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McCollum, Meng, and Colleagues Issue Joint Statement Highlighting Impact of Pandemic on Women

March 24, 2021
Press Release
On Equal Pay Day, U.S. Representatives call for massive investments to prevent long-term setbacks for women

Congresswomen Betty McCollum (MN-04), Grace Meng (NY-06), Lucille Roybal-Allard (CA-40), and Brenda Lawrence (MI-14), joined by 32 House colleagues, issued a joint statement today highlighting the disproportionate impacts the COVID-19 pandemic has had on women across America.

In the statement, the legislators write:

“Today is Equal Pay Day, the day in 2021 where women’s earnings finally caught up to what men earned in 2020. While strides had been made to close this earnings gap, this past year has the potential of erasing years of progress because of the disproportionate impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had on women… Due to unstable child care and disruptions to school schedules, millions of mothers have been forced to leave the workforce to care for a child… Women disproportionately work lower wage hourly jobs that have been slashed across the country due to store closings and other pandemic-related restrictions. This has resulted in women suffering the majority of pandemic-related job losses….”

The statement continues:

“While we are encouraged by the passage of the American Rescue Plan and strongly support the provisions that help protect working women, we also encourage our colleagues to consider this package as a down payment. We need transformational structural change to fight against the economic, financial, gender, and racial injustices. We need massive investments in our child care infrastructure, including universal child care and early learning, $15 minimum wage, and paid leave programs; without these, women will be set back a generation by this pandemic.”

A copy of the full statement is available here.