Pa. women left behind
So much for Pennsylvania as the birthplace of freedom and democracy. A recent report from the Center for American Progress gave our commonwealth a “C-” grade for how it treats the 6 million women living here.
We rank 28th among the 50 states on women's rights, meaning women here have a long path ahead before they get a fair shot at achieving economic security and living a healthy life. Worse, we scored a “D+” on economic factors for women (e.g., we make 76 cents to every dollar a man makes;15 percent of us live in poverty), a “D” in leadership (the Congressional delegation contains one woman and we hold less than 37% of the managerial positions) and a “C” in health (there's only one OB/GYN for every 20,000 women, we have the nation's 12th highest infant mortality rate and our Legislature makes it as difficult as possible for women to get reproductive health care).
Pennsylvania women deserve an equal shot at a good life and a state where they are treated equally at home, work and school. They deserve a seat in the boardroom and in government, and basic economic security and proper health care. They deserve the freedom to decide whether or not to have children based on their beliefs, not under the boot of other people's politics or religion.
We need to be smart about who we elect and make our voice heard by voting, because Pennsylvania badly needs to get on the right track for women.
We've made great strides in the last 50 years, but this report shows we have miles to go. Women and men of Pennsylvania: Unite to effect real change for women, whether it is access to health care, economic security or freedom from violence.
Michelman is co-chairwoman of WomenVote PA; Frietsche is a senior staff attorney in the Western Pennsylvania office of the Women's Law Project.
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments â either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.