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Using Our Voice

We are working to create an equitable Vermont where people of all identities and backgrounds have equal access to opportunities and to thrive economically - where they make confident, deliberate choices about life and work that reflect an expansive grasp of what’s possible.

2021 Priorities

In 2021, VWW is calling for change in the systems and structures surrounding women's employment; career pathways for youth; child care; and community re-entry services for women involved in the criminal justice system. Click here for the 2021 Priorities Overview pdf.

employment

Workplace flexibility is a simple, low-cost strategy to recruit and retain women in the workplace, and close th eleadership gap among men and women. It allows employees to achieve a better work/life balance and manage unforeseen scheduling conflicts, such as a child care emergency, and benefits the employer by increasing employee productivity, engagement, and retention. Women are leaving the workforce at 4x the rate of men during the COVID-19 pandemic, largely due to the conflicting demands of child care, remote schooling and work. Stepping away from work, even temporarily, can negatively impact women's economic independence. Click here for the full report.

  • VWW calls on Vermont employers increase flexibility in their workplaces to better support working families, and recruit and retain female employees.

 

​​career pathways

Female, gender non-conforming, and BIPOC youth occupy a small portion of students enrolled in non-traditional programs at Vermont career and technical education (CTE) centers. According to Change The Story's 2019 report: Women, Work and Wages in Vermont, the number of VT female students completing non-traditional programs has remained between 5 - 14 percent since 2009, except for law enforcement programs. Click here for the full report.

  • Vermont must strengthen pathways to careers in STEM and trade industries for girls, gender non-conforming, and BIPOC youth. Gender and racially equitable recruitment, programming and career guidance in schools and CTE centers can reduce occupational segregation and grow VT’s workforce in these high-demand fields.

 

child care

With women providing the majority of unpaid and paid caregiving, a lack of employment supports for working families - namely paid family leave and an affordable, accessible child care system - disproportionately impacts women’s economic independence. Women should not have to choose between caring for their families and keeping their jobs. Click here for the full report.

  • VWW calls on the State to pass universal paid family and medical leave, as laid out by the Vermont Family and Medical Leave Insurance Coalition (VT FaMLI).
  • VWW supports the creation of a child care system that is accessible, affordable, high-quality and accountable, as laid out in Let’s Grow Kids’ policy agenda.

 

Re-Entry Services

Justice-involved women, due to their gender and other intersecting factors, face tremendous barriers to economic independence after being released from Chittenden Regional Correctional Facility (CRCF). Click here for the full report.

  • State-funded gender, race and trauma-responsive re-entry services and supports for women leaving incarceration are essential to their successful reintegration into the community.
  • Vermont must increase the availability of transitional housing, with wraparound supports, for women.
  • VWW calls on the Vermont Department of Corrections (DOC) to proactively provide stateissued IDs to women pre-release, thereby eliminating one of the major barriers for women seeking employment.

 

Alison Lamagna

Alison Lamagna

Director of Programs and Gender Equity

802-655-8900 x 104 alamagnaREMOVETHISBEFORESENDING@vtworksforwomen.org

Please contact VWW for testimony, participant stories, or shared expertise in any related matters.

 

 

Vermont Works for Women recognizes that, in addition to gender, many factors shape the lived experiences of individuals in Vermont, including, but not limited to, race, religion, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, national origin, ethnicity, ability, age, and socioeconomic status. These factors intersect and overlap to create unique personal identities, some of which can greatly amplify the barriers and challenges that women face.

Vermont Works for Women is committed to supporting policies that both include the voices and address the diverse needs of Vermont women, particularly those from marginalized communities.

Resources

Employment and Career Pathways

 

Child Care

 

Re-entry Services