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Lauren Frohlich, Fellow

Lauren Frohlich is a Public Policy Fellow with the Family Economic Security and Education and Employment teams. Prior to joining the Center she analyzed and advocated for better workforce development, education, and social welfare policies. While working at American Institutes for Research, she co-authored annual reports for the National Center for Education Statistics. Lauren studied Sociology at Yale University and earned her Master's degree from the University of Michigan's Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy. 

My Take

Underpaid, Overloaded, and Overrepresented: Findings from NWLC's New Report on Women in Low-Wage Jobs

Posted by | Posted on: July 30, 2014 at 01:15 pm

There are 20 million low-wage workers in the United States — and two-thirds of them are women. 

Unless women have a bachelor's degree, they are overrepresented in low-wage jobs. 

Even in low-wage jobs, women working full time, year round make just 87 cents for every dollar their male counterparts earn. 

These are some of the findings in National Women’s Law Center’s new report Underpaid & Overloaded: Women in Low-Wage Jobs, which analyzes the low-wage workforce (people working in jobs that pay $10.10 per hour or less). The report is full of new data, which you can also explore in our new interactive graphic and map. It also has solutions for how we can lighten the load for low-wage workers.


Women Gain 158,000 Jobs in June and Unemployment Rate Drops, But…

Posted by Lauren Frohlich, Fellow | Posted on: July 03, 2014 at 01:43 pm

Overall, the story that came out of today’s jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics is a positive one. The economy added 288,000 jobs in June and 158,000 of those jobs (54.9 percent) went to women.


Five Facts about Working Mothers for Mother's Equal Pay Day

Posted by | Posted on: June 06, 2014 at 03:29 pm

Hallmark doesn’t make a card to give mothers on June 12th – but they should. June 12th is Mother’s Equal Pay Day—the day that marks how far mothers have to work into this year (in addition to working all of last year) to earn as much as fathers did last year alone.


Women’s Employment Update: Women gain 166,000 jobs in April, but a disproportionate share of jobs are in low-wage sectors

Posted by Lauren Frohlich, Fellow | Posted on: May 02, 2014 at 03:01 pm

Most of the early headlines reporting on today’s jobs numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics celebrated the “surge” in payrolls and the “plummeting” of the unemployment rate. The report does give us some reasons to be optimistic—the economy added 288,000 jobs in April and the overall unemployment rate declined by 0.4 percentage points to 6.3 percent—but a deeper dive into the data shows a more complex picture.

April job gains were disproportionately low-wage for women:

  • Women gained 166,000 of the 288,000 jobs added in April, while men gained 122,000 jobs.
  • Women’s gains – but not men’s – were disproportionately in low-wage sectors (specifically, retail and leisure & hospitality).  These industries accounted for more than three in every ten jobs women gained (31 percent) but only one in every ten jobs that men gained (10 percent).
  • Women accounted for 81 percent of the 63,000 jobs added in the retail and leisure & hospitality sectors.

The Collateral Damage of Scheduling Challenges in Low-Wage Jobs

When policymakers discuss solutions to help nearly 20 million low-wage workers make ends meet, the focus is often on raising wages. Raising the minimum wage and tipped minimum wage would go a long way to help these workers, but policymakers should also be concerned about curbing abusive scheduling practices that create incredible uncertainty for workers and their families about whether they will be given enough hours on the schedule to make ends meet and the timing of those hours.  

Women are disproportionately affected by challenging work schedules because women hold the majority of low-wage jobs and often have significant caregiving responsibilities outside of work, but men in low-wage jobs also suffer as a result of often difficult, and sometimes abusive work scheduling practices. A new issue brief recently released by NWLC describes five of the most common scheduling challenges faced by workers in low-wage jobs and the collateral damage they impose on workers and their families. Here are some highlights: