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Happy International Women’s Day! A Blog Carnival Calling All Women to Send a Message of Strength

March 8, 2012
Happy International Women’s Day, and welcome to the first #callingallwomen blog carnival. This March – Women’s History Month – 25 women’s funds from across the U.S. are uniting to promote solutions to the critical issues that women face. Against the backdrop of an intensified war on women, the “ Calling All Women: Send a Message of Strength ” campaign is raising awareness of the inequality that exists and highlighting the change that women’s organizations are advancing in communities around the country. The campaign is encouraging women to “Sound Off” about the issues that matter most in...
Anika Rahman's picture

The Value Of A Woman

March 8, 2012
In theory, a year of human life is priceless, or so says Kathleen Kingsbury in her Time/Health Article ‘ The Value Of A Human Life .' In reality, she goes on to write, it's worth $50,000. That's the international standard most private and government-run health insurance plans worldwide use to determine whether to cover a new medical procedure . When we read statistics, like how many people died during the tsunami in Japan last year, numbers say something like 15,839 died, 5,950 were injured, and 3,642 are still missing, those are numbers we hear, evaluate, and say – "Oh My God, that’s awful...
Joy Rose's picture

Rhode Island: We’ve got your back for paid family leave

March 8, 2012
Ten years ago I was standing on a balcony, trying to coax my puppy, Sabrina, back inside. Sabrina was barking wildly, but not moving. As I stepped towards her, the balcony collapsed. I fell two stories, directly against a brick wall, and landed on cement stairs. Thankfully, for me, there had been a late spring snow that cushioned my fall. I broke a vertebra that day, but after a week in the hospital, three months in a body brace, and 6 months of physical therapy, you would never know how close I came to paralysis. My husband and I had moved to Rhode Island just a couple of years before. We...
Gayle Goldin's picture

Barefoot and Pregnant: What This “War on Women” is Really About

March 8, 2012
Women’s History Month is arriving this year in the midst of a “War on Women.” Many of the battles in today’s war are being fought on familiar ground—around women’s reproductive health and choice—but the surrounding context is quite different from that of wars gone by. In today’s America, women make up half of the workforce and many of them are primary earners for their families. Millions of families rely on women to afford food, health care, education, housing and the other essentials of life. And our economy relies on women to feed its engines of production. But in order for women to work,...
Phoebe Taubman's picture

A Day in the Lives of 15 Working Mothers

March 7, 2012
Have you ever wondered if your work day is anything like other working mothers days? Recently, my website followed the working day of each of our work-mom bloggers (15 of us!) and we found it fascinating to see how alike our days actually are. (Credit for this terrific idea goes to our blogger Christa Allard) A few themes we discovered: We are all, very, very tired at the end of the day. We often use the TV to entertain our kids while we get ready for work in the morning and/or try to prepare dinner at night. Working moms are heroes! Seriously. It's amazing how much each...
Michelle Noehren's picture

Working Parents Need Protections Now

March 5, 2012
Ever wonder what happens to a worker who becomes disabled for weeks from injuries in a car accident? Or the worker who has a baby but no maternity leave? Or the worker whose parent, suffering from Alzheimer's, falls and hits his head and can no longer live alone? Here's what happens, and neither option is appealing: One, they stay home, a necessity in such cases as an auto accident or giving birth. It risks losing pay, and, sometimes, the job. In either case, it can set off a downward spiral. A 2001 Harvard Law School study found that a quarter of two-income couples who filed for bankruptcy...
Ann OLeary's picture

Heavy Lifting, Part II: Discrimination Against Mothers is the Strongest Form of Gender Bias

March 1, 2012
co-written with Rachel Dempsey In the last post, we talked about the problem of pregnancy discrimination against women in hourly jobs - cases where mothers were refused simple accommodations that would help them have healthy pregnancies. Discrimination against pregnant women and mothers is a huge problem for working-class women, for whom a single missed day at work could mean that they lose both their jobs and the ability to support their families. Professional women, by and large, are more likely to have flexible schedules and are more likely to be given paid maternity leave than working-...
Joan C. Williams's picture

Wow! Moms really want paid family leave!

February 23, 2012
A few weeks ago, we asked MomsRising members to sign our petition urging Congress to support paid family leave, and the response was huge. Nearly 10,000 people signed the petition so far. We want to keep up the MOMentum and get to 15,000! Click here to sign the petition (And if you’ve already signed, thank you! Feel free to send the link to friends and family so they can sign too!) MOMentum for paid leave is growing at the grassroots level. We frequently hear from our members about how important paid leave policies are for their families’ health...
Ruth Martin's picture

Heavy Lifting: Pregnant Women are Forced to Carry an Extra Load in the Workforce

February 21, 2012
In the 1970s, after it became illegal to discriminate based on race, some employers responded by imposing high school education requirements for blue-collar jobs. Today, employers who want to keep women out of “men’s jobs” do something similar: they wait until workers get pregnant, and then deny them “light duty,” like desk work for a police officer, for example, or a transfer from the warehouse to the phone bank, making them unable to perform their jobs. Discrimination against pregnant women is finally beginning to get the national attention it deserves. Last week, I and others urged the...
Joan C. Williams's picture

Taxes, breastfeeding supplies & confusion

February 14, 2012
Breast pumps are tax deductible but what about storage bags? The bottles? That nursing pillow? With just two months left before April 15th, millions of Americans like me are waking up to the reality that we've got to gather those piles of receipts and hunker down with that dreaded tax return. Last year at about this time, breastfeeding mothers like me rejoiced when the IRS reversed a previous decision and declared that breastfeeding supplies would be tax deductible. The decision came after 25,000 people signed MomsRising's petition to the IRS and 43 members of Congress appealed to the IRS to...
Ashley Boyd's picture