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NMCSD Diversity Committee Celebrates Women’s Equality Day
Story by PO3 Harley Sarmiento on 09/05/2019
SAN DIEGO Naval Medical Center San Diego’s (NMCSD) Diversity Committee hosted a Women’s Equality Day celebration Aug. 28, in NMCSDs chapel.
This year’s theme was Women’s Global Right to Vote. The event kicked off with a video highlighting NMCSD servicewomen sharing their experience in a diverse workplace.
“It is important we take the time to recognize how far women have come,” said Lt. Sasha Betz, master of ceremonies for the event. “Women in the military have fought to prove themselves as equals and we are forever appreciative of that.”
Guest speakers during the event gave a brief history on events that led to the right for women to vote in the U.S.. Speakers also spoke on their personal experiences as a woman in the military.
“When I joined the Navy in the 1990s, I called the doctor to make an appointment and the receptionist asked for my husband’s social security number so, I gave her mine,” said guest speaker Capt. Lana Clouser. “She asked again and once again, I gave my social. Finally, I pointed out that my husband’s social would not help her at all as I was the active duty member in the household, there was a long silence before she made my appointment.”
Clouser used this experience to point out that even in the military, it took a while for women in the military to be treated as equals. Women’s Equality Day was established in 1971 as a way to commemorate the long struggle for generations of women to gain their right to vote.
“Much like my story, the federal suffrage movement took persistence,” said Clouser. “It wasn’t until 1920, after many years, that women actually gained the right to vote in all states.”
Throughout the event, attendees reflected on women’s equality and what it meant to them. Guests enjoyed refreshments following closing remarks and the benediction.
NMCSD’s mission is to prepare to deploy in support of operational forces, deliver quality healthcare services and shape the future of military medicine through education, training and research. NMCSD employs than 6,000 active duty military personnel, civilians and contractors in the San Diego region to provide patients with world-class care anytime, anywhere.
For more information about NMCSD visit www.nmcsd.med.navy.mil or www.navy.mil/local/sd