07 June 2011

Weekly Round-Up: Grantees Making Waves Nationwide

Last week, in a word, was HUGE -- for our grantees and the progressive movement writ large. Take a look below for highlights of some truly historic wins for women, workers, immigrants -- for all of us nationwide. Once again, the tenacity, courage and success of our grantee partners leaves us in awe.

Grantee win alert! Congratulations to Mujeres Unidas y Activas, the California Domestic Workers Coalition and the National Domestic Workers Alliance! Thanks to their advocacy, the CA Assembly just passed the CA Domestic Workers Bill of Rights today, 41-19. Bring on the Senate!

Grantee win alert! Family Values @ Work and their state coalition member, Connecticut Working Families, won a significant victory last week when Connecticut became the first state in the nation to pass paid sick leave legislation. Congratulations! This is truly a collective win for all of our grantees advocating for paid sick leave at federal, state and local levels across the US.

Grantee win alert! Last week Vermont passed legislation that will move the state towards a universal single-payer health insurance system -- to be phased in alongside national health-care reform. The Vermont Workers' Center, affiliated with the national organization Jobs With Justice, played a vital role in this win, advocating for health care as a human right and building a robust political coalition in support of change.

For more than a year, Families for Freedom, a New York State member organization of our grantee, the National Network for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, has been advocating for the state’s withdrawal from Secure Communities, a program rife with problems that allows immigration officials to access fingerprint databases and identify individuals for deportation. Last week, their fight finally paid off when New York became the second state in the nation to suspend its participation. Let's hope it's contagious! Already, Massachusetts has followed suit.

The National Day labor Organizing Network released their own statement about the New York State news. “It is clear the tide turning on SCOMM, and it’s high time for the President to terminate the program before any further damage is done to our communities.”

Christina Rodriguez, Co-Founder of SMART Youth, spoke at the press conference announcing the launch of the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) report, AIDS at 30: Nations at the Crossroads.” Just 20 years old (we're so impressed!), she shared her youth perspective and emphasized the critical need for access to comprehensive sexuality education in the fight to end HIV/AIDS.

Women’s Voices for the Earth and the National Asian and Pacific American Women’s Forum held a successful Congressional briefing on salon worker health and safety. The purpose was to increase co-sponsorship of the federal Safe Cosmetics Act of 2011, which will likely be introduced this week. It was well attended and covered by several media outlets. Read coverage from the Wall Street Journal and learn more.

Service Women’s Action Network launched a new blog last week called About Face, which exists to provide a safe space for servicewomen, veterans, advocates and other concerned individuals to candidly promote the discussion of issues facing and influencing our community. Be sure to visit this important and unique platform for servicewomen and their allies nationwide!

Service Women's Action Network proudly endorses legislation proposed by Rep. Slaughter and Sen. Gillibrand that would expand the reproductive rights of military women. Read the full press release and stay tuned for the progress of the bill, "The MARCH for Military Women Act" (Military Access to Reproductive Care and Health), H.R. 2085! 

The Women of Color Policy Network released a brief, Workplace Flexibility and Women of Color [pdf], on the impact and importance of workplace flexibility arrangements for women of color, particularly Black and Latina workers, who are less likely to have flexible schedules, access to paid sick leave, and other work supports.

In the News
In "Spending Cuts and the 'Womencession'," a commentary in the Lexington Herald-Ledger, Attica Woodson Scott of Kentucky Jobs with Justice (and 2011 Woman of Vision awardee!) draws on findings from a recent national poll commissioned by the Ms. Foundation to bolster her case that many women and children in Kentucky are facing tremendous economic insecurity and injustice.

Wider Opportunities for Women’s Executive Director, Joan Kuriansky, published an opinion piece in the Washington Post in support of continued federal funding for job training programs, including the burgeoning green jobs field.

Upcoming Events
On June 8, organizers from Parent Voices in California and their allies in New Mexico (OLÉ Working Parents Association) and Washington, DC (Parent Ambassadors) will sit down with President Obama's top education policy adviser, Roberto Rodriguez, and offer a grassroots perspective on how to improve child care programs.

On June 9, in Washington, DC, the Institute for Women's Policy Research and the National Women's Law Center are holding a congressional briefing, Combating Pay Secrecy for Paycheck Fairness.

On June 15, in Denver, CO, Lorena Garcia and Kenia Morales of Colorado Organization for Latina Opportunity and Reproductive Rights (COLOR) will lead the training, Breaking Down Issue Silos: Strategies for Building Campaign Messages that Cater to Different Communities, as part of The White House Project's Go Lead program.

On June 23, in New York City, the Ms. Foundation is co-sponsoring an Emerging Leaders event organized by the National Council for Research of Women and the Girls Scouts of the USA.

No comments:

Post a Comment