SWS – Political Participation2021-09-20T00:30:50-04:00

Political  Participation

Shaping their own future

When women participate in the political process, they shape policies in ways that reflect their interests and needs. The Status of Women in the States’ Political Participation Index looks at women as voters, grassroots activists and campaign fundraisers, and officeholders and examines the uneven progress they have made.

Explore the Data

The Political Participation Index measures women’s political participation through four key indicators. Each state is ranked and graded based on their performance on these four measures.

Women in Elected Office
Average Percent of Women Who Registered to Vote, 2016 and 2018
Average Percent of Women Who Voted, 2016 and 2018
Women’s Institutional Resources Index

Political Participation Rank and Score by State

Articles and Publications

Stronger Together: Union Membership Boosts Women’s Earnings and Economic Security

In every state, unionized women out earn women in non-union jobs—an essential wage advantage that would increase women’s economic security following the pandemic-induced “she-cession.” This brief shares insights on the ways unions narrow gender wage gaps and improve economic security for all women.

An Impossible Juggling Act: Young Parents during the COVID-19 Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic upended life for countless families and brought heightened attention to the plight of working parents. Mothers with young and school-aged children have borne the brunt of the care crisis in the United States, as schools and daycare centers across the country closed. Compared to fathers, mothers have been more likely to exit the labor force prematurely, become unemployed, and reduce their work hours during the pandemic (Heggeness 2020; Landivar et al. 2020).

By |August 19, 2021|Briefing Paper, Publications|

Leveraging Head Start for Student Parent Families

Student parents face significant challenges that can limit their ability to enter, persist in, and graduate from college. Innovative partnerships between Head Start and the higher education system is a promising strategy to bring together essential supports to meet the needs of student parents and set them up for long-term success. This briefing paper explores what this partnership might look like, and how federal and state policy could encourage greater support for student parents and their families through Head Start.

Strong Jobs Growth for Women in July, but a Troubling Recovery of Child Care Jobs

New July jobs data show that women’s jobs grew by 649,000, marking the largest jobs growth since August 2020. Yet women’s recovery continues to lag behind men’s: Women still need 3.1 million more jobs on payroll to get back to pre-COVID levels. And, child care centers are recovering much more slowly than the overall economy, signaling difficulties for women’s return to work.

Climbing the Leadership Ladder: Women’s Progress Stalls

What prevents women from reaching the highest rungs of the leadership ladder? This report seeks to answer this by taking a closer look at the representation of women in management and leadership positions across the United States—and the barriers that hold organizations back from achieving full gender and racial equity in leadership.

By |August 9, 2021|Publications, Report|
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