We are not going back to the days when women did not have the right to control their own bodies and economic futures. Despite major advances in civil and political rights, our country still has a long way to go in addressing the issue of gender inequality. Many of the achievements that have been made for women’s rights in the 20th century have been under attack by the Republican party — denying women control over their own bodies, preventing access to vital medical and social services, and blocking equal pay for equal work. I will fight everyday to ensure women’s rights are advanced, not regressed by pushing for the following:
Fight for pay equity for women by cosponsoring Paycheck Fairness Act.
Expand and protect the reproductive rights of women. Expand funding for Planned Parenthood, the Title X family planning program, and other initiatives that protect women’s health, access to contraception, and the availability of a safe and legal abortion.
Make quality childcare and pre-k available to all Americans by enacting a new Child Development Act. It is unacceptable that the cost of a quality childcare program is out of reach for millions of Americans.
Increase the minimum wage and tie it to inflation, starting at $15 an hour. Increasing the minimum wage would significantly boost the wages of more than 15 million women and help close the gender wage gap.
Raise the tipped minimum wage to $15 an hour. The federal tipped minimum wage of just $2.13 an hour hasn’t been raised since 1991. More than two-thirds of tipped workers are women. Increasing the tipped minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2023 would lift millions of women out of poverty and significantly reduce the gender pay gap.
Provide at least 12 weeks of paid family leave, 2 weeks of family vacation, and one week of paid sick days to American workers.
Expand the WIC program for pregnant women, mothers and infants so that every low-income mother and her children receive the nutrition they need to live healthy lives.
Make healthcare a right. Today, women have much higher healthcare expenses than men and pay a greater portion of their healthcare costs out of their own pockets. Women make up two-thirds of the low-wage workforce and only about 23 percent of low-wage jobs provide health insurance. It is time for a Medicare for All single-payer healthcare system.
Expand social security. Fight to expand Social Security benefits by an average of $65 a month; increase cost-of-living-adjustments to keep up with rising medical and prescription drug costs; and expand the minimum Social Security benefit to lift seniors out of poverty. Women will benefit the most by expanding Social Security. More than twice as many elderly women lived in poverty than men in 2013. Without Social Security, nearly half of all elderly women would be living in poverty.