Women in the United States
|Women in society|
Convention to Eliminate All Forms of Discrimination Against Women
The United States has never ratified the U.N.'s Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, although it played an important role in drafting the treaty. As of 2014, the United States is thus one of only seven nations which have not ratified it – also including Iran, Palau, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, and Tonga.
As of 2014, women in the United States earn more post-secondary (college and graduate school) degrees than men do.
Equal Rights Amendment
Gender equality ranking
Child marriage, as defined by UNICEF, is observed in the United States. The UNICEF definition of child marriage includes couples who are formally married, or who live together as a sexually active couple in an informal union, with at least one member — usually the girl — being less than 18 years old.  The latter practice is more common in the United States, and it is officially called cohabitation. Laws regarding child marriage vary in the different states of the United States. Generally, children 16 and over may marry with parental consent, with the age of 18 being the minimum in all but two states to marry without parental consent. Those under 16 generally require a court order in addition to parental consent.
Currently (August 2014), there are 79 female representatives in the United States, making up 18% of the U.S. House of Representatives. There are also 20 female senators in the United States, making up 20% of the U.S. Senate. There are currently 3 women in the United States presidential cabinet, including: Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell, Department of the Interior Secretary Sally Jewell, and Department of Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker. As for women in positions that have the status of Cabinet-rank there are also 3 women: Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy, United States Mission to the United Nations Ambassador Samantha Power, and Small Business Administration Administrator Maria Contreras-Sweet. Two of the three Deputy Chiefs of Staff are women, Anita Decker Breckenridge and Kristie Canegallo. One of two Senior Advisors is also a woman, Valerie Jarrett. The First Lady is Michelle Obama and the Second Lady is Dr. Jill Biden.
The United States has freedom of religion as a constitutionally guaranteed right. Christianity claims the largest number of adherents. Not all religious denominations ordain women, and a few (most notably Roman Catholicism) oppose artificial contraception. Many oppose abortion.
Birth control is legal nationwide as of 2014. Abortion is legal nationwide as of 2014; however, states are allowed to place regulations on abortion which fall short of prohibition after the first trimester of pregnancy.
As of 2014, women are 46.5% of the total United States workforce.
Sex discrimination has been outlawed in non-ministerial employment in the United States since 1964 nationwide; however, under a judicially created doctrine called the "ministerial exemption," religious organizations are immune from sex discrimination suits brought by "ministerial employees," a category that includes such religious roles as priests, imams or kosher supervisors.
A woman's median salary in the United States has increased over time, although as of 2014 it is only 77% of man's median salary, a phenomenon often referred to as the Gender Pay Gap. (A woman's average salary is reported as 84% of a man's average salary.) Whether this is due to discrimination is very hotly disputed, while economists and sociologists have provided evidence both supporting and debunking this assertion.
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