This School Program Trains Young Women To Run For Office And Take A Seat At The Table

They meet every month to talk politics, campaigns, and what’s in the news.

By Bill ZeebleJanuary 23, 2018 10:28 am, , ,

From KERA.

Vilma Ledferd, 17, who sang Saturday at the Women’s March in Dallas, is already experienced using her voice for women’s rights. Wanting to get others involved, she launched a local chapter of Ignite, a national nonprofit encouraging female students to get into politics, last year at her high school.

The Royse City High chapter is one of the state’s first and most active in a co-ed public school. The group gathers every month and talks politics, campaigns, and what’s in the news.

“It’s very crucial for women to get groups like this,” Ledferd said. “Many rights have been denied, and many people are voiceless in communities and in areas that need more political women to understand their issues.”

Anne Moses has believed that forever. She founded Ignite eight years ago so more women could win elections. She says women make up half the population, but don’t hold anywhere near half the elected seats.

“We have pretty much flat-lined over the past several decades,” Moses said. “I mean, we have these kind of fits where we jump a few percentage points, but basically, we’re creeping up very, very slowly, and we’re not getting to parity anytime soon. In fact, at the current rate of change, it’s going to be at least 150 years until the United States reaches political parity.”

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