5 Things to Know in Advance of Tonight’s Debate

In advance of tonight’s first presidential debate, IWPR helps you get up to speed on these five top women’s policy issues:

  1. Improving Women’s Access to Good Jobs Can Narrow the Wage Gap
  2. A College Affordability Challenge: Declining Availability of Campus Child Care
  3. The Significance of the Gender Wage Gap; Wages among Women of Color are Especially Low
  4. Breadwinner Mothers are Common in Every State, but Policies Need to Catch Up
  5. The Evidence-Based Case for Paid Sick Days and Paid Leave Policies

 

1. Improving Women’s Access to Good Jobs Can Narrow the Wage Gap

>> Read the report, Pathways to Equity: Narrowing the Wage Gap by Improving Women’s Access to Good Middle-Skill Jobs or the Executive Summary. 

Half of the gender wage gap is due to women working in different occupations and sectors than men. Improving women’s access to good middle-skill jobs—in growing sectors, such as manufacturing, IT, and transportation—can help close the wage gap and improve women’s economic security.

pathways-website

Click to visit womenandgoodjobs.org

Visit womenandgoodjobs.org, to read the report and explore an interactive, searchable database of middle-skills jobs, which helps users identify pools of skilled women workers who could be tapped to fill shortages, ensuring that the economy benefits from the talent of its whole workforce.

2. A College Affordability Challenge: Declining Availability of Campus Child Care

>> Read the briefing paper, Child Care for Parents in College: A State-by-State Assessment

As nearly 5 million undergraduate students raising children return to college this fall, a new IWPR state-by-state and national analysis finds that campus child care is declining in 36 states across the country, and that many states have rules making it difficult for students to get child care subsidies.

For the nearly 9 in 10 (88 percent) student parents living in or near poverty, paying for child care can be an insurmountable obstacle. IWPR’s analysis finds that, rather than assisting students with the high cost of child care, 11 states require college students to also be employed to be eligible for child care subsidies. In 3 states—Arizona, Kentucky, and Washington—parents are required to work at least 20 hours per week in addition to attending school, an amount proven to diminish rates of college completion among students overall, in order to be eligible for subsidies.

3. The Significance of the Gender Wage Gap; Wages among Women of Color are Especially Low

>> Read IWPR’s New Resources on Pay Equity & Discrimination, including Five Ways to Win an Argument about the Gender Wage Gap

IWPR’s updated fact sheet clarifies the most common myths about gender wage gap statistics. IWPR’s researchers note that a pay gap of 79.6 percent accurately describes the pay inequality between men and women in the labor force and reflects a variety of different factors, including: discrimination in pay, recruitment, job assignment, and promotion; lower earnings in occupations mainly done by women; and women’s disproportionate share of time spent on family care, including that they—rather than fathers—still tend to be the ones to take more time off work when families have children.

In fact, the annual wage ratio of 80 percent is actually a moderate estimate of gender pay inequality. Women of color fare much worse, with Black women making 63.3 percent of what White men earn per year and Hispanic women making 54.4 percent.

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In addition, IWPR has found:

  • Women earn less than men in almost every occupation and are four times more likely than men to work in jobs with poverty-level wages.
  • If current trends continue, women will not receive equal pay until 2059, according to a related IWPR analysis of trends in earnings since 1960.
  • If women earned the same as comparable men—men who are of the same age, have the same level of education, work the same number of hours, and have the same urban/rural status—poverty among working women would be cut in half and the US economy would grow by $482.2 billion.

4. Breadwinner Mothers are Common in Every State, but Policies Need to Catch Up

>> Read the quick figures, Breadwinner Mothers by Race/Ethnicity and State

A new IWPR national and state-by-state analysis of breadwinner moms finds that four in five Black mothers and two in three Native American mothers are breadwinners, compared with fewer than half of White and Asian/Pacific Islander mothers. Breadwinner moms are either raising children on their own or contributing at least 40 percent of a married couple’s earnings. The majority of Black, Native American, and Hispanic breadwinner moms are single and raising a family on their own, while the majority of White and Asian/Pacific Islander breadwinner mothers are married.

As the share of breadwinner mothers increases, another IWPR analysis found that women’s wages fell 1.6 percent between 2004 and 2014, with Black, Native American, and Hispanic women’s earnings falling around three times as much as women’s earnings overall. (Read the analysis with state data for Black women and Native American women.)

5. The Evidence-Based Case for Paid Sick Days and Paid Leave Policies

>> Read the briefing paper, Paid Sick Days Benefit Employers, Workers, and the Economy

Four in 10 American workers lack access to paid sick days, with access less likely among Hispanic workers and workers in low-wage and food service jobs. A recent IWPR briefing paper compiles all available social science and policy research, which show that paid sick days are associated with benefits to employers—including reduced contagion in the workplace, improved productivity, decreased workplace injuries, and lower employee turnover—and employment benefits to workers, including greater job stability and labor force attachment.

>> Read the report, Paid Parental Leave in the United States: What the Data Tell Us about Access, Usage, and Economic and Health Benefits

Another IWPR report compiles available research and data on the access to paid parental leave and the benefits of such a policy. A growing body of research suggests that paid family leave increases labor market attachment, economic security, and the health and welfare of families and children, and has the potential to help businesses thrive, reduce spending on public benefits programs, and promote economic growth and competitiveness.

Follow @IWPResearch on Twitter and Facebook.

Job Training and Support Services In-The-News: Week of September 19, 2016

Weekly Roundup of the news on women and supportive services in job training programs.

By Asha DuMonthier

Job training can provide an entry into family-sustaining jobs and careers. Many women in job training programs, however, face obstacles to success. Wraparound services—such as child care assistance, access to public benefits, and transportation or housing assistance—can help adults, particularly those with caregiving responsibilities, to complete programs that will ultimately improve their economic standing.


September 22, 2016

Cleveland.com: Nonprofit opens preschool in Cleveland’s Glenville neighborhood: Cleveland Connects: The First 2,000 Days

The nonprofit Centers for Families and Children has opened an early learning center in Cleveland’s impoverished Glenville neighborhood to serve 40 preschoolers for free.

[…] The Centers for Families and Children is a nonprofit that offers low-income families job training, mental healthcare, rent assistance and childcare. Centers also operates the Wade Early Learning Center on Yale Avenue in Glenville.

News Channel 3: One group is empowering and uplifting the community one bag of tea at a time

“My Cup of Tea” is a new business that only hires women in the neighborhood. The Women’s Resource Center or the “house” at the corner of Semmes and Carnes is a place where women in Orange Mound can connect to improve the quality of their lives.

[…] Now through their “Work for Life” and “Tea Life” programs, women can learn valuable work skills and possibly land a job in their community. What we’re doing is training women to specialize in the packing and the labeling and the distributing of imported tea.”

September 21, 2016

Herald Democrat: Workforce Solutions celebrates 20 years in the community

Among the programs offered through Workforce Solutions are job skills training through local colleges and childcare assistance programs for working parents, Bates said. In the past year, Workforce Solutions assisted in providing nearly $3 million in subsidized childcare services.

“Our main goal is to remove barriers that keep people from going to work,” Bates said, citing transportation and childcare as the biggest barriers. Workforce Solutions is among the 28 workforce development boards that were created by in the mid-90s by the Texas legislature.

September 20, 2016

The Kansas City Star: Dog grooming program gave homeless woman a job – and a new life

Using a training course called “The Grooming Project,” EPEC [Empowering the Parent to Empower the Child] helps women claim a path out of poverty. Students train Monday through Thursday, mostly working with two instructors on pets brought in by customers for a $12 wash and clip.

[…] If the women could become certified pet stylists, improve their employment status, make a living wage and learn to manage their lives socially, emotionally and financially, EPEC would succeed. “It’s not just job training like at a vocational college,” Kirsch said. “You still need to have all of those wrap-around services.”

[…] Besides teaching dog grooming skills, life skills are also taught and has partner with other organizations to provide housing assistance, child care and job placement support.

Job Training and Support Services In-The-News: Week of September 12, 2016

Weekly Roundup of the news on women and supportive services in job training programs.

By Asha DuMonthier

Job training can provide an entry into family-sustaining jobs and careers. Many women in job training programs, however, face obstacles to success. Wraparound services—such as child care assistance, access to public benefits, and transportation or housing assistance—can help adults, particularly those with caregiving responsibilities, to complete programs that will ultimately improve their economic standing.


September 14, 2016

PR Newswire: WTIA Workforce Institute Officially Opens Registered Tech Apprenticeship Program, Apprenti, with First Participants in Initial Training Round

The WTIA Workforce Institute today announced the opening of its registered apprenticeship program, Apprenti, the only tech apprenticeship accredited by the State of Washington and a first for the industry. Apprenti will recruit, train, and place at least 600 new tech workers during the pilot. The program focuses on under represented groups including women, minorities and veterans, helping bridge the skills and diversity gap and providing trained talent to the state’s high-wage tech sector. Apprenti officially kicks off today and is currently accepting applications for its first round of participants this fall. The WTIA Workforce Institute also announced that Apprenti will receive an additional $200K in funding from JP Morgan Chase to cover the costs of training its first participants.

September 9, 2016

The Circle News: Measure twice, cut once: carpenters and Summit Academy students

Summit Academy (SAIOC) offers 20-week job training programs that ready students for apprenticeships and internships in the construction trades or in healthcare and medical-related career positions.
The program offerings vary during the year, Shedivy said.

[…] OICs (Opportunities Industrialization Centers) were started in 1964 by theologians serving primarily Black Americans in depressed and under-served areas. The OIC of America network organization, based in Philadelphia, says there are currently 38 affiliate organizations in 22 states “fighting for economic and racial justice through workforce development of underserved and underrepresented communities.”

[…] The national organization said 24 responding affiliate programs reported nearly 12,000 men and women have trained in their programs, and 10,000 of them completed technical education requirements – an 87 percent completion rate despite personal and economic hardships.

September 1, 2016

Carmichael Times: Women’s Empowerment Gains Grant from US Bank Foundation

Women’s Empowerment’s initial eight-week program for women who are homeless in Sacramento provides women with free onsite child care in the group’s child development center and transportation assistance. Each woman works with a master’s level social worker to address her root causes of homelessness, attending classes on job-readiness, confidence and empowerment. She receives health services, focuses on job readiness with her employment specialist and volunteer career mentor, and learns financial literacy. When she graduates after eight weeks, she can access Women’s Empowerment’s graduate services at any point in her life, which include certifications, counseling, GED preparation, access to a professional clothing closet, financial literacy, and paid job training through the group’s Get A Job Kit Training and small business.

Job Training and Support Services In-The-News: Week of August 29, 2016

Weekly Roundup of the news on women and supportive services in job training programs.

By Asha DuMonthier

Job training can provide an entry into family-sustaining jobs and careers. Many women in job training programs, however, face obstacles to success. Wraparound services—such as child care assistance, access to public benefits, and transportation or housing assistance—can help adults, particularly those with caregiving responsibilities, to complete programs that will ultimately improve their economic standing.


August 30, 2016

Huffington Post: #LaborOfLove

If you love your job or believe that work has given you dignity and independence, we invite you to pledge support for those in need of a hand up through the power of work. In observance of Labor Day, between August 30 and September 6, we invite you to sign our #LaborOfLove pledge to spread awareness about Goodwill and the importance of job placement and training programs for people looking for employment.

[…] It’s difficult balancing our demanding lives while earning credentials that matter so employers will hire us. Local Goodwill organizations customize services to help each individual and household along the road to personal and family sustainability by addressing career pathing, job searching, child care, transportation and financial wellness needs.

August 29, 2016

Star Tribune: Minnesota DEED seeks equity grant proposals

The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) is accepting proposals for six competitive grant programs designed to increase economic opportunities for people of color, women, youth, people with disabilities and veterans. The six new programs are part of $35 million in funds approved by the Minnesota Legislature and signed into law by Gov.  Mark Dayton in June.

[…] Women in High Wage, High Demand, Nontraditional Jobs Competitive Grant Programfocuses on closing the gender pay gap and encourages women to enter nontraditional fields such as Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) or construction.

[…] Support Services Competitive Grant Programwill focus on low-income communities, young adults from low-income families and communities of color, offering job training, employment preparation, internships, job assistance to fathers, financial literacy, academic and behavioral intervention for low-performing students and youth intervention.

August 28, 2016

TAP into Sparta: New Jersey Youth Corps to be Offered by Project Self-Sufficiency

The New Jersey Youth Corps will take root at Project Self-Sufficiency this fall.  The program, funded by the New Jersey Department of Labor & Workforce Development, provides young adults the opportunity to augment their literacy skills, prepare for the high school equivalency exam, obtain on-the-job work experience, and transition into a career, college or the military.

[…] Program participants will prepare for the high school equivalency examination, and receive a stipend of $100 per week, based on attendance for the full week.  Free transportation is provided.  Childcare is also provided free of charge at the Little Sprouts Early Learning Center.

Job Training and Support Services In-The-News: Week of August 22, 2016

Weekly Roundup of the news on women and supportive services in job training programs.

By Asha DuMonthier

Job training can provide an entry into family-sustaining jobs and careers. Many women in job training programs, however, face obstacles to success. Wraparound services—such as child care assistance, access to public benefits, and transportation or housing assistance—can help adults, particularly those with caregiving responsibilities, to complete programs that will ultimately improve their economic standing.


August 23, 2016

Juneau Empire: Central Council abruptly reduces employment training, support services

Due to a $650,000 cut in federal funding, Southeast’s largest tribal organization is discontinuing employment training and other services impacting more than 230 tribal citizens throughout the region.

[…] CCTHITA’s work experience program is just one of the effects of the federal budget cut. CCTHITA has received funding from the Bureau of Indian Affairs since 1995 for programs that help low-income individuals get off public assistance through job training and support services. These programs are collectively known at 477 services, which refers to the federal Indian Employment, Training and Related Services Demonstration Act of 1992. This year, CCTHITA had budgeted $2.6 million for 477 programs. Corrine Garza, CCTHITA chief operating officer, said the budget shortfall stems from a lower than expected congressional appropriation to BIA.

[…] Support services were crucial, Martin said. “Just those basic extras that are needed in certain jobs or to assist them to retain employment, like the child care or get them a bus pass, interview clothing, work clothing — all those types of things we’re no longer able to provide to them,” he said.

August 22, 2016

Forbes: Inside Eat Offbeat, The Refugee-Run Kitchen That’s Satisfying Adventurous Eaters with a Taste for Social Good.

Chef Dhuha Jasim grew up eating potato kibbeh croquettes at home in Iraq. Now she earns a living wage preparing her mother’s exact recipe for New Yorkers at Eat Offbeat. The for-profit caterer specializes in authentic cuisine cooked by recently arrived refugee chefs for a growing list of corporate and non-profit clients in New York City. The small business currently employs a dozen of them, and right now, all of them are women.

[…] The women come to Eat Offbeat with a passion for home cooking but no commercial kitchen experience and minimal English skills. That’s where Juan Suarez de Lezo comes in. He’s Eat Offbeat’s chief culinary officer, and an alumnus of Michelin-starred restaurants like El Bulli and Per Se.

[…] The biggest problem is getting new employees to the Long Island City kitchen.

August 19, 2016

The Sparta Independent: Youth Corps offers a brighter future with diplomas and jobs

Project Self-Sufficiency, at a press conference last Thursday morning, announced the launch of the New Jersey Youth Corps to serve Sussex and Northern Warren County residents, ages 16 – 25, who have not completed high school.

[…] The sixteen-week program launches on October 10 and includes assessments, testing, employability skills training, life skills workshops, academic instruction, community service projects, field trips, and counseling services. Program participants will prepare for the high school equivalency examination, and receive a stipend of $100 per week, based on attendance for the full week. Free transportation is provided. Childcare is also provided free of charge at the Little Sprouts Early Learning Center.

Job Training and Support Services In-The-News: Week of August 15, 2016

Weekly Roundup of the news on women and supportive services in job training programs.

By Asha DuMonthier

Job training can provide an entry into family-sustaining jobs and careers. Many women in job training programs, however, face obstacles to success. Wraparound services—such as child care assistance, access to public benefits, and transportation or housing assistance—can help adults, particularly those with caregiving responsibilities, to complete programs that will ultimately improve their economic standing.


August 17, 2016

Calhoun Times: Tallatoona CAP, Inc. works with other agencies to serve Gordon County

According to Tallatoona’s Community Services Director April Rogers, the Pathway to Empowerment Program provides services and support to families who are committed to changing their lives by setting and achieving goals focused on career pathways, education, financial literacy, job training and life skills development. The Pathway to Empowerment Program also includes access to Employment Opportunities, Public Benefits and Income Supports (Childcare, Transportations, Etc.), Career Development, Employment Counseling, GED Assistance, Higher Education Assistance and Resume Development.

August 12, 2016

Gainesville Daily Register: NCTC receives $3.9 million for job training

The U.S. Department of Labor recently awarded a TechHire grant to North Central Texas College (NCTC) for more than $3.9 million. Only 39 entities in the country received this grant designed to help individuals, ages 17-29, overcome barriers to employment. The grant also aimed at veterans and individuals with disabilities, those with limited English proficiency, criminal records, and long-term unemployment.

[…] Participants will receive supportive services and assistance, including tuition assistance and career services.

LVB.com: New Pa. CareerLink Center opens in heart of Bethlehem’s Hispanic community

Pennsylvania CareerLink Lehigh Valley opened a new center next to the Hispanic Center Lehigh Valley in Bethlehem’s South Side to better serve the city’s large Hispanic population. Hispanics who live on the South Side often have trouble getting to CareerLink Lehigh Valley at 555 Union Blvd. in Allentown, either because they lack transportation, work several jobs, can’t find child care or have limited English, officials said.

[…] “This center will surround people coming to the Hispanic Center with access to the support services from the Hispanic Center coupled with the PA CareerLink employment and training tools to help people with career direction, training options and employment,” she said.

August 11, 2016

The Warner Cable News: Health Care Job Training Program Helps Low-Income Individuals Find Better Paying Jobs

More than 100 people in Rochester are registered for a health care job training program through Action for a Better Community. The Health Profession Opportunity Grant is a federally funded program to recruit, train and place low-income individuals into good paying jobs. ABC says early results of its labor program to train more than 1,000 people in health care jobs over the next five years is on track to make a positive difference.

[…] The $1.6 million federally-funded program is a five-year impact study to determine how these training programs help people find better jobs.

[…] The program provides support services, tuition, assistance with transportation to class, housing and childcare. It has more than two dozen community partners like Excellus, MCC, FLCC, BOCES and RochesterWorks.

Job Training and Support Services In-The-News: Week of August 8, 2016

Weekly Roundup of the news on women and supportive services in job training programs.

By Asha DuMonthier

Job training can provide an entry into family-sustaining jobs and careers. Many women in job training programs, however, face obstacles to success. Wraparound services—such as child care assistance, access to public benefits, and transportation or housing assistance—can help adults, particularly those with caregiving responsibilities, to complete programs that will ultimately improve their economic standing.


August 7, 2016

Tuscon.Com: Southern Arizona training program lifts students out of minimum wage

The Pima County Interfaith Council launched Jobpath in 1998. The program offers job training, matches students with scholarships to community college and places students in apprenticeships in the fields they hope to enter.

During the 2014-15 school year, the program supported 225 students, Dusenberry said. Students can receive financial assistance for school as well as for everyday needs, which was a big help for Popp while she earned her degree. Child care was a serious challenge Popp faced while she was in school — her youngest daughter was only in first grade at the time. The program helped with child-care expenses and provided gas cards to help her get her kids to school.

August 6, 2016

Crain’s Detroit Business: Michigan colleges leaders in offering Pell Grants to Prisoners

The college [Jackson College] is one of three in Michigan, and more than 60 across the country, to be chosen to participate in a U.S. Department of Education pilot program that will waive restrictions on federal Pell Grants for prisoners in order to find out whether more prisoners will pursue education if they have financial assistance.

[…] A few years ago, Michigan was one of three states, including New Jersey and North Carolina, chosen to participate in a five-year effort called Pathways from Prison to Postsecondary Education. Sponsored by the New York-based nonprofit Vera Institute of Justice and funded by several foundations — including the Battle Creek-based W.K. Kellogg Foundation and the Ford Foundation, based in New York City — the Pathways pilot offered inmates within two years of their release date in Pontiac and Kalamazoo the chance to take college classes and receive other support services. Researchers will follow the inmates for two years once they’re paroled.

August 3, 2016

Gainesville.Com: $4M grant tackles barriers for job seekers

Once the Opportunity Quest program launches in late fall, CareerSource NCFL and its partners will provide the kind of entrepreneurship training it offered Springer through Startup Quest, as well as technology skills training, paid work experience and childcare for up to 250 parents with children under 13 in Alachua and Bradford counties. There is no cost to the parents.

[…] The agency was one of 11 awarded $25 million out of 127 applications through the Labor Department’s Strengthening Working Families Initiatives.