ERIC Number: ED240006
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Oct
Reference Count: 0
The Swiss Equal Rights Amendment: A Case Study.
Kerckhoff, Richard K.; Leupp, Timothy
The Swiss legal system has been openly protective of male privilege while the American system has traditionally claimed to support equality for all people. Yet the Swiss have succeeded in passing an equal rights amendment in a short time and with little national discord. Because of the nature of their political process, the Swiss were able to move much more quickly than the Americans. Amendments in that country are determined by popular vote, which in this case was held in 1981. Several other political and social factors facilitated passage of the amendment. Well-organized support geared the campaign to the mood of the nation. The amendment was promoted as a humanitarian move which insured human rights rather than womens' rights specifically. Supporters adopted a nonaggressive approach attuned to the traditional attitudes of the Swiss population. Moreover, all political parties, with the exception of the extreme right, supported the amendment. A final consideration concerns the design of the amendment, which calls for gradual social and political change after adoption. While the Swiss example cannot be considered a model for Americans, it does provide additional experience for Americans to contemplate as they reconsider their own proposal. (LP)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Equal Rights Amendment; Switzerland; United States
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Council on Family Relations (St. Paul, MN, October 11-15, 1983).