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house Bill H.R. 1773

Should ‘Rosie the Riveter’ Receive a Congressional Gold Medal in Recognition of Women’s Contributions to the Workforce During WWII?

Argument in favor

Rosie the Riveter represents women’s important contributions to the workforce during World War II. This symbol of women’s empowerment and their vital role in the U.S. war effort deserves recognition with a Congressional Gold Medal and commemoration with collectible duplicate coins.

jimK's Opinion
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11/14/2019
Recognizing citizens for their role in dedicated and, at that time, unusual service to our country is a valid thing to do; a governmental recognition of the patriotic, selfless and life changing service of women to support the common good. It is a welcome recognition of their patriotic contribution to the future of our country and a reminder to all of our citizens of the value of our patriotic duties. It is an affirmation of women’s contribution to our society. Who knows, it may actually trigger, finally, a long overdue ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment.
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OlderNWiser's Opinion
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11/15/2019
Yes, and the contributions of Black women must be honored.
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Keith's Opinion
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11/13/2019
On the one hand, Rosie the Riveter represents the contributions that women made to the workforce during WWII. But on the other, she is a reminder of white privilege. Because women of color had been working for many decades before this. So while this medal is a symbol of the advancement of gender equality in the workforce, it should also serve to remind us all that we have work to do regarding gender equality for people of color as well.
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Argument opposed

Rosie the Riveter’s profile is already high enough, and similarly, women’s important role in World War II is already recognized. There’s no need for an expensive Congressional Gold Medal — the costs of which the Mint may or may not recoup — to recognize Rosie the Riveter and women’s role in WWII.

Martha's Opinion
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11/17/2019
J....S CH....T!!!! Stop fooling around with unsubstantive things in Congress -- PASS THE EQUAL RIGHTS AMENDMENT, and other needed legislation, like infrastructure bills, gun control, a sane, common sense immigration law, that recognizes children brought to the U.S. by their parents, ETC ETC ETC.
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James's Opinion
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11/14/2019
That’s expensive as a lot of women were Rosie The Riveter and Long in the grave! Send my Mom’s gold medal to me! And my Grandmother as she worked at Harley Davidson furring WWII and HD made then and still does make motorcycles for the Military! Ok! Rosie the Riveter is a cartoon pic of millions of women that stepped into men’s jobs during The War! So tell all the Socialist Lefties that those of us that had mothers and grandmothers working during The War that we all want expensive Gold medals! The Fed Gov already has my address so they can just ship it! Thanks👍🇺🇸🍺💯😇
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Joan's Opinion
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11/14/2019
It would be better for the country if congress got real work to vote on and pass real solutions.
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What is House Bill H.R. 1773?

This bill — the Rosie the Riveter Congressional Gold Medal Act of 2019 — would direct the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives to make appropriate arrangements for the award of a single Congressional Gold Medal to Rosie the Riveter (i.e., any female individual who held employment or volunteered in support of the war efforts during World War II). This would be awarded in recognition of their contributions to the U.S. and the inspiration they have provided to ensuing generations.

The medal would be displayed at the National Museum of American History, which must make the medal available for display at other locations associated with Rosie the Riveter.

To help recover the medal’s costs, the U.S. Mint would be authorized to strike and sell bronze duplicates of the model at a price that covers production costs for both the medal and the duplicates.

Impact

Women who entered the American workforce during World War II; Rosie the Riveter; U.S. Mint; National Museum of American History; President pro tempore of the Senate; and Speaker of the House of Representatives.

Cost of House Bill H.R. 1773

$3.00 Billion
Based on the costs of recent medals produced by the Mint, the CBO estimates that enacting this bill would increase direct spending by a total of about $35,000-$35,000 (of which $25,000-35,000 would be for the cost of the gold and about $5,000 would be for the costs to design, engrave, and manufacture the medal). Some of these costs would be recouped by the Mint selling bronze duplicates to the public.

More Information

In-Depth: Sponsoring Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA) reintroduced this bill from the 115th Congress to award a Congressional Gold Medal to the American women who joined the workforce during World War II, in recognition of their contributions to the nation and the war effort. When she introduced this bill in the 115th Congress, Rep. Speier said

“I have had the honor and privilege of working with two real life Rosie the Riveters. Phyllis Gould has been a driving force behind the efforts to gain national recognition for all the Rosies, including herself and her sister Marion Sousa, who is an official volunteer at the Rosie the Riveter WWII Home Front National Historical Park in Richmond. I have also had the joy of working closely with Rosie the Riveter Park Ranger Betty Reid Soskin, who provided critical help during the war effort. These sheroes continue to blaze the trail for today’s working women, and future generations. It’s long past time that they be honored for their courage, sacrifice, and contributions to our country, and I can think of no finer recipients for the Congressional Gold Medal.”

Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA), an original cosponsor of this bill’s Senate companion, adds

“World War II called upon Americans to serve in different ways. While brave service members fought abroad, women all across the nation were inspired to join the workforce due to the iconic image of Rosie the Riveter. By honoring this cultural icon, we enshrine the contributions of those women."

Wayne D. Perry, Pennsylvania State Commander of the Pennsylvania Veterans of Foreign Wars, expresses his organization’s support for this legislation: 

"Our nation owes a big debt of gratitude to women who worked tirelessly and with great dedication during the World War II to support America's war effort against enemies of freedom. Many thousands of women worked in factories, with tools in their hands and sweat on their brows, to build and test machines, and supply ammunitions, that were needed on the front lines. Without this incredible workforce of women, our fighting forces overseas may not have had everything they needed to defeat the Axis forces. Therefore, the VFW supports the creation of this medal and its placement in the National Museum of American History.”

Rep. Speier filed a motion to place this legislation on the Consensus Calendar on September 12, 2019. There are 293 bipartisan House cosponsors of this legislation, including 229 Democrats and 64 Republicans. Its Senate companion, sponsored by Sen. Bob Casey (D-PA), has 18 bipartisan Senate cosponsors, including 15 Democrats and three Republicans.

Last Congress, this legislation had 29 bipartisan House cosponsors, including 28 Democrats and one Republican. Its Senate companion, sponsored by Sen. Casey, had 11 bipartisan Senate cosponsors, including nine Democrats and two Republicans.

The American Rosie The Riveter Association, Pennsylvania Veterans of Foreign Wars, Marine Corps League, Philadelphia Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund, SMART States Congressional Initiative, and other military veteran organizations support this legislation.


Of Note: During World War II, widespread male enlistment left large holes in the industrial labor force, which were filled by women. Consequently, from 1940 to 1940, women went from making 27% to nearly 37% of the workforce. Rosie the Riveter — a bandana-wearing woman in a denim work suit — was the star of a campaign designed to recruit female workers for defense industries.

By the end of World War II, nearly one out of every four married women worked outside the home. These women, who were sometimes called “Rosie the Riveters,” worked in a broad range of industries. The aviation industry saw the largest increase in female workers: in 1943, there were more than 310,000 women in the industry, comprising 65% of its workforce. 


Media:

Summary by Lorelei Yang

(Photo Credit: iStockphoto.com / Valerie Loiseleux)

AKA

Rosie the Riveter Congressional Gold Medal Act of 2019

Official Title

To award a Congressional Gold Medal, collectively, to the women in the United States who joined the workforce during World War II, providing the aircraft, vehicles, weaponry, ammunition and other material to win the war, that were referred to as "Rosie the Riveter", in recognition of their contributions to the United States and the inspiration they have provided to ensuing generations.

bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The senate Passed on a voice vote
      senate Committees
      Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs
  • The house Passed on a voice vote
      house Committees
      Committee on Financial Services
    IntroducedMarch 14th, 2019
    Recognizing citizens for their role in dedicated and, at that time, unusual service to our country is a valid thing to do; a governmental recognition of the patriotic, selfless and life changing service of women to support the common good. It is a welcome recognition of their patriotic contribution to the future of our country and a reminder to all of our citizens of the value of our patriotic duties. It is an affirmation of women’s contribution to our society. Who knows, it may actually trigger, finally, a long overdue ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment.
    Like (39)
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    J....S CH....T!!!! Stop fooling around with unsubstantive things in Congress -- PASS THE EQUAL RIGHTS AMENDMENT, and other needed legislation, like infrastructure bills, gun control, a sane, common sense immigration law, that recognizes children brought to the U.S. by their parents, ETC ETC ETC.
    Like (15)
    Follow
    Share
    Yes, and the contributions of Black women must be honored.
    Like (16)
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    On the one hand, Rosie the Riveter represents the contributions that women made to the workforce during WWII. But on the other, she is a reminder of white privilege. Because women of color had been working for many decades before this. So while this medal is a symbol of the advancement of gender equality in the workforce, it should also serve to remind us all that we have work to do regarding gender equality for people of color as well.
    Like (13)
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    I met the remaining rosies on my trip to Normandy and its 75 anniversary. They are proud and should be considered national treasures. Their legacy Should be taught and celebrated
    Like (11)
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    Women were invaluable during the war effort, and yet they're still not paid or treated equally. This is a good idea, but I think all women would rather equal rights and equal treatment in the workplace.
    Like (9)
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    They should also be given posthumously.
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    The contribution that American women made during world war 2 changed women and families and the way women moved into the twentieth century for now and for ever!
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    It’s important to make aware of the sacrifices and hardships that females on the home front endured during World War II!
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    I wish my mom, who went to work in a factory during WWII, could have lived to see this proposal. Passage of this bill would be a marvelous tribute to all the women who worked and made sacrifices during the war. Vote yes!
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    It would be nice for women to be recognized. It would be even better if we had equality in areas of income and jobs.
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    What took so long? Oh yeah, the women thingy.
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    Of course! She encouraged women to fight against the tyrants during WWII and contributed heavily during this massive war.
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    That’s cool! Rosie the Riveter medals for women’s service. What would be even better: Equal Pay For Equal Work!
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    These women help win the war
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    I agree
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    She’s an international icon and deserves a medal, unlike Trump’s giving it to his big campaign donor that simply inherited her billions.
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    Could not have defeated the Nazis without them.
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    If it wasn’t for women doing the same jobs as men did when they went to war, where would this country be!!! Women along with those That fought, won the war working in those manufacturing jobs to supply the military!
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    She did the job that men had always done. The men were sent to war. Rosie showed the world that women can do the same work as men. This was allowed. However, women have never received equal pay for doing the same job. We need to work on the pay equality next. Give Rosie the Medal of Honor.
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