An excerpt from Democratic Underground:
[T]he deck has been stacked against working moms for years. And even though women are the main breadwinners, or joint breadwinners, in two-thirds of the families across the country, it’s only getting worse.
When I was a law professor, I spent years studying why middle class families were going broke. In my academic research on bankruptcy, I uncovered some grim facts:
- In one year, more women will file for bankruptcy than graduate from college.
- Having a child is the single best predictor that a woman will end up in financial collapse.
- Single moms are more likely than any other group to file for bankruptcy – more likely than the elderly, more likely than divorced men, and more likely than people living in poor neighborhoods.
- Single moms who had been to college are actually 60% more likely to end up bankrupt than their less educated sisters.
Women get hit hard. They still earn, on average, only 77 cents to the dollar that her male colleague earns. Bloomberg analyzed census data to find that women are paid less in 264/265 of major occupations – in 99.6% of jobs, women get paid less than men. Yet Republicans have blocked the Paycheck Fairness Act – a law that would make sure women don’t get fired just for asking what the guy down the hall makes.
Minimum wage workers haven’t gotten a raise in seven years, and today nearly two-thirds of minimum wage workers are women. Mothers of very young children disproportionately work low-wage jobs in every state in the country. A minimum wage job no longer keeps a mother and baby above the poverty line, yet Republicans continue to block legislation to raise the minimum wage.