Norton, Duckworth Reintroduce Women Who Worked on the Home Front World War II Memorial Act
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) and Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) reintroduced their Women Who Worked on the Home Front World War II Memorial Act today. The idea behind the bill came from D.C. resident Raya Kenney, when she was 13 years old. Raya wanted to honor the 18 million American women who kept the home front running during World War II, performing tasks previously undertaken by men. This bill passed in the House last year and Senator Duckworth is the sponsor of its Senate companion bill.
Norton said, “Women have largely been ignored in the memorials on federal land in the nation’s capital, even though they played key roles in World War II. My 17-year old constituent, Raya Kenney, the founder of the Women Who Worked on the Home Front Foundation – yes, her own foundation – came up with the idea to honor the women on the home front who supported the World War II effort. Raya wondered why the women on the home front, whose efforts were critical to the war effort, such as codebreakers and the women Air Force Service Pilots (WASPs) who flew military aircraft so men would fly overseas, have not received much recognition for their contributions compared to the men who fought bravely in World War II.”
The bill would authorize the Women Who Worked on the Home Front Foundation to establish a memorial to honor these women. The memorial is designed to be interactive and to educate visitors on the important roles women played during World War II. No federal funds would be required.
“It’s long past time we recognize the contributions hardworking women made during World War II — they rolled up their sleeves and took whatever job was necessary to keep the country they loved moving forward,” Senator Duckworth said. “I’m proud to be re-introducing this bipartisan legislation today that will honor their efforts and help ensure better representation for women in the cherished, world-renowned memorials in our nation’s capital.”
The House passed the bill for the first time in history last year.