2018 Legislative Session Outcomes
A Session of Hits and Misses for Women’s Economic Progress
Women are the co- or sole-breadwinners in nearly half of Colorado households with children under 18. Their economic success lifts families, communities, and our economy for generations to come. But persistent barriers, such as the gender pay gap and lack of work supports, have impeded their economic progress for far too long.
During each legislative session, WFCO works with our grantee partners to focus on nonpartisan policies and direct service programs that create transformative opportunities for Colorado women.
In the 2018 legislative session, Colorado hit some high notes for women in the workplace but missed several key opportunities to foster their economic security. Read the outcomes of the measures we took positions on.
Wins: Quality and affordability of child care
We are proud that our work with other advocates, policy makers and stakeholders led to access to job training programs and family planning resources for women. Measures passed will invest in and boost the quality of child care and ease the cost burden of care, which are persistent barriers to women’s economic advancement.
Misses: Pay equity and family leave
But we are disappointed that legislators did not do more. Recent research by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research showed that the pay gap in Colorado between all women 16+ who work full-time, year-round and all men 16+ who work full-time, year-round is .86 cents on the dollar. Colorado had a chance to pass measures that would have helped women overcome barriers to workplace entry and stabilization, boosted equity, and ensured they could take off needed time to care for their families without having to forego pay.
Looking forward: 2018 elections
The Colorado legislative session has ended, but our commitment to create long overdue change will never wane. As the 2018 elections approach, WFCO is developing a nonpartisan election platform based on research to educate candidates and voters about the issues that matter to women. We’ll also take a close look at statewide ballot measures and offer our analysis.
Thank you to our statewide partners who join us as we drive toward equity and advocate for progress toward prosperity for women in Colorado, including 9to5 Colorado, The Bell Policy Center, Colorado Center on Law & Policy, Colorado Children’s Campaign, Colorado Fiscal Institute, Colorado Women’s Bar Association, Frontline Public Affairs, Save the Children Action Network (SCAN), our public policy committee members and advisors, and our regional committee members and advocates. We are grateful to the generous donors who make our public policy work possible: Women’s Funding Network; The Chambers Fund, a donor-advised fund of The Women’s Foundation of Colorado; Women Give – United Way of Larimer County; and anonymous individuals.
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