Category Archives: Working Women

Addressing Gender Issues Among Staff in Community Corrections

Source: Kelli D. Stevens, Corrections Today, Vol. 72 no. 5, October 2010

Gender-responsiveness research in the criminal justice field has increased during the past decade as professionals learn more about differences between male and female offenders: their unique pathways to crime, their varying needs and gender-specific strategies to reduce crime. Gender responsiveness is also relevant to female professionals in community corrections because organizations need to recognize and address the needs of women in the workplace. While community corrections organizations are actively addressing the needs of female offenders, they are still struggling to meet the needs of female professionals working in the field.

Symposium – Redefining Work: Implications Of The Four-Day Work Week

Source: Connecticut Law Review, Volume 42 Number 4, May 2010

From the Editor:
On October 30, 2009, Connecticut Law Review hosted a Symposium, Redefining Work: Implications of the Four-Day Work Week. Scholars from across the United States, Canada, and England gathered to explore the benefits of and challenges posed by a four-day work week. The Symposium proved to be both timely and thought-provoking, especially in light of the United States’ recent economic downturn and soaring unemployment rate. This Issue collects the papers presented by twelve of the participants at the Symposium.

Articles include:
– Four-Day Work Weeks: Current Research And Practice
By: Rex L. Facer Ii & Lori L. Wadsworth

– How And Why Flexible Work Weeks Came About
By: Riva Poor

– The Four-Day Work Week: Old Lessons, New Questions
By: Robert C. Bird

– Incenting Flexibility: The Relationship Between Public Law And Voluntary Action In Enhancing Work/Life Balance
By: Rachel Arnow-Richman

– The Four-Day Work Week: But What About Ms. Coke, Ms. Upton, And Ms. Blankenship?
By: Shirley Lung

– Unpaid Furloughs And Four-Day Work Weeks: Employer Sympathy Or A Call For Collective Employee Action?
By: Michael Z. Green

– A Purpose For Every Time? The Timing And Length Of The Work Week And The Implications For Worker Well-Being
By: Lonnie Golden

– Feminism And Workplace Flexibility
By: Vicki Schultz

– What A Difference A Day Makes, Or Does It? Work/Family Balance And The Four-Day Work Week
By: Michelle A. Travis

– Sprawl, Family Rhythms, And The Four-Day Work Week
By: Katharine B. Silbaugh

– Dilemmas Of Value In Post-Industrial Economies: Retrieving Clock Time Through The Four-Day Work Week?
By: Emily Grabham

– Female Infertility In The Workplace: Understanding The Scope Of The Pregnancy Discrimination Act
By: Jeanne Hayes

Gender, Labor and Progressive Coalitions Working the Vote: Grass Roots Mobilizations for Registration & Early Voting in the 2008 Election

Source: Laura R. Woliver, Annie Boiter-Jolley, University of South Carolina, August 31, 2010

From the abstract:
Women’s movement organizations were central to the increased voter turnout in the 2008 United States elections. Based on fieldwork in Washington, D.C., we analyze the GOTV (Get Out the Vote) strategies of gendered interests in the 2008 election. Our work adds to the literature on social movements and political action, the strengths and weaknesses of coalitions, the official, overt and formal as well as from within efforts to incorporate gendered interests and agendas into political parties and institutions.

Separate and Not Equal? Gender Segregation in the Labor Market and the Gender Wage Gap

Source: Ariane Hegewisch, Hannah Liepmann, Jeffrey Hayes, and Heidi Hartmann, Institute for Women’s Policy Research, Briefing Paper, IWPR C377, September 2010

Occupational gender segregation is a strong feature of the US labor market. While some occupations have become increasingly integrated over time, others remain highly dominated by either men or women. Our analysis of trends in overall gender segregation shows that, after a considerable move towards more integrated occupations in the 1970s and 1980s, progress has completely stalled since the mid 1990s. Occupational segregation is a concern to policy makers for two reasons: it is inefficient economically, preventing able people from moving into occupations where they could perform well and that would satisfy them more than the ones open to them. And occupational segregation is a major cause for the persistent wage gap. Our analysis confirms that average earnings tend to be lower the higher the percentage of female workers in an occupation, and that this relation- ship is strongest for the most highly skilled occupations, such as medicine or law. Yet this is also a strong feature of jobs requiring little formal education and experience, increasing the likelihood of very low earnings for women working in female-dominated, low-skilled occupations such as childcare.

Poverty Among Women and Families, 2000-2009: Great Recession Brings Highest Rate in 15 Years

Source: National Women’s Law Center, September 2010

From the summary:
The latest Census Bureau data show a significant and alarming increase in poverty and extreme poverty among women, men and children in the United States in 2009. Poverty among women rose to 13.9 percent, up from 13.0 percent in 2008 — the highest rate in 15 years and the largest single-year increase since 1980. More than 16.4 million women were living in poverty in 2009, the largest number since the Census began collecting this data in 1966. Poverty among children also reached a 15-year high, rising from 19.0 percent in 2008 to 20.7 percent in 2009. These increases mirror the rise in the overall poverty rate from 13.2 percent to 14.3 percent in 2009, also the largest single-year increase since 1980.

The Gender Wage Gap: 2009

Source: Institute for Women’s Policy Research, Fact Sheet, IWPR #C350 Updated September 2010

The ratio of women’s and men’s median annual earnings, was 77.0 for full-time, year-round workers in 2009, essentially unchanged from 77.1 in 2008. (This means the gender wage gap for full-time year-round workers is now 22.9 percent.) This is below the peak of 77.8 percent in 2007.

An alternative measure of the wage gap, the ratio of women’s to men’s median weekly earnings for full-time workers – was 80.2 in 2009, which is essentially flat since the historical high of 81.0 in 2005.

Women and the Economy 2010: 25 Years of Progress But Challenges Remain

Source: U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee, August 2010

Twenty-five years ago, America was recovering from the double-dip recession of the 1980s, and women’s role in the labor force was beginning a multi-decade-long period of expansion. Today, as our nation’s economy continues down the road to recovery from the Great Recession, women are poised to be the engine of future economic growth. Women comprise half of all U.S. workers, and well over half of all American women are in the labor force. Women’s educational attainment outstrips that of men, and women’s share of union membership is growing rapidly. Families are increasingly dependent on working wives’ incomes in order to make ends meet.

Despite a quarter-century of progress, however, challenges remain. While the pay gap has narrowed over the last 25 years, the average full-time working woman earns only 80 cents for every dollar earned by the average full-time working man. Certain industries remain heavily gender-segregated. In addition, millions of women are struggling to juggle work outside the home with family care-giving responsibilities.

This report, which includes annual data from 1984 through 2009, provides a comprehensive overview of women’s economic progress over the last twenty-five years and highlights the additional work left to be done. The role of women in the American economy is of indisputable importance. The future of the American economy depends on women’s work, both inside and outside the home.

Asian Pacific American Women Workers and Unions

Source: Center for Economic and Policy Research, 2010

From the Berger-Marks summary:
Study shows advantage for Asian Pacific American women

Being a member of a union adds about $2 an hour to an Asian Pacific American woman’s paycheck, compared with her nonunion counterpart. That’s the big news from a new report by the Center for Economic and Policy Research.

It jibes with another CEPR study, “Unions and Upward Mobility for Immigrant Workers,” that found a big union advantage in pay and benefits for all immigrant workers.

One of every eight Asian Pacific American women–12.8 percent– is a union member or is represented by a union at her workplace. More than two out of three are immigrants and about half (46.6 percent) work in the public sector.

Realizing Health Reform’s Potential: Women and the Affordable Care Act of 2010

Source: Sara R. Collins, Sheila D. Rustgi, and Michelle M. Doty, Commonwealth Fund, Volume 93, July 30, 2010

From the summary:
This issue brief analyzes how, over the next decade, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is likely to stabilize and reverse women’s growing exposure to health care costs. Up to 15 million women who now are uninsured could gain subsidized coverage under the law. In addition, 14.5 million insured women will benefit from provisions that improve coverage or reduce premiums. Women who have coverage through the individual insurance market and are charged higher premiums than men, who have been unable to secure coverage for the cost of pregnancy, or who have a preexisting health condition excluded from their benefits will ultimately find themselves on a level playing field with men, enjoying a full range of comprehensive benefits.

Representation of Women Faculty at Public Research Universities: Do Unions Matter?

Source: Ann Mari May, Elizabeth A. Moorhouse, and Jennifer A. Petersen, Industrial & Labor Relations Review, Vol. 63, No. 4, July 2010
(subscription required)

From the abstract:
The authors investigate the impact of unionization on the representation of women faculty at public Carnegie Doctoral/Research-Extensive institutions in the United States from 1993-94 through 2004-05. Using institutional-level data from the American Association of University Professors and controlling for institutional characteristics that influence the gender composition of faculty, the authors find that significant differences exist in the proportion of women faculty in total and by rank in unionized versus non-unionized settings. Specifically, unionized public research universities have a higher proportion of women faculty overall and more women at the ranks of associate and full professor than do non-unionized schools. The authors suggest that this issue is better understood using a segmented labor market approach since previous studies conducted on the subject may have obscured differences by rank. This study reflects the historical priorities of the faculty union in formalizing tenure and promotion procedures, especially important for women faculty.