Ten Big Feminist Wins in 2022

It’s been a year for the history books—but it wasn’t all bad. Remember when…

1. Feminists throughout the U.S. mobilized in response to the overturn of Roe.

Demonstrators gather in front of the Supreme Court on May 3, 2022, after a leaked initial draft majority opinion indicated the end of federal protection of abortion rights. (Kent Nishimura / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

In every state, from red to blue, feminists took to the streets to show anti-abortion lawmakers what they thought of abortion bans—and to protest the loss of a fundamental right that women and girls have held for 50 years.

2. Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson was sworn in.

Ketanji Brown Jackson with President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris at an an event marking her Senate confirmation for the Supreme Court on April 8, 2022. (Liu Jie / Xinhua via Getty Images)

Ketanji Brown Jackson became the first Black woman U.S. Supreme Court justice.

3. The Green Wave in Latin America secured major abortion wins.

International Women’s Day demonstrations in Bogota, Colombia, on March 8, 2022. (Perla Bayona / Long Visual Press/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

The power of Latin American feminists is seemingly unstoppable, securing several landmark rulings that stand in stark contrast to the U.S. Dobbs decision.

  • On Feb. 21, Colombia’s Constitutional Court legalized abortion during the first 24 weeks of pregnancy
  • In April, Chile became the first country in the Americas to protect abortion rights in its Constitution.
  • In 2021, the Mexican Supreme Court decriminalized abortion. As of June of this year, abortion is available on request to any woman in Mexico during the first 12 weeks of a pregnancy, or 15 weeks LMP.

4. This year’s Winter Olympics were more gender-balanced than ever before.

Cross-country skiing silver medallist Jessie Diggins (U.S) at the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics Closing Ceremony on Feb. 20, 2022, in Beijing, China. (Maja Hitij / Getty Images)

Though the 2022 Winter Olympics didn’t quite reach gender parity, Beijing 2022 set new records for women’s representation, going down as the most gender-balanced Olympic Games in history.

5. Midterm voters showed up for abortion rights.

A lawn sign in Atlanta on Nov. 7, 2022, the day before the midterm elections. (Elijah Nouvelage / Getty Images)

Voters, including a record-high number of women and Gen Z voters, elected pro-choice candidates and protected abortion rights in six ballot measures across the U.S.

6. Nevada became the 21st U.S. state to add an ERA to its state constitution.

President of the Feminist Majority Foundation Eleanor Smeal (right) and Nevada State Sen. Pat Spearman attend a news conference to call for ratification of the national Equal Rights Amendment (ERA). (Alex Wong / Getty Images)

Nevada voters decided to adopt an Equal Rights Amendment in their state constitution. Nevada’s new ERA is the first to include explicit LGBTQ+ protections. 

Meanwhile, the federal ERA still hasn’t been added the U.S. Constitution, despite eight in 10 Americans supporting constitutional prohibition against sex discrimination.  

7. Colorado voters elected a majority-women statehouse.

Lisa Cutter, right, is a Colorado state representative. (Courtesy of Lisa Cutter)

Colorado became the second state (Nevada was first) to elect a majority-women state legislature, with women slated to hold 51 of 100 seats in both chambers.

8. A record-high number of women of color ran for the House this year. 

In total, 263 women of color ran for the House this year: 92 Republicans and 171 Democrats. 

9. U.S. Women’s Soccer Team will finally receive equal pay.

United States fans hold up an equal pay sign in game action during an international friendly match between the United States woman’s national team and the New Zealand women’s national team on May 16, 2019, at Busch Stadium, in St. Louis, Mo. (Robin Alam / Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

The gender pay gap is as present as ever in the U.S., but the national women’s soccer team will finally receive equal pay. The deal guarantees women and men who play for the national teams will receive the same compensation opportunities—a historic feminist win.

10. Scotland passed the Period Products bill, which makes menstrual products available in public restrooms.

Period poverty remains a pressing issue in almost every country across the globe. Scotland’s passing of the Period Products bill is a historical step towards making feminine hygiene products more accessible.

Up next:

U.S. democracy is at a dangerous inflection point—from the demise of abortion rights, to a lack of pay equity and parental leave, to skyrocketing maternal mortality, and attacks on trans health. Left unchecked, these crises will lead to wider gaps in political participation and representation. For 50 years, Ms. has been forging feminist journalism—reporting, rebelling and truth-telling from the front-lines, championing the Equal Rights Amendment, and centering the stories of those most impacted. With all that’s at stake for equality, we are redoubling our commitment for the next 50 years. In turn, we need your help, Support Ms. today with a donation—any amount that is meaningful to you. For as little as $5 each month, you’ll receive the print magazine along with our e-newsletters, action alerts, and invitations to Ms. Studios events and podcasts. We are grateful for your loyalty and ferocity.


Sophia Panigrahi is a fellow at Ms. and an assistant producer at Ms. Studios. She is passionate about women’s healthcare, domestic violence intervention, criminal justice reform and educational equity.