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Why it is Important to Recognize Equal Pay Day

Today, April 14, 2015, we recognize Equal Pay Day. This day marks how far into the year American women must work to earn what American men earned in the previous year. The National Committee on Pay Equality put Equal Pay Day into place in 1996 as a public awareness event to alert people of the gap between men and women's wages.  The White House estimates that full-time working women only earn 77% of what their male counterparts earn. This means women need to work about 60 EXTRA days to earn what men have earned in the previous year! In short, it is important to remember this day each year, as long as this gap continues to exist.

 

Please check out this list of resources on Equal Pay Day:

Small Businesses are one of the biggest drivers of employment, having generated more that 67% of new jobs in the past 17 years. However, small businesses often have difficulty finding access to capital to support growth and create jobs. Cash flow problems make it difficult to fund recruitment and training.

"Partnership for Employment" is an exciting new "Plot" public/private initiative between Women Impacting Public Policy (WIPP), the Department of Labor's Office of Workers' Compensation Programs (OWCP) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) dedicated to matching these skilled Federal Employees with available positions at small companies.

The purpose of this initiative is to assist federal workers in finding alternative work opportunities and to assist small businesses with the cost of recruiting, training and hiring these individuals through the existing Assisted Reemployment Program.

Through the Assisted Reemployment program, private employers who hire federal civilian employees who are currently receiving workers compensation benefits may be eligible for a salary subsidy of up to 75% of wages paid. To find out more information on Assisted Reemployment, please see Assisted Reemployment Overview.

For more information, or to post an available position on a job board for viewing by Federal Agencies, please see Partnership for Employment.

 

 

Numbers Tell a Story

12:41 PM October 22, 2012

At WIPP's annual conference, the National Women's Business Council (NWBC) started a conversation among the women's business groups about the number of women businesses in the U.S. and how the numbers are used. The project is called "Collective Voices" Numbers tell a story. In the case of women business owners, it paints a story of their revenues, their employees and their economic impact.

 

Doesn't the federal government have these numbers at its fingertips? Well, yes, if you like to believe old statistics. The last numbers the government collected on business owners was the 2007 Census. That was before a big event - the recession. It seems to me that revenue numbers, number of employees and even numbers of businesses would be drastically different in 2012 than in 2007. The implication for policy makers is that they are basing their decisions on old data. And government decisions are very numbers driven.

 

This is why we need the NWBC. They are a government advisory group. Their numbers on women's businesses are the ones that the women's business community uses as well as elected officials. So, we need their numbers to be right. The newest study on women business owners was not conducted by the federal government, but commissioned by American Express Open and authored by Julie Weeks, President of Womanable in 2012. Her statistics, based on an analysis of the 2007 Census data shows the following: The growth in the number of women-owned firms continues at rates exceeding the national average, that women continue to diversify into all industries, and growth pains occur at the 5-9 employee and $250K-$499K revenue ranges. Women-owned firms are now estimated to number just over 8.1 million, generating nearly $1.3 trillion in revenues and employing 7.7 million workers.

 

  Contrast that with the government's 2007 numbers, which show that there are 7.8 million women-owned businesses in the United States. Women-owned firms make up 28.7% of all nonfarm businesses across the country and generate $1.2 trillion in total receipts. A full 88.3% of these firms are non-employer firms. The remaining 11.7% of the firms have paid employees, employing a total of 7.6 million people across the country with a payroll of $217.6 billion. These employer firms have average receipts of $1.1 million.

 

Amy Millman, President of Springboard Enterprises, raises the point that women led companies who have venture backing are not counted at all because venture backed firms do not have 51% ownership even though they are led by a woman and would push the economic impact numbers upward because these firms are high growth.

For those of us who work with Capitol Hill and the White House on policy issues concerning women owned businesses, numbers are key to the investment we are asking them to make. Access to capital is an investment as is providing training and business assistance through Women's Business Centers and the PRIME program. An investment in women owned businesses is making changes to the Women Owned Small Business procurement program to allow as many women as possible to be successful federal contractors. An investment means keeping the Microloan program and making sure government backed loans by the SBA are successfully lending to women business owners.

 

These investments are difficult to fight for if our numbers are old. New numbers will give advocates such as WIPP, direction. New numbers would be instructive with respect to the effect of tax reform on women owned businesses. The House and Senate Small Business Committees would be better positioned to advocate on our behalf if they had the correct numbers.

 

Advocacy is based on facts. Without numbers, we are just expressing opinions. It is my hope that this vital project by NWBC is concluded expeditiously. Women business owners can't wait.

 

By Ann Sullivan, WIPP Government Relations.

 

Today we live in a world in which women get paid less than men for the same job, are underrepresented in certain sectors of the economy, and represent the smallest fractions of civic leadership; yet the world for the next generation of women could be very different. To that end the White House has announced the Equal Futures challenge - an effort to promote four key objectives: advancing women in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields; expanding economic security for survivors of domestic violence; promoting civic education and public leadership for girls; and enhancing opportunities for women entrepreneurs.

 

Secretary Clinton has garnered world-wide support and partners in this initiative. The United States is joined by twelve other founding members of the United Nations: Australia, Bangladesh, Benin, Denmark, Finland, Indonesia, Jordan, the Netherlands, Peru, Senegal and Tunisia, along with the EU. Each have made national commitments to policy, legal, and regulatory reforms that would promote expanded civic and economic opportunity for women.

 

Currently only five percent of the world's heads of state are women and domestically the numbers are not much better. Less that 17 percent of our representative body is comprised of women, with 17 women in the Senate and 73 in the House of Representatives.

 

As part of an effort to reach out to young women and girls, this initiative will provide educational background on the structure of local, state and federal government and guidance on how girls can get involved at every level. The 'Start Young' program, designed to provide an early path to entrepreneurial success for young women, will also be expanding from 3 to 10 cities.

 

In a salute to our women in uniform and all they have to offer, the White House will also expand its 'Boots to Business' program in the Spring of 2013, to offer over 40,000 veteran women access to the training and resources they need to start own business.

 

Encompassing all generations the White House will also be joining forces with the AARP to offer retired women targeted training to start their own business.

 

While these programs offer assistance and training to American women of every age, the idea that America's girls deserve the same opportunities and prospects as boys is a propelling force behind this program. Through initiatives like this we can ensure a brighter future for the next generation of American women, which will not only ensure a healthier private sector but also pave the path toward a more prosperous civil society.

 

For more information about this initiative click here.

 

#WIPP

Most of us can identify a mentor who has helped us foster important skill sets during difficult periods in our lives. WIPP is proud to support AT&T a valued WIPP partner - with the launch of Aspire Mentoring Academy. Aspire Mentoring Academy will offer AT&T employees three different ways to mentor students across the country that are at risk of dropping out of school:

Aspire Job Marketing: Building on AT&T's job shadow program, employees share life experiences and career advice through project-based activities during the workday.

Aspire Skills Mentoring: Employees share academic and life skills with students through self-planned or organized activities in schools and in the community.

Aspire e-Mentoring: Utilizing technology, employees share math skills and their relevance in the real world through online mentoring, starting in a San Francisco Bay Area pilot program and expanding next year.

AT&T Aspire has put together this key engagement program with a $350 million commitment focused on a high school success leading to college and career readiness. With this support of AT&T employees, they can provide students with 1 million hours of mentoring.

Aspire Mentoring Academy provides the opportunity for employees to help students stay on track to graduate high school and succeed in college, the workforce and beyond. WIPP is excited to promote this fantastic program that AT&T Aspire has worked so hard to put together.

For more information about the Aspire Mentoring Academy, click here.

 

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