Safety Nets

Women in the United States frequently lack basic services that are taken for granted in many other parts of the world. To be able to live in economic security, they require educational opportunities; paid sick leave; affordable, quality child care and elder care; as well as portable health care and adequate retirement benefits to protect them throughout their lives. While programs such as Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and Food Stamps are available, they do not go far enough. More robust safety nets are needed to lift and keep women and their families out of poverty.

State Child Care Assistance Policies 2011: Reduced Support for Families in Challenging Times

The National Women's Law Center's 8th annual review of key child care subsidy policies in all fifty states and the District of Columbia reveals that families were worse off in 37 states than they were in 2010 under one or more child care assistance policies.  Families are not only worse off in 2011 than they were in 2010, but are also worse off than a decade ago. Families in only eleven states were better off under one or more child care policy areas than last year, a sharp contrast to NWLC’s findings in the previous year when families in thirty-four states were better off in 2010 than they were in 2009 and worse off in only fifteen states.
URL: 
http://www.nwlc.org/resource/state-child-care-assistance-policies-2011-reduced-support-families-challenging-times
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Plan for a New Future: The Impact of Social Security Reform on People of Color

The Social Security Act was passed in 1935 to solve a pressing problem: how to alleviate poverty among those who contributed a lifetime of labor to the U.S. economy but who, through no fault of their own, could no longer work. The program’s early years focused on providing assistance to the elderly and their spouses. Later, eligibility was extended to dependents of deceased workers and to people who could no longer work due to long-term disability. Since its beginnings, Social Security has proven to be one of the most enduring and effective means of protecting vulnerable people from poverty while giving them dignity and a measure of economic security.

URL: 
http://www.globalpolicysolutions.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=129

Women and Men Living on the Edge: Economic Insecurity After the Great Recession

The IWPR/Rockefeller Survey of Economic Security, like several other recent surveys, finds that the effects of the 2007–2009 recession, known as the Great Recession, are both broad and deep. The IWPR/Rockefeller survey shows that more than one and a half years after the recession came to an official end, and the recovery supposedly began, many women and men report that they are still suffering significant hardships. They are having difficulty paying for basics like food (26 million women and 15 million men), health care (46 million women and 34 million men), rent or mortgage (32 million women and 25 million men), transportation (37 million women and 28 million men), utility bills (41 million women and 27 million men), and they have difficulty saving for the future (65 million women and 53 million men). On almost every measure of insecurity and hardship the survey reveals the Great Recession has visited more hardship on women than it has on men.

URL: 
http://www.iwpr.org/publications/pubs/women-and-men-living-on-the-edge-economic-insecurity-after-the-great-recession

Retirement on the Edge: Women, Men, and Economic Insecurity After the Great Recession

The Great Recession dramatically altered the lives of many Americans, creating pronounced economic stress and uncertainty for both individuals and families. Even after the recession was officially declared over, unemployment levels remained persistently high, while housing values remained notably low. These circumstances led the Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR) to develop and analyze the IWPR/Rockefeller Survey of Economic Security, which was administered to 2,746 adults aged 18 and older between September and November 2010. The sample for the survey was stratified to yield approximately equal numbers of white, black, and Hispanic respondents, with results weighted by American Community Survey data to reflect the non-institutional, adult population of the nation.
URL: 
http://www.iwpr.org/publications/pubs/retirement-on-the-edge-women-men-and-economic-insecurity-after-the-great-recession/
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