(Washington, D.C.) The economy has lost 666,000 public sector jobs during the recovery, according to new analysis by the National Women’s Law Center (NWLC) of data released this morning by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
“June saw strong job growth and declining unemployment, especially for women. But six years into the recovery, we’re not out of the woods yet—unemployment rates are still higher than they were before the recession began for almost all groups of women and men, labor force participation is the lowest it has been in a generation, and the country has lost more than half a million public sector jobs since June 2009,” said Joan Entmacher, NWLC Vice President for Family Economic Security. “When Congress returns, it must reject spending bills that would cut funding for public services, eliminate jobs, and slow economic growth.”
(Washington, DC) Today, the Department of Labor (DOL) released a proposed rule that would extend time and a half overtime pay to millions of workers by updating the current overtime regulations. Under the current rule, overtime protections do not apply to workers in managerial or professional jobs with salaries above $455 per week or $23,660 annually—less than the poverty threshold for a family of four. The salary threshold for the overtime exemption has been increased only once since 1975 and is not tied to inflation. The proposed regulation would raise the threshold to about $50,400 in 2016—a little less than the 1975 level adjusted for inflation.
(Washington, DC) Today, the Supreme Court made history by declaring same-sex marriage bans to be unconstitutional. With a 5-4 ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges and consolidated cases, marriage equality is now the law of the land: Same-sex couples can be married and have their marriages recognized in every state. This decision, which ensures that men and women will no longer be barred from marriage based on damaging gender stereotypes, is a victory for all Americans.
(Washington, D.C.) In a major victory for women and families, the Supreme Court today handed down a decision that preserves the financial support that millions of people need to afford health insurance through the Affordable Care Act (ACA). In a 6 – 3 decision, the Court ruled in King v. Burwell that the law allows the federal government to provide tax credits to offset the cost of insurance purchased from the federally-facilitated health insurance Marketplaces—a core aspect of the ACA. The ruling affects nearly seven million women who are eligible for tax credits, including about 3.5 million women who currently receive them.
(Washington, DC) The Senate today defeated the Military Justice Improvement Act (MJIA), an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act for FY 2014, which would reform the military justice system by assigning the authority to prosecute serious crimes—including sexual assault—to experienced military prosecutors. This legislation is sponsored by Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) and a bipartisan coalition.
(Washington, D.C.) Women accounted for two-thirds of the 280,000 jobs added in May—but more than 40 percent of all jobs gained were in low-wage sectors, according to new analysis by the National Women’s Law Center (NWLC) of data released this morning by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
“There’s good news in today’s jobs report: the economy added 280,000 jobs in May and women gained two-thirds of them. Average wages increased. But 43 percent of the jobs added were in low-wage sectors that don’t pay enough to support a family. It’s time for lawmakers in Congress and around the country to support the growing movement to raise the minimum wage,” said Joan Entmacher, NWLC Vice President for Family Economic Security.
(Washington, D.C.) Today, Senators Robert Casey (D-PA), Kelly Ayotte (R-NH), Dean Heller (R-NV) and Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Congressman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) will re-introduce the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (PWFA). This marks the first time that the PWFA will have bipartisan co-sponsorship. This legislation would require employers to make reasonable accommodations for those pregnant employees who need them — just like the law already clearly requires for employees with disabilities.
(Washington, DC) A report released today by the National Women’s Law Center (NWLC) exposes at least 20 insurance companies that are violating the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) breastfeeding benefits and identified troubling trends in insurance company compliance that are likely to be systemic nationwide. NWLC found violations that include limiting coverage of breast pump purchases and failing to have lactation counselors in network.
(Washington, D.C.) The Obama Administration today clarified that insurance companies must cover all FDA-approved birth control methods without a co-pay or deductible, as required by the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The communication, in the form of FAQs issued jointly by the Departments of Health and Human Services, Labor, and Treasury, lists all the unique birth control methods that insurance companies must cover at no cost to the woman and underscores that all medical services associated with the methods also must be covered with no co-pays.