January 16, 2014
A sustainable nation is constructed on the economy, health and education of its citzenry. One of the most valuable components of a nation are its women. It can be perceived that many ills have been stripped away yet, disparity and inequities continue to multiply. The data provided within “Maria Shriver’s Report, ‘A Woman’s Nation Pushes Back From the Brink,’ Reveals The Financial Struggles Of American Women” are more complex and if left to continue lead to unsustainable outcomes.
The report from Maria Shriver, famous and known by historical connections and success. “Maria Owings Shriver, born November 6, 1955) is an American journalist and author of six best-selling books. She has received a Peabody Award, and was co-anchor for NBC’s Emmy-winning coverage of the 1988 Summer Olympics. As executive producer of The Alzheimer’s Project, Shriver earned two Emmy Awards and an Academy of Television Arts & Sciences award for developing a “television show with a conscience”. She was formerly First Lady of California as the wife of actor and then-California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, from whom she is now separated. She is a member of the Kennedy family (her mother, Eunice Kennedy Shriver was a sister of John F. Kennedy, Robert F. Kennedy, and Edward Kennedy).”
The Huffington Post reports, “That’s one of the key findings from The Shriver Report: A Woman’s Nation Pushes Back from the Brink, a new report coauthored by Maria Shriver and the Center for American Progress.” Further, “The report features extensive research on women’s roles in the economy as well as personal essays from Beyoncé Knowles, Hillary Clinton, Eva Longoria and LeBron James,” yet, the state of women is precarious calling them lead as protector of home, family and bread winner, .
“According to the report, 42 million women and the 28 million children who depend on them are living at less than 200 percent of the federal poverty line — equivalent to an annual income of $47,000 supporting a family of four.”
Today’s women still inherit the historical and inequitable division of labor in which $0.77 cents is earned for every dollar a man. This number is exacerbated for women of color whom today make less than their female counterparts.
Three critical factors contributing to women’s poverty are:
- Women are more likely than men to work in “pink-collar” service or caregiving positions, which are usually poorly paid and lack benefits.
- Even though women earn the majority of post high-school degrees, higher education is difficult to obtain.
- Single-parent families are increasingly common. According to the report, “more than half of the babies born to women ages 30 and younger are born to unmarried mothers, most of them white.”
As Shriver writes in the report’s opening chapter: “Leave out the women, and you don’t have a full and robust economy. Lead with the women, and you do.”
This disparity is larger as women are managing the gap within technology, science, economics and leadership. As women have made great leaps with the news of the first women CEO, General Motors and more, disparity still exists. The ability to produce a sustainable economy is based on the sustainability of its people. When people are objectified and minimized it is only over time that the fiber of every community, city and then nation deteriorates as in any asset undervalued becomes obsolescent and thus depreciate’s the entire organization.
The full text of The Shriver Report is available for download on Amazon.com.