The Hypocrisy of a Post-Roe Mother’s Day

This Mother’s Day—like the countless that have come before it—conservative politicians who fancy themselves members of the party that upholds “family values” will send out social media posts praising the moms among us. They’ll wax poetic about the “decision” to become a mother and how it’s the “most selfless, most important job in the world.” Some may even go so far as to task their speech writers with crafting some moving message about how vital mothers are; how we’re raising the next generation of prolific thinkers and world leaders; how we should be revered “not just today, but every day.” 

And in the post-Roe world they created with their anti-abortion policies that have forced people into motherhood, attacked IVF and fertility treatments, and left doctors terrified to treat pregnant patients to the point that women are slipping into comas, miscarrying in hospital lobby bathrooms and enduring unnecessary C-sections instead of receiving common abortion care, it will all be one big, giant pile of bullshit.

Which Political Party Is Budgeting for Women’s Futures?

For too many—especially women of color—paychecks aren’t keeping up. Inflation is inching downward, but costs for groceries, childcare and rent feel out of reach.

But congressional fights over taxes and spending are really about fundamental questions: What do women, our families and communities need? What kind of future do we want to build? Recent budget proposals by the Biden administration and Republicans in Congress show how our two major political parties answer those questions. The answers were starkly different, revealing high stakes when it comes to women’s ability to participate in the economy, care for their families and control their own reproductive lives. 

The Best and Worst States for Family Care Policies

In 2021, the Century Foundation published its first care policy report card, “Care Matters,” which graded each state on a number of supportive family policies and worker rights and protections, such as paid sick and paid family leave, pregnant worker fairness, and the domestic worker bill of rights. The 2021 report card revealed the tremendous gaps in state care policies and a fragmented and insufficient system of care workers and families in most states.

This year’s update, co-authored with Caring Across Generations, takes another look at how states are doing.

We Still Have A Caregiving Crisis. Let’s Solve It

Around 43.5 million caregivers provide unpaid care to an adult or child each year, and 61 percent of them are women. Work isn’t working for most people—and when work doesn’t work, families become financially unstable and women leave the workforce.

I implore Congress to focus on this issue in 2024, to make it a reality for workers across the country. Millions are waiting. 

Under the Threat of Another Government Shutdown

The government might shut down this week (again). At the same time, House Republicans are trying to abolish the Women’s Bureau; cut the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission; slash maternal and child health support from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA); eliminate funding for Title X family planning; *and* reverse the FDA decision on the abortion pill mifepristone.

‘Who Cares?’: The Unequal Burden of Care Work on Women

The U.S. needs a future of care fit for 21st-century feminism. This excerpt from Emily Kenway’s newest book: Who Cares?, is a look into the lives of women who have been relegated to the home in order to provide care to others and the experiences of women of color and working class women, who need the freedom to care in the first place.

“We shared the sadness of watching a loved one in anguish, but our caregiving experience was completely different. … We need to witness both care worlds to create solutions that work for all women, not just some.”

A Prison Guard Was Forced to Stay at Her Post During Labor Pains. Texas Is Fighting Compensation for Her Stillbirth.

The pregnant officer reported contraction-like pains at work, but said she wasn’t allowed to leave for hours. Her baby was delivered stillborn. If Issa had gotten to the hospital sooner, medical personnel told her, the baby would have survived, according to a federal lawsuit filed against the Texas Department of Criminal Justice and prison officials.

But the prison agency and the Texas attorney general’s office, which has staked its reputation on “defending the unborn” all the way up to the U.S. Supreme Court, are arguing the agency shouldn’t be held responsible for the stillbirth because staff didn’t break the law. Plus, they said, it’s not clear that Issa’s fetus had rights as a person.

SCOTUS Was About to Overturn Roe. Kirsten Gillibrand Still Gave Me Paid Leave.

A firsthand account of the life-saving benefits of paid leave, and its vitality in our post-Roe society:

“You cannot push yourself through a grade-three concussion … but despite my self-pitying, my coworkers were getting the job done without me. … The irony of being on paid leave while abortion rights were about to be decimated was not lost on me either. … No one should ever have to make that impossible choice between their health and their paycheck. We need to pass national paid family and medical leave.”

What Would It Look Like if the Workplace Was Built for Women?

The number of women leading Australia’s largest companies has risen from a dismal 5 percent in 2020 to 30 percent today. Even still, the country’s working women still face many challenges. There is a gender pay gap (13 percent), and a lack of support for childcare and other family support systems, including paid parental leave. These are the same challenges that women face in the U.S. despite study after study recognizing these barriers to gender equity in business.

Two steps forward for Australia is good news. But so many more steps forward are needed for equal representation and economic equity, and for families, communities, companies and countries everywhere to truly thrive.