The U.S. Constitution does not guarantee equality for all Americans. Women, people of color and people who identify as LGBTQ+ experience discrimination more frequently than white men. The 14th Amendment has been interpreted to prevent some forms of discrimination, but the Supreme Court has been hesitant to embrace a 21st-century interpretation of this amendment.
The Equal Rights Amendment was first proposed in 1923 to guarantee equal rights for American citizens regardless of sex. In 1972 the ERA was passed by Congress and sent to the states for ratification. By the 1982 deadline the amendment had only received 35 of the 38 necessary state ratifications. As of 2020 amid renewed interest in support of the ERA, 38 states have ratified the amendment, although the legal ramifications of this support remains unclear.
An Equal Rights Amendment is now part of many state constitutions. On November 27, 1974, Connecticut overwhelmingly voted to adopt their own Equal Rights Amendment.