Poverty

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.

TRANSITION FORUM--Women’s eNews Founder and Editor-in-Chief Calls for Office of Maternal Health, Title IX Task Force, and More

November 7, 2008 Posted by Rita Henley Jensen, Founder and Editor-in-Chief, Women’s eNews As The Memo: A Status Report on U.S. Women produced this summer by Women's eNews documents, we’ve seen a decline in U.S. women's wellbeing during the last decade: Our labor force participation is down; the wage gap is persistent, women's health indicators are falling, violence against women is likely to increase during the recession and lesbian or suspected lesbians who are in the military are most likely to be discharged under the Ask Don't Tell policy.  Bias against women is systematic and needs to be addressed in a systematic way. To move women and the issues women care about most from the margins to the center in this new administration, President Obama should hold a joint monthly with the women's caucuses of the House and Senate.   He should also consider the suggestions outlined below. New Appointments, Task Forces, and Advisory Positions I have two strong candidates for the Secretary of Treasury Post and both are brilliant and neither has made public statements insulting women's abilities in math and science, as has Lawrence Summers, who is currently under consideration.  They are: 1. Brooksley E. Born is now chair of the board of the National Women's Law Center. From 1996 to 1999 she was chair of the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission the federal government agency that oversees the futures and commodity option markets and futures professionals.  While at the CFTC, Born served as a member of the President's Working Group on Financial Markets and the Technical Committee of the International Organization of Securities Commissions. She was fired from her post because she dared to urge tighter regulation of trading in derivatives.  She was given her pink slip by none other than, yes indeed, , Mr. Shortlist for Treasury Secretary himself, best know for challenging the existence of gender bias and for his statement that "innate differences" between men and women might explain why fewer women succeed in those careers.


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TRANSITION FORUM – Women’s Funding Network President/CEO Chris Grumm Urges New Gov't to Embrace Women as Experts,Decision Makers

November 7, 2008 Posted by Linda Basch Linda Basch: What is your vision for an Obama administration?  Who are your ideal Cabinet picks? What new offices, government departments, or agencies would you like to see set up? (We invite your biggest-sky thinking here, far out of the box!) Chris Grumm: Barack Obama's election is an exhilarating opportunity for new leadership and especially for women's leadership. This is a truly exciting time in history and we are on the cusp of a transformational moment for the world. Obama, both now as he creates his team and after January 20th, can bring a critical mass of women to decision-making tables, harnessing the visions of the best and brightest women from business, academia, government and the nonprofit world. This step-change - the infusion of women's ideas voices and leadership across the board - will catalyze real change in this country and worldwide. Rather than creating new agencies, Obama needs to reframe how existing agencies work. Women must be recognized as experts and partners in every agency, ensuring their voices and solutions are integral to policymaking on every critical national and global matter. We have the opportunity to ensure established departments and agencies function for the benefit of us all, fully addressing conditions challenging women and families who are disproportionately affected by issues such as poverty or unequal access to healthcare. Below are a few examples of how existing departments could embrace a new, expanded focus to achieve greater impact:

  • Every department collecting data on women;
  • the Department of Labor making major strides on the economic self sufficiency of women and their families;
  • the Department of Health and Human Services ensuring access to health care for everyone;
  • the Department of State practicing global compassion and collaboration with foreign policy negotiations;
  • and a Department of Education focused not only on excellent education for children but on the involvement of families and communities in the preparation of our future workforce.

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Women Leaders Dream Big, Urge Transition Team to Bring Women and Women’s Issues to the Center of the New Administration

November 7, 2008 posted by Linda Basch A new administration, the cap to a long and exciting election campaign, and change is in the air. We have much hope, but we also have big issues to tackle.  The economic crisis brings particular urgency to the issues foremost on our minds.  At the Council, we've been talking about economic security, but now we need to talk about economic recovery  and the ways women are particularly affected.  Women are more likely to be in foreclosure and hold sub-prime mortgages (32% more likely than men despite better credit scores), more likely to be poor, to be earning minimum wage (68.4% nationally), and to lack adequate health insurance.  These challenges are not unique to women, they affect families, communities, and the entire nation.


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Feminist Town Hall November 5, 2008 Live @ 7 PM ET

November 5, 2008 posted by Vivienne Heston-Demirel Apologies for audio problems. It is 7:30 and we are going LIVE.

7:27pm

Michelle Goldberg - journalist/author, specialized in ideology and politics - said she was optimistic but that there were a few dark clouds, namely, anti-gay ballot initiatives that passed in California, Florida, Arizona (anti-gay marriage), and Arkansas (anti-gay adoption). All of the anti-choice initiatives failed. There is a potential for extreme right-wing terrorism, including attacks on abortion providers.

7:45pm

Andrea Batista Schlesinger - Executive Director, Drum Major Institute for Public Policy - just concluded her opening statements.

7:48pm


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SWING STATE FORUM--The View from Michigan

October 31, 2008 Posted by Linda Basch

Below is my exchange with Susan W. Kaufmann, Associate Director for Advocacy at the University of Michigan Center for the Education of Women, where she addresses issues important to women through research and action.  She holds an MS in environmental advocacy from the University of Michigan.

Linda Basch: What are the key issues facing women in your state?


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SWING STATE FORUM--The View from Idaho

October 31, 2008 Posted by Linda Basch 

Below is my exchange with Lisa McClain, Director of Gender Studies and an Associate Professor in the Department of History at Boise State University. In addition to her teaching and authoring of books and articles, Lisa is active on issues regarding women and religion, women and disability, violence against women and women in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields.

 

Linda Basch: What are the key issues facing women in your state as they get ready to hit the polls?


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Council and Boise Member Center Address Women in Idaho

October 28, 2008. Posted by Linda Basch, President, National Council for Research on Women I'm pleased to share with you an op-ed I co-authored with Lisa McClain, Director of Gender Studies at Boise State University, appearing in today's Idaho Statesman.  The piece begins like this: Women, who are being aggressively courted by both campaigns, have much at stake in this election. Now that attention has turned from lipstick to the economy, perhaps we can start a dialogue on what really matters to women voters in Idaho. This election season has prompted many in the press, and even among women themselves, to wonder out loud: Can women "have it all"?


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Ruth E. Zambrana on Health: "Real Change, Not Reform!"

October 24, 2008 posted by Linda Basch


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Jane Plumber Gets Airtime Over at CNN.com

Oct 17, 2008 posted by Linda Basch Today I posted an op-ed over on CNN.com, titled "What About Jane Plumber?" Here is how it begins: "The all-too-familiar talking points of the candidates reverberated through the air waves for a third and last time on Wednesday, but one key voting constituency was missing from the debate, namely, Jane Plumber, and, more specifically, Jane's retirement funds.

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Why Women are Poor in Retirement

Oct 15, 2008 WHY WOMEN ARE POOR IN RETIREMENT By Cindy Hounsell President of the Women’s Institute for a Secure Retirement As the candidates get ready for their debate tonight, there are a few things I would like to tell them. First, Social Security is intended to replace approximately 40 percent of an average earner’s wages, but many women rely on it as their primary or only source of retirement income. This is one of the major reasons why so many women are poor or near poor.


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