Here’s how Pa. ranks in terms of women’s rights | TribLIVE.com
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Megan Tomasic

Pennsylvania is pretty average when it comes to women’s rights.

A new study, the best and worst states for women’s rights, released by security.org, a company that collects security data, research and studies, shows Pennsylvania ranks 29th with an overall score of over 46% compared to other states, based on economic freedom, education, health and reproductive freedom and political participation for women.

“We wanted to examine where women’s rights are strongest in the U.S., so we looked at things like income levels, educational achievement, reproductive rights and political representation to create a best-to-worst ranking of each state and the District of Columbia,” the website reads.

The top 10 were Washington D.C. (65.7%), Maine (57.4%), New Hampshire (55.8%), Oregon (54.7%), Iowa (53.5%), Washington (53.3%), New Mexico (52.9%), Hawaii (52.2%), Nevada (51.9%) and Colorado (51.9%).

The worst states were Louisiana (38.6%), Arkansas (38.9%), Utah (39.5%), Texas (39.7%), Oklahoma (40.6%), Mississippi (41.6%), South Carolina (41.9%), Indiana (42.2%), Tennessee (42.4%) and Georgia (42.7%).

“While some states certainly performed better than others, the truth is that no state stood out as being the far-and-away leader in women’s rights and every state has ample room for improvement,” the site reads.

Security.org released the list almost a year prior to the 100th anniversary of the adoption of the 19th Amendment that guarantees women the right to vote.

Pennsylvania ranks 31st in terms of economic freedom, meaning having the ability to make decisions about everyday life; 25th in education, meaning the number of women with high school diplomas or an equivalent certificate; 27th for health and reproductive freedoms, which takes into account maternal mortality rates, lifespans and restrictions on abortion rights; and 32nd in political participation, according to the website.

To calculate the rankings, security.org compared publicly available data regarding economic freedom, education, health and reproductive freedom and political participation. With those, officials used distinct metrics related to overall freedom, health and happiness, their website reads.

An average of those metrics was then calculated.

“No state really performed particularly well across all metrics,” the site reads.

“For instance, there are several states that have beat back measures limiting reproductive rights, but many of those same states have much-higher-than-median maternal mortality rates.”

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