Working for Women’s Economic Empowerment

America has made great strides in ensuring that women and girls have equal access to opportunity, but there is much left to do.  Women still only make 82 cents on the dollar compared to men, and that disparity is even greater for women of color.  The United States lags many of our peer nations when it comes to providing mandatory sick leave and paid maternity leave.  And a woman’s right to make her own reproductive choices is under new and dangerous attack.  Every legislator must be persuaded to fight for progress on these and other issues, but we can accelerate that progress by electing more women at all levels of government.

To begin to address these issues, Congressman Sarbanes voted for H.R. 7, the Paycheck Fairness Act, which would promote equal pay for equal work by providing more effective remedies to individuals who have faced wage discrimination on the basis of sex.  He has also supported several bills to expand workers’ access to paid leave programs, including H.R. 804, the Family and Medical Insurance Leave (FAMILY) Act, to create a paid sick leave program funded by payroll taxes; H.R. 2465, the Health Families Act, to allow workers in businesses with 15 or more employees to earn up to seven job-protected paid sick leave days per year; and H.R. 564, the Comprehensive Paid Leave for Federal Employees Act, to grant federal employees 12 weeks of paid family and medical leave each year.

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Congressman John Sarbanes has received 100% ratings on the scorecards of Federally Employed Women and The American Association of University Women Action Fund.