economic strides in recent years have been notable. More than 55 million women are now in the labor force, and women hold 60 percent of the more than 17 million new jobs created since 1982. Since November 1982, employment of women is up 19 percent. Many women hold high-paying managerial and professional jobs; women's entry into top management has grown greatly since 1980. Women's real median income grew more than 15 percent between 1981 and 1986. Women are starting small businesses at twice the rate of men, and the gap in wages is steadily closing.
Women's roles continue to grow in other areas, too, such as public service. In this Administration, 1,308 women have achieved senior policy-level positions, and, at all levels of government, 3,039 women have accepted at least one Presidential appointment. In just the first term of this Administration, 37 women served as Presidential assistants. During this Administration, 32 women have received lifetime appointments to the Federal judiciary, and one of them serves as a Supreme Court Justice. Four of the ten female Cabinet members in our entire history have served in this Administration.
On this day, let us recount women's accomplishments and celebrate. But let us also reaffirm, individually and as communities and a Nation, our determination to seek a future of increasing economic freedom, prosperity, and equal opportunity in which all our citizens can fully and freely develop their talents and reach for their dreams for the good of others.
Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the
Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-fifth day of August,
in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty-eight, and of the
[Filed with the Office
of the Federal Register, ,