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Saving the Safety Net: Congressional Action Urgently Needed to Preserve Unemployment Insurance

Posted by Amy Quinn, Senior Policy Analyst | Posted on: December 08, 2009 at 02:39 pm

by Amy Quinn, Senior Policy Analyst,
National Women's Law Center

Families suffer when unemployment is high, and the nation currently faces the worst job climate in a quarter century. The unemployment benefits of the Recovery Act alleviated some of that suffering – and yet, this safety net will be cut at the end of the month if Congress fails to act now. Without reauthorization of the Recovery Act, one million workers are expected to lose their unemployment benefits in January, according to a report released yesterday by the National Employment Law Project, and a total of 3.2 million are expected to lose benefits by March. Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics show long-term unemployment at its highest level since records have been kept – four in ten jobless workers have been unemployed for more than six months – making unemployment benefits all the more critical. 

Nancy Duff Campbell, co-president of the National Women's Law Center, highlighted the importance of unemployment insurance to single mothers and their families at a press conference hosted yesterday by NELP, the Center for American Progress, and the Half in Ten Campaign. “Many families headed by single mothers already scrape by just to make ends meet – even in good times,” said Campbell. “When single mothers lose their jobs, they have little to fall back on: no second earner, few if any assets, nowhere to turn.”  Unemployment insurance benefits are critical to these women and their families, noted Campbell, keeping a roof over their heads, food on the table, and clothes on their children.

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NWLC Denounces Nelson-Hatch Amendment to Senate Health Care Reform Bill

Posted by | Posted on: December 07, 2009 at 09:54 pm

Today, Senators Ben Nelson (D-Neb) and Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) filed an amendment to the Senate health care reform bill that would result in a de facto ban on coverage of abortion in the new health insurance exchanges.

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NWLC Welcomes Defense Task Force Report on Sexual Assault in the Military

Posted by | Posted on: December 07, 2009 at 03:26 pm

The congressionally mandated Department of Defense Task Force on Sexual Assault in the Military Services has issued a report containing 30 recommendations aimed at improving the strategic direction and oversight of the department’s Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Program, prevention and training strategies, response to victims, and accountability. 

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Women Are People Too ... Right?

Posted by Judy Waxman, Vice President for Health and Reproductive Rights | Posted on: December 07, 2009 at 02:32 pm

by Judy Waxman, Vice President for Health and Reproductive Rights,
National Women's Law Center

Since the beginning of the health care reform debate, it seems every Member of Congress has adopted the mantra, “People shouldn’t lose coverage under health care reform.”

Well, I agree. And last I checked, women are people.

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NWLC Applauds Passage of Mikulski Women's Health Amendment in the Senate

Posted by | Posted on: December 03, 2009 at 07:24 pm

Today, the Senate voted 61 to 39 to pass an amendment to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and helps to ensure that women get the preventative care they need.

Offered by Senator Mikulski (D-MD), the amendment requires all health plans to cover comprehensive women’s preventative care and screenings, at no additional cost to women, based on a set of guidelines to be developed by women’s health experts within the federal government.  This is an essential protection that fills in c

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Ladies first – Women’s Health Amendment Vote Coming Soon

Posted by Judy Waxman, Vice President for Health and Reproductive Rights | Posted on: December 01, 2009 at 03:38 pm

by Judy Waxman, Vice President for Health and Reproductive Rights,

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What ESPN Left on the Cutting Room Floor

by Lara S. Kaufmann, Senior Counsel, 
National Women’s Law Center 

If you watched ESPN’s “Outside the Lines” yesterday, you know it included a segment on a client of ours, a 17-year old high school senior in Fort Worth, Texas. In case you missed it, here it is:

Watch the Video

Our client is a top student, and she was the starting setter on the school’s varsity volleyball team until the athletic coordinator found out that she was pregnant. She was then denied an equal opportunity to play based on her pregnancy, in violation of Title IX’s prohibition against sex discrimination in education. Just last week, the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights in Dallas opened an investigation into the matter.

The show was engaging, and I applaud ESPN for devoting media attention to the issue of discrimination against pregnant students, as it is still quite common but most often flies below the public’s radar. Too many people – students, parents, and school staff – still do not know that Title IX applies to schools’ treatment of pregnant and parenting students. (For more information on what Title IX requires in this regard, check out our resources on pregnant and parenting students).

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