Dear CEC Coalition Members, Conversation Leaders, and Friends
Welcome to the March issue of the Caring Economy Campaign (CEC) newsletter. We are celebrating Women’s History Month in many ways – including a Congressional briefing on Capitol Hill on March 20th (to which you are invited) and a talk by Riane Eisler at the U.S. State Department in Washington DC on March 21 (the theme is “What’s Good for Women is Good for the World: Foundations for a Caring Economy). And that’s not all, as you will see…
PUBLIC POLICY: SOCIAL WEALTH INDICATORS PROJECT
Congressional Briefing: “The Economic Return from Investing in Care Work & Early Childhood Education”
Root causes of such economic and social ills, as well as policy solutions, will be probed in this Congressional briefing, held in cooperation with Representative Eleanor Holmes-Norton, (D-DC). Representatives of Congressional offices, the news media, and research and advocacy groups are invited. Please RSVP by March 15th at [email protected]. Space is limited. Lunch will be provided.
For more information please contact: Kimberly Otis, Director of the Caring Economy Campaign at [email protected].
CPS/Urban Institute report: National Indicators and Social Wealth
This groundbreaking report from CPS and the Urban Institute stems from a two-day meeting in Washington, D.C., that brought together experts on national indicators from the U.S. Department of Commerce, other government agencies, think tanks, and leading universities.National Indicators and Social Wealthrecommends “a coordinated effort that can change the way we think about and measure our economy, providing more realistic tools to navigate a very different social, political and economic reality than existed at the birth of the GDP.”
These efforts are essential, since GDP inadequately assesses the value of caring for people, especially children, members of communities of color, and the elderly, and thus the enormous economic contributions of women and especially women of color who do most of this care work, perpetuating cycles of poverty and impeding U.S. economic competitiveness.
LEADERSHIP AND LEARNING PROGRAMS
Caring Economy Leadership Program Now in our third year, the Caring Economy Leadership Program has trained over one hundred Caring Economy Conversation Leaders from across the U.S. and seventeen other countries to take the caring economy message into their local, national, and global communities for a large multiplier effect. The final two leadership cohort groups of our Spring 2013 series launch on April 9 and May 11 and there are a few spaces left – so do join as soon as you can! Learn More about the Caring Economy Leadership Program.
Caring Economy Starter Course Recent participants in our free monthly Starter Course webinar have commented: “It was wonderful… Very clear… Very inspiring … Thank you so much!” You are invited to join us for the next Starter Course on April 3, 3013.
Cultural Transformation Master Course with Riane Eisler The pilot class of the new Master Course — an intensive, video-based exploration of Riane Eisler’s powerful body of work on how power, sex, and money are shaped by our underlying cultural values and how we can create a more equitable and sustainable world — launched in March, 2013 with students from 5 countries and 11 US states. It will next be offered in October, 2013.
COALITION & MOVEMENT-BUILDING
Over 80 organizations and leaders representing 14 million people have joined the CEC coalition. Allies include women’s, children’s, mothers’, socially responsible business, faith-based, think tanks, and environmental groups.
The CEC website at www.caringeconomy.org features a blog with contributions from CEC leaders such as Valerie Young, Steve Barnett, Shireen Mitchell, and Nancy Folbre. CEC’s social media strategies are now reaching thousands through Facebook, Twitter,You Tube, our blogs, and email blasts. Please join the conversation!
The CEC is also making the case for a caring economy through radio and TV shows as well as Op-Eds at dozens of newspapers, international journals, magazine articles, and blog postings including the Huffington Post, BlogHer, and MomsRising, often in collaboration with coalition partners. We invite you to feature these postings on your sites and newsletters, and to let us hear of your caring economy related activities so we cam feature on our website and social media.
CALL TO ACTION: ENHANCE THE FAMILY AND MEDICAL LEAVE ACT (FMLA)
On February 5, 2013 many Americans celebrated the 20th anniversary of the passage of the Family and Medical Leave Act by Congress. But FMLA does not provide paid coverage or leave for workers at firms with less than 50 employees, leaving out millions of people who need to care for family members who are sick or disabled.
MEMBER SPOTLIGHT: NATIONAL COUNCIL OF WOMEN’S ORGANIZATIONS
For the March issue, we interviewed Shireen Mitchell, Co-Chair of the National Council of Women’s Organizations (NCWO).
When was your organization founded?
NCWO grew out of an informal group of women’s organizational leaders after defeat of the Equal Rights Amendment in 1983. NCWO has grown steadily and become stronger each year. Capitalizing on the energy and inspiration following the 1995 Beijing Conference, NCWO has taken an active, powerful role in the policy arena, uniting women’s groups across the country to work together to advance a progressive women’s agenda.
What is your mission?
Our mission is advocating women’s equality through our members, totaling over 240 organizations representing over 11 million women. We recognize the importance of improving programs and policies that address girls’ and women’s economic, legal, social and physical well-being throughout their lifespan. Our policy agenda comprises building blocks for a society free from the inequality, oppression and discrimination that face a variety of women and girls from many different backgrounds and experiences.
Why are you involved as a coalition member of the Caring Economy Campaign?
NCWO is an active coalition member because it shares the CEC’s concerns about women and their economic status, and especially women and Social Security. Since women live longer, Social Security and the attacks on it impact women more strongly than men. NCWO also takes an economic perspective on health care and women, and how access to affordable health care impacts women’s economic situation. The high cost of health care and the ability or inability to manage family planning affects women’s long term economic status. Women having control over if and when to have children, the lack of support for caregiving for children and parents, and way in which women treated in the labor market are all priorities for NCWO and issues addressed by the CEC.
What are the biggest opportunities and challenges facing your constituents today and what are you doing to address them?
One of the biggest opportunities for NCWO members is the passage of the Affordable Care (ACA) and how it will affect women’s economic situation. But there are challenges too with the ACA, especially with how the lack of understanding of how reproductive freedom and health disparities between men and women affect their livelihood and opportunities. Simply put, our biggest challenges are the lack of women’s basic rights, as evidenced by violence against women and the decades-long failure of the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA). The fact that the Violence Against Women Act failed to pass Congress last year and had such struggle to pass this year is a huge battle. Several of our task forces and members organizations are devoting enormous time to these challenges, especially the two task forces on Older Women and Social Security and on Women’s Health.
Each newsletter will feature a Q&A with a CEC member organization, to help us learn more about each other. If you would like to suggest an organization to be featured in an upcoming issue, please email [email protected].
UPDATED DATA POINTS
Child care is essential for mothers to stay employed! Mothers who have regular childcare are TWICE as likely to stay in their jobs than those without regular child care. Please view this new infographic from Bryce Covert at The Nation on “How Universal Preschool Is an Economic Boon to Working Mothers.”
On March 21st, Riane Eisler will give the Distinguished Speaker address in commemoration of Women’s History Month at the U.S. Department of State, co-hosted by the Executive Women at State and the Office of Civil Rights. The event “What’s Good for Women is Good for the World: Foundations for a Caring Economy,” is by invitation only. Please contact Kimberly Otis at [email protected] for more information.
FREE April 3rd Caring Economy Starter Course webinar at 11 am PT, 2 pm ET. REGISTER.
Kimberly Otis will speak about the Caring Economy Campaign at the conference “Advancing Childhood Education through Diplomacy,” April 17-20 in Washington, D.C. For more information go to Association for Childhood Education International’s website at www.acei.org.
2013 Caring Economy Leadership Program Courses and other course schedules are available HERE.
The Caring Economy Campaign is a project of the Center for Partnership Studies.
The mission of the Center for Partnership Studies is to accelerate movement to partnership systems of gender and racial equity, economic prosperity, and a sustainable environment through research, education, grassroots empowerment, and policy initiatives that promote: human development, social well-being, and long-term economic success, with special emphasis on valuing the work of caring and care giving still primarily done by women.
Please provide a generous donation to the essential work of CPS and the Caring Economy Campaign.