Family Values @ Work

300 Women’s Groups Send Strong Message to President

300 Women’s Groups Send Strong Message to President

March 2, 2017

America’s women are alarmed by a Trump administration agenda that has already done grave harm to families across the country and undermined essentials rights and protections. That’s why on March 2,  Family Values @ Work and Labor Project for Working Families joined more than 300 organizations across the nation that advocate for women’s rights, equality, justice and inclusion in sending a letter to the president urging him to build a more fair, just and equal nation. The letter comes shortly after the president’s first address to Congress and in honor of Women’s History Month, to send a clear message that America’s women and their families will fight against any efforts to undo hard-fought gains and take the country backward and will fight for a proactive agenda to benefit women and families. We are also sharing the agenda here to help spread the word.

The letter outlines six domestic policy areas that are critical to women and all families, and upon which the community will evaluate the Trump administration’s success. The areas include creating workplaces that work for women and families; securing quality health care and reproductive rights; ensuring income security for all families; addressing and preventing violence; building a quality, affordable and equitable education system; and securing women’s equality under law.

We intend this list of priorities to be a resource for the administration and members of Congress as they make policy decisions, as well as the media, advocates and anyone who cares about how women fare during the president’s tenure. As we note in the letter, when the country’s 157 million women have an equal opportunity to succeed, our entire society and economy benefit.

What follows is the text of the letter on the first area, creating workplaces that work for women and families:

Creating Workplaces that Work for Women and Their Families

The facts are clear: America does not work without women. Today, women make up nearly half of the U.S. workforce, and mothers are the primary or co-breadwinners in nearly two-thirds of 2 families.[1] In 60 percent of married-parent households, both parents hold paying jobs, and in households headed by unmarried women, 71 percent of mothers hold paying jobs.[2] Women will also soon be the majority of college-educated workers.[3] But many of America’s workplace policies, standards, and practices have not changed with the times and because of that, America is losing out on women’s participation in the labor force relative to other countries.[4]

Overall, women in the United States who work full-time, year-round are paid 80 cents for every dollar paid to men who work full-time, year-round, amounting to an annual gender wage gap of $10,470.[5] Black women are typically paid 63 cents and Latinas are paid just 54 cents, while white, non-Hispanic women are paid 75 cents for every dollar paid to white, non-Hispanic men.[6] Asian women are paid 85 cents for every dollar paid to white, non-Hispanic men, even though some ethnic groups of Asian women fare much worse.[7]

Over a lifetime, the wage gap costs women and their families hundreds of thousands of dollars – funds that could fuel their ability to make ends meet, build better lives for themselves and their children, and stimulate the country’s economic growth.

Millions of American women, because of their sexual orientation or gender identity, still live without fundamental protections of their right to work and support their families. Women struggling to honor both their duties in the workplace and as caregivers to children or aging relatives at home often pay a particularly steep price in terms of wages, promotions, and retirement security.

Our commitment to fairer, safer, healthier, and more inclusive workplaces is steadfast, especially in an economy in which workers are too easily discarded and traditional employment relationships undermined by the misclassification of workers as independent contractors.

We will keep fighting for a $15 minimum wage for all workers, including tipped workers, and guaranteed access to paid sick days; strengthened equal pay protections that provide stronger protections and more meaningful remedies; paid family and medical leave that offers adequate wage replacement and covers both women and men for parental, family, and self-care needs; affordable and available child care and early learning for all families, especially for those most in need; fair work schedule protections; protections for pregnant workers; collective bargaining rights; protections against wage theft; and stronger antidiscrimination and anti-harassment laws. We will stand against any efforts to weaken or undermine our hard-won rights and protections and hold accountable any elected or appointed leaders who seek to erode or undermine these rights.

America can only be great when women can participate fully in the workplace, and when our leaders support working women and their families.

[1]Glynn, S.J. (2014). Breadwinning Mothers, Then and Now. Center for American Progress Publication. Retrieved 26 April 2016, from http://cdn.americanprogress.org/wpcontent/uploads/2014/06/Glynn-Breadwinners-report-FINAL.pdf

[2] U.S. Department of Labor. (2016). Table 4. Families with own children: Employment status of parents by age of youngest child and family type, 2014-2015 annual averages. Retrieved 12 February 2017, from https://www.bls.gov/news.release/famee.t04.htm

[3] See note 1.

[4] OECD. (2014). Labour Force Participation Rate By Sex, 15+,15-64 and 15-24 Years Old. Retrieved 13 January 2017, from http://www.oecd.org/gender/data/labourforceparticipationbysex15and15-24yearsold.htm v

[5] U.S. Census Bureau. (2016). Current Population Survey, Annual Social and Economic (ASEC) Supplement: Table PINC-05: Work Experience in 2015 – People 15 Years Old and Over by Total Money Earnings in 2015, Age, Race, Hispanic Origin, Sex, and Disability Status. Retrieved 12 October 2016, from http://www.census.gov/data/tables/time

[6] Ibid.

[7] Ibid. Despite an overall wage gap for Asian women in the United States that is smaller than for other groups of women of color, analysis by the National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum shows there are substantial variations in the wage gap between particular ethnic groups of Asian women and white, non-Hispanic men, with many subpopulations of Asian women facing significantly greater wage penalties. For more information, see https://napawf.org/2016/03/how-the-model-minority-myth-impacts-how we-see-the-wage-gap-for-aapi-women

 

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