When It Comes to Family Policies, the Public Doesn’t Want to Pick and Choose

Sen Joe Manchin said he would not vote for a “reckless expansion of government programs,” and has reportedly demanded progressive Democrats “pick one” of Biden’s three family policies included in the bill: extending the child tax credit; childcare; or paid family and medical leave.

But most Americans don’t see investments in critical family policies as reckless—and they don’t want to choose between them.

Families Depend on Congress to Pass Paid Family and Medical Leave—Mine Included

Whether someone is navigating a child’s serious health needs, a cancer diagnosis, a parent’s stroke, the birth of a new child, or so many other personal events that shape our lives, all U.S. workers—not just those like me who happen to live in one of the nine states or D.C. that has passed a paid leave law—deserve to be there for their loved ones when we are needed most. 

Sens. Manchin and Sinema Should Consider the Cost of Failing to Invest in Care Infrastructure

Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W.V.) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) were elected to represent their constituents. But they are ignoring the cries of working families and caregivers, mothers of color in particular, by sitting on a much-needed $3.5 trillion investment that could address the decades-long fiscal neglect of low- and moderate-income families and communities. 

Stimulus Payments and the Child Tax Credit Are Transforming U.S. Families—What Happens When They End?

Neither the COVID-era stimulus payments nor the child tax credit were designed to be permanent solutions—but if they were, they would especially help working moms, low-income women and women of color.

The Magnolia Mother’s Trust puts this into action, demonstrating that giving women an economic safety net leads to families escaping poverty and having the ability to set themselves and their families up for success.

Think Build Back Better Is Expensive? Wait Till You Hear the U.S. Defense Budget.

The main objection to President Biden’s Build Back Better plan by Republicans and so-called “moderate” Democrats is the price tag—$3.5 trillion over 10 years. If that sounds like a lot of money, it is—until you compare it to the boys and their toys.

We don’t need a rocket scientist to tell us why women’s jobs aren’t recovering: a lack of childcare and universal pre-kindergarten, a lack of paid family leave. The Build Back Better Act would go a long way toward fixing that.

We Need More Women in Leadership at the Fed: Personnel Is Policy

Senior officials at the Federal Reserve—all white men—were recently caught in an insider trading scandal, epitomizing what happens when government officials prioritize their own interests over what’s best for the public good.

The president now has a historic opportunity to remake the all-white Federal Reserve Board in the image of the coalition that won him the White House and to promote the racial and gender justice necessary for a fully realized Build Back Better agenda. Let’s put powerful women in power and reshape the Fed into an institutional force for race, gender and economic progress.

September Saw One of the Biggest Drops in Women’s Jobs Since Pandemic Began

September saw one of the largest dropoffs of women from the labor force since the pandemic began. The last time women left the workforce in such large numbers was in September 2020—and that’s not a coincidence. 

The start of school during the pandemic has now coincided twice with significant job losses for women, underscoring that sectors disproportionately employing women continue to be hard hit and childcare centers are struggling.

Keeping Score: California Schools to Provide Free Period Products; Title X Gag Rule Reversed; Texas Abortion Ban Reinstated

In every issue of Ms., we track research on our progress in the fight for equality, catalogue can’t-miss quotes from feminist voices and keep tabs on the feminist movement’s many milestones. We’re Keeping Score online, too—in in this biweekly round-up.

This week: Biden administration reverses Title X gag rule; federal courts halt, then reinstate Texas’s six-week abortion ban; school districts crack down on BLM and pride flags; Playboy features first gay man on its cover; California overrides workplace NDAs *and* requires free menstrual products in schools; and more.