Pelosi Casts Spotlight on Efforts of Women’s Caucus to Help Working Families
WASHINGTON – Speaker Nancy Pelosi held a press event with the Democratic Women’s Caucus on Thursday for the Care Economy.
Pelosi said the event was to tell the American people that the Democratic women in the House of Representatives and their colleagues in the Senate are “relentless and persistent” on behalf of America’s working families.
The Care Economy is the sector of the economy that is responsible for the provision of services and care that contribute to the nurturing and reproduction of current and future populations.
During the event, Pelosi highlighted the impact of the pandemic on women and caregivers, saying that many were pulled from the workforce and have not yet returned.
Rep. Brenda Lawrence, D-Mich., co-chair of the Democratic Women’s Caucus, attributed the drop of women in the workforce to women having to step up during the pandemic to take care of their children, parents and families.
“I want everyone here to know that women—when we come to the mic, were not here begging. We are 57% of the workforce,” Lawrence said. “This pandemic has wreaked havoc on our economy by attacking and depriving women of the opportunity to work during this time.”
Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn., chairwoman of the House Committee on Appropriations, also spoke about expanding the Child Tax Credit, which was signed into law by President Biden in the American Rescue Plan.
“It is a lifeline to middle-class families and will lift 55% of children in this country out of poverty,” DeLauro said. “It doesn’t get better than that.”
The first round of checks for the Child Tax Credit will be sent July 15 and will range from $250 to $300 to help with the cost of childcare, diapers, clothing, health care and other expenses.
DeLauro said they will work to make the expansion and improvement of tax credit included in the rescue plan permanent.
“Children and families have to be able to count on the benefit long after the end of the pandemic,” DeLauro said. “You can’t cut child poverty by 55% and eliminate extreme poverty in 2021, and then double child poverty in 2022. That can’t happen.”
Myra Jones-Taylor, the chief policy officer at ZERO TO THREE, a nonprofit that works to ensure babies and toddlers benefit from early connections and development, said the American Rescue Plan came just in time to keep the childcare system from a complete crisis.
Jones-Taylor echoed the statement of DeLauro, urging policymakers to make the enhanced tax credit in the American Rescue Plan permanent in order to benefit infants, especially infants from low-income families.
Ending the event, Pelosi emphasized that the women of Congress support bipartisanship, infrastructure and other issues but said America can’t go forward without the parts that care for families.
“If women have childcare, it contributes to the entrepreneurship of our country,” Pelosi said. “We think [the] child tax credit is social security for children and that we have to have it and we have to be predictable and permanent.”