Women are more likely to be poor than men, both in the United States and across the globe. Female-headed households are more liable to live in poverty. Families headed by single women in the US are more than twice as likely as other families to be poor. The poverty divide is even more dramatic for people of color: in the US, African-American (26.5 percent) and Latina women (23.6 percent) register much higher poverty rates than white women (11.6 percent). Evidence-based, research-driven policies and programs that recognize the diverse realities of poverty and attack its root causes are critical for producing change.

NCRW Policy Brief: Health

A majority of U.S. citizens has identified access to affordable health care as a priority. Women and girls have additional needs that require urgent attention, such as health disparities and inequalities in disease research and access to services. Women also need portable health care plans since they are more likely to work part-time or interrupt their jobs or career paths to care for children or family members. There is also a need for reproductive health care coverage as well as comprehensive, age-appropriate sex education in public schools.

NCRW Fact Sheet: Health Insurance, Women and Families--Imperative for a Well Nation

Access to affordable health care for all U.S. citizens needs to become a national priority. Making quality health insurance more widely available would have critical, positive impact on the well-being of women and their families.

NCRW Policy Brief: Economic Security

To overcome economic hardship, women need opportunities to learn new skills and earn fair wages in order to support themselves and their families and lead healthy and productive lives. Women’s advancement and well-being also depend on access to basic services and safety nets, such as paid sick leave, affordable child care and elder care, portable health care, adequate housing and secure retirements, including social security.

Equality for Women: Where do We Stand?

The results towards gender equality are mixed at the halfway point of completion of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), the new report by the World Bank and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) says. Women’s health and education have improved substantially in most countries, but progress is lagging on improving their economic opportunities, and investments of some US$13 billion a year are needed to achieve the overall goal of gender equality and women’s empowerment.


Gender Equality as Smart Economics: First Year Progress Report (January 2007- January 2008)

This report provides the first update of Gender Equality as Smart Economics: A World
Bank Group Gender Action Plan (GAP), a year after implementation began in January
2007. The plan commits the Bank Group to ‘do more’ to help achieve gender equality by
more fully utilizing its comparative advantage in the economic sectors and in analytical
The plan’s objective is to advance women’s economic empowerment in Bank client
countries to promote shared growth and accelerate implementation of MDG3. It does so
by making markets work for women (at the policy level) and empowering women to
compete in markets (at the individual level), focusing on four key markets: land, labor,
agriculture, and finance, and on infrastructure, which underpins access to all markets. It
has a four-year time frame (FY07-FY11) and four main activities or ‘windows:’


NCRW Fact Sheet: Women and Poverty

Lifting women and children out of poverty is key to women’s economic security and wellbeing.

NCRW Fact Sheet: Raising the Minimum Wage--Women and Working Families Benefit Most

Failure to adjust the minimum wage with rising inflation has kept women and working families in poverty. Adjusting the minimum wage so that it is a livable wage is key to women’s economic security and well-being.

NCRW Fact Sheet: Affordable Child Care Needed as Women's Labor Force Participation Grows

Making childcare affordable is critical to working families and key to women’s economic well-being and success, particularly
during times of economic recession. Studies demonstrate that childcare enables women to stay employed longer and establish greater work-life balance.

Expert Profile

United States
40° 42' 17.2368" N, 74° 0' 26.0784" W

Kyla Bender-Baird, Research and Programs Manager, is providing the Council with a wide range of research and communications support. She received a BA in Sociology from Principia College and an MS in Women’s Studies from Towson University. Her thesis focused on transgender experiences of employment discrimination. During her time at Towson University, Kyla was a graduate assistant with the Institute for Teaching and Research on Women. On completion of her master’s degree, Kyla served as a Vaid Fellow with the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Policy Institute. Kyla first joined the Council as a research consultant for The Big Five initiative. She has interned previously with Planned Parenthood and the Gender Public Advocacy Coalition.


New York, NY 10005
United States
40° 42' 17.2368" N, 74° 0' 26.0784" W
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