NEW REPORT: When Women Succeed, America Succeeds: Investing in Women’s Return to the Workforce
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today the House Budget Committee released a report highlighting expert testimony and findings from a recent hearing titled, “Ensuring Women Can Thrive in a Post-Pandemic Economy.”
The report shows how women’s labor force participation rates — despite modest rebounds — are still well below historic highs, and how policies including paid family and medical leave, universal pre-K, and capping child cares costs will allow more women to return to the workforce, in turn strengthening our economy and our society.
“Our economy cannot afford to permanently lose 1.2 million workers, and women should not be forced to stay out of the workforce because we have failed to respond to very obvious unmet needs in our country,” said Chairman Yarmuth. “Congress must address these issues, or we will be left with a partial recovery, diminished productivity, and curbed economic growth for decades to come.”
“While there may be many factors that contributed to the United States falling behind [in women’s labor force participation], the economic research clearly points to family policies as the most important driver,” said Dr. Stefania Albanesi, Economics Professor at the University of Pittsburg. “Three policies in particular stand out: entitlements to paid parental leave, entitlements to flexible work schedules, and publicly provided child care.”
The report also highlights how the pandemic affected America’s majority-female caregiving workforce, and the tremendous economic payoff of investing in the care economy. “If we invest in care jobs becoming living wage jobs with real economic security and access to a safety net, we will create a pathway to the middle class for literally millions of working class and working poor women and their families,” said Ms. Ai-jen Poo, Executive Director of the National Domestic Workers’ Alliance. “It’s a win-win-win investment.”
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