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The Women's Bureau was created by law in 1920 to formulate standards and policies to promote the welfare of wage-earning women, improve their working conditions, increase their efficiency, and advance their opportunities for profitable employment.
Women in the workforce are vital to the nation's economic security. The Women's Bureau develops policies and standards and conducts inquiries to safeguard the interests of working women; to advocate for their equality and economic security for themselves and their families; and to promote quality work environments.
The Women's Bureau was established in the U.S. Department of Labor by Public Law No. 259 of June 5, 1920. The law gave the Bureau the duty to “formulate standards and policies which shall promote the welfare of wage-earning women, improve their working conditions, increase their efficiency, and advance their opportunities for profitable employment.” It also gave the Bureau the authority to investigate and report to the U.S. Department of Labor upon all matters pertaining to the welfare of women in industry. It is the only federal agency mandated to represent the needs of wage-earning women in the public policy process, learn more.
For more information on previous Women's Bureau Directors visit the Director's Gallery.