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Women's Policy Conference

Posted on November 17, 2014 at 12:23 PM EDT

Women's Bureau Director Latifa Lyles addresses the first biannual New England Women's Policy Conference in Boston on Nov. 7.

"Working families struggle to survive in workplaces with an antiquated notion of working women," said Women's Bureau Director Latifa Lyles as she spoke about equal pay, paid leave, and affordable, quality child care at the first biannual New England Women's Policy Conference in Boston. The event, held on Nov. 7 and co-hosted by the University of Massachusetts Boston's Center for Women in Politics and Public Policy and the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, drew approximately 375 people.


Women in Transportation

Posted on November 17, 2014 at 12:18 PM EDT

The Women's Bureau, along with the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission, co-hosted a roundtable discussion on Oct. 31 to address challenges and barriers confronting women in the transportation industry. The program focused on promising practices for informing and connecting women to careers in transportation, as well as policies and programs that support the advancement of women in this industry. Lucia Bruce, regional administrator in Philadelphia, echoed the sentiment shared at the roundtable. "Now there needs to be a national education and awareness campaign to entice and recruit younger women into the variety of transportation occupations," she said. "An education and awareness campaign would help all women realize that non-traditional occupations for women can lead to better economic stability."


Addressing Challenges for Women

Posted on November 17, 2014 at 12:13 PM EDT

Ana Fortes, program analyst, Women's Bureau, addresses the Pacific Gas & Electric Company's Women's Network Employee Resource Group.

Many of the disparities that women face are often more pronounced for women of color. Addressing those disparities was the topic of a panel discussion in which Women's Bureau Director Latifa Lyles participated on Nov. 12 at the White House. The panel was part of an event held by the White House Council on Women and Girls for its new report, "Women and Girls of Color: Addressing Challenges and Expanding Opportunity." Opening remarks were delivered by Tina Tchen, executive director of the White House Council on Women and Girls. Senior Advisor to the President Valerie Jarrett closed the event with an armchair conversation.


Roundtable for Women

Posted on November 17, 2014 at 11:38 AM EDT

Female business owners, nonprofit organization leaders and academic professionals in the Fitchburg, Mass., community came together for a roundtable to discuss challenges, experiences and ideas for improving the lives of working women and their families. Women's Bureau Regional Administrator Jackie Cooke spoke on the need for equal pay, pay transparency, paid leave, and quality and affordable child care at the event, which was led by Rep. Niki Tsongas. Other speakers included Fitchburg Mayor Lisa Wong and state Sen. Jennifer Flanagan. The Oct. 30 session was held at Fitchburg State University.


Dialogue on Equal Pay

Posted on November 17, 2014 at 11:36 AM EDT

Ana Fortes, program analyst, Women's Bureau, addresses the Pacific Gas & Electric Company's Women's Network Employee Resource Group.

To raise awareness about equal pay and internal compensation practices, Women's Bureau program analyst Ana Victoria Fortes joined Pacific Gas & Electric Co.'s Women's Network Employee Resource Group on a panel in San Francisco. Fortes presented information about women's economic status with an emphasis on women in the utilities industry, outlined factors that contribute to the wage gap, and offered solutions to addressing the wage gap to an audience of more than 60. After the Oct. 29 presentation, attendees engaged the panel in an open dialogue on compensation practices, career development and negotiation strategies to debunk company myths about women's career advancement.


Civil Rights Act's Next 50 Years

Posted on November 17, 2014 at 10:13 AM EDT

Left to right: Michael Sumner of Contra Costa County Workforce Development; Nolan Rollins of the Los Angeles Urban League; Edward Salcedo Jr., of GCAP Services, Inc.; and Kelly Jenkins-Pultz of the department's Women's Bureau participated in the California Association of Equal Rights Professionals' 35th annual training conference on Oct. 24.

In celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act, Women's Bureau program analyst Kelly Jenkins-Pultz joined a panel of experts to discuss issues critical to establishing the future platform for civil rights in California. During the California Association of Equal Rights Professionals' 35th annual training conference on Oct. 24 in Los Angeles, Jenkins-Pultz outlined the challenges facing women in the areas of pay, education, workplace flexibility and advancement into business or nontraditional occupations. Conference attendees participated in breakout sessions to develop policy recommendations to address economic empowerment, education, women and the criminal justice system.


Pay, Paid Leave Discussion

Posted on October 30, 2014 at 10:41 AM EDT

Women from across the Merrimack Valley in Massachusetts participated in an Oct. 17 roundtable where participants addressed the importance of pay transparency, paid leave to care for children and aging parents, and assistance for immigrants who speak English as a second language. The roundtable was hosted by Rep. Niki Tsongas at Nevins Memorial Library in Methuen. Women's Bureau Regional Administrator Jacqueline Cooke discussed the work of the bureau, women's pay and the minimum wage.


Encouraging Female Programmers

Posted on October 30, 2014 at 10:37 AM EDT

Cal State Fullerton students Maira Ahmad and Noemi Quezada won the grand-prize in the Natural Disaster Challenge for their app "Missing You" to help family and friends find each other when separated in times of crisis, at the 2014 International Women's Hackathon at California State University San Marcos.

In an effort to promote leadership and increase the representation of women and girls in computer science and programming, the Women's Bureau's San Francisco Regional Office joined 11 local organizations in hosting the 2014 International Women's Hackathon at California State University San Marcos on Oct. 11 in San Marcos, Calif. The hackathon was part of a number of events convened by Microsoft Research. Approximately 60 girls ages 16 and older participated in the 12-hour event, designing websites, games and apps to address climate change and disaster response. Despite making up 47 percent of the U.S. labor force, women hold only 23 percent of computer programming jobs.


Women's Leadership Program

Posted on October 30, 2014 at 10:33 AM EDT

Women's Bureau Regional Administrator Jackie Cooke (left), Mass. Gov. Deval Patrick and Susan Adams from the Center for Women and Business at Bentley University following the meeting of the Massachusetts Women's Leadership Fellowship.

The inaugural fellows of the Massachusetts Workforce Women's Leadership Fellowship Program met with Gov. Deval Patrick, Women's Bureau Regional Administrator Jacqueline Cooke, and Susan Adams of the Center for Women and Business at Bentley University in Waltham on Sept. 30. The fellowship was created to expand access to opportunities for women leaders in government and the private sector. During the meeting, Cooke highlighted the recent Women's Bureau Forums on Working Families and the White House Summit on Working Families, and commended the governor and the university for creating the program. Cooke called it "a win for the women, a win for the commonwealth, a win for participants' future employers, and a win for the economy."


Learning About the Pay Gap

Posted on October 30, 2014 at 10:31 AM EDT

Students, staff and faculty gathered in Chicago on Sept. 24 to learn about the struggle for equal pay in the American workforce at a discussion panel hosted by the Women's Bureau in collaboration with Loyola University Chicago's Gannon Center for Women and Leadership. Participants learned about the pay gap between men and women as well as strategies they can use to narrow the gap in their careers. "Many students don't realize the wage gap continues to affect their generation," said Melissa Wojnaroski, a Women's Bureau program analyst. "We want them to know what they will be facing when they graduate, and what they can do to change it."


Trauma Guide Workshop

Posted on October 30, 2014 at 10:29 AM EDT

Veterans services specialists, university administrators and representatives from more than 10 area colleges and universities met at City Colleges of Chicago on Sept. 25, to participate in a workshop based on the Women's Bureau's Trauma Informed Care Guide. The half-day workshop gave participants the opportunity to discuss strengths, challenges and best practices. "Though many join the military as a way to move their careers forward, sadly, women veterans age 25 to 34 face higher unemployment rates than their civilian counterparts. We want to change that," said Women's Bureau program analyst and workshop facilitator Melissa Wojnaroski. "Creating a stronger network of trauma-informed supports within our university systems can help ensure women veterans are able to successfully complete their education and transition into the civilian workforce."


Older Workers Roundtable

Posted on October 30, 2014 at 10:27 AM EDT

As the number of older women in or seeking to re-enter the workforce increases, the Women's Bureau is looking at the unique issues facing them. The WB's Dallas office, in collaboration with the Women's Center of Tarrant County, convened the latest in a series of roundtables on the issue in Fort Worth, Texas, on Sept. 25. Organizations on aging, women's advocates, academics and local workforce representatives came together to discuss the needs this population faces on a local level. "Identifying the characteristics of older women workers, barriers and challenges they face, and resources and strategies for overcoming such barriers is the first step in working together to better assist their clients," said senior program analyst Dolores Bischof.


Google + Hangout

Posted on October 30, 2014 at 10:25 AM EDT

Image representing the paid family and medical leave programs.

Learning about participants' experiences in the Women in Transportation internship program, and how involvement has influenced career trajectory, was the objective of a Google+ Hangout organized by the Women's Bureau's New York office and the Department of Transportation on Sept. 25. DOT started the internship program in 2011 to encourage young women to pursue careers in transportation. Participants highlighted mentorship by transportation internship supervisors in helping to positively shape the internship, and facilitate personal and professional growth. The Women's Bureau aims to help women prepare for and advance in non-traditional, high-growth and higher-paying jobs such as in the transportation industry.


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