Economy

USAID Afghan Rug Project Aims to Empower Women and Bolster the Economy

A project funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) is putting Afghanistan’s traditional rug industry back into the hands of Afghan weavers. This project, based in Kabul, aims to grow Afghanistan’s economy and empower women. The nine-million-dollar project, run by Rob Leahy in South Carolina, acts as the ‘middle man’ between Afghan...

Women Make Up the Majority of COVID-19 Job Losses in the U.S.

Though they make up only half the U.S. workforce, women make up 55 percent of those currently unemployed due to COVID-19, effectively erasing the gains made in workplace equality since the recession of 2008. The current unemployment crisis has been deemed a “she-cession” by C. Nicole Mason, president and chief executive of the Institute for...

House Democrats Propose $3 Trillion Coronavirus Relief Package

House Democrats and Speaker Nancy Pelosi have released their newest bill to address the coronavirus pandemic, proposing ambitious measures to boost the economy, increase COVID-19 testing, and ensure safe elections this fall. Party leaders expect to vote on the bill, dubbed the Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions (HEROES) Act, on Friday. The 1,815-page...

Hawaii Introduces COVID-19 ‘Feminist Economic Recovery Plan’

The Hawai’i State Commission on the Status of Women introduced a ‘feminist economic recovery plan’ that is designed to help women recover from the economic hardships created by the coronavirus pandemic. The plan is the first of its’ kind in the nation. The plan, called “Building Bridges, Not Walking on Backs: A Feminist Economic Recovery...

COVID-19 Job Losses Wipe out Insurance Access for Millions of Americans

As millions file for unemployment, many are now dealing with a pandemic-related ripple effect: a massive loss of employment-dependent health and dental insurance across America. It’s difficult to count just how many Americans have lost insurance. Since Mid-March, about 22 million workers have filed unemployment claims. As the pandemic continues and state workforce offices slowly...

Women Are The Majority of America’s Essential Workforce

Nearly one in three jobs held by women are officially considered essential work, meaning women are the majority of those on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic. According to a new report by The New York Times, nearly 52 percent of all essential workers are women. This includes 77 percent of the health care worker,...

Millions of Low-Income Individuals Waiting for Relief Payments That May Never Arrive

Wednesday, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin announced that more than 80 million Americans have received their COVID-19 relief payments via direct deposit. However, millions of people are still waiting, or may never receive their payments. The key challenge for the IRS is getting payments to individuals who are not typically required to file tax returns–largely low-income...

Seven Midwest States Announce Their Plan to Partner on Reopening

On Thursday, governors from seven Midwestern states announced that they will coordinate on reopening the Midwest regional economy. The Midwest pact joins the Northeast and West Coast in an effort to coordinate amid the coronavirus pandemic. The Midwest bipartisan effort includes Illinois, Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Kentucky. In the governors’ collaboration, they announced...

COVID-19 Small Business Loan Program Runs Out of Funds as Businesses Struggle

Funding for the Paycheck Protection Program, a new federal program part of the $2.2 trillion stimulus bill signed into law late March, is already running out of funding. With no viable proposals by lawmakers in the works as of yet, the risk of bankruptcies and additional millions of unemployed workers seems more and more plausible...

Insurance Companies Say Action Must Be Taken to Avoid Collapse of Insurance Industry

Representatives of the insurance industry took action and wrote a letter to some congressional lawmakers in California, revealing that insurance companies do not have the foundations necessary to withstand the COVID-19 pandemic. “Insurance coverage works by spreading risk, but that model simply cannot account for a situation in which losses are catastrophic and nearly universal,”...

Medical Professionals Ask For Advance Medicare Payments During Pandemic

For many healthcare professionals who own medical practices during the coronavirus outbreak, concerns have grown over how to pay rent. Private practices, hospitals, and other healthcare facilities have faced a massive influx of patients, though revenue has dropped because appointments are now generally over the phone or computer. This loss of revenue makes it difficult to pay...

Majority of COVID-19 Related Job Loss Falls on Women and Minorities

The U.S. Labor Department reports that 701,000 workers were laid off in March due to COVID-19, with almost 60 percent of those being women. Earlier this year, women had overtaken men to make up the majority of the national workforce, but layoffs have put them back in the minority. Stay-at-home orders and mandatory business closures have...

Need for Universal Paid Sick and Family Medical Leave More Urgent Than Ever

The global pandemic caused by COVID-19, also commonly referred to as coronavirus, has revealed a number of systemic flaws in the United States that must be addressed, including paid leave. While the nature of this medical crisis draws attention to the lack of paid sick leave, paid family leave is a benefit that should also...

Fiscal Policies Can Increase Female Workforce Participation

Equitable workforce opportunities for women are beneficial to everyone, but research from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) shows that female workforce participation still lags greatly behind that of men. Due to the stubborn persistence of gender gaps in wages and educational opportunities, the average female workforce participation rate is 20 percentage points behind the male...

Trump’s New Budget Cuts Benefits for the Most Vulnerable

President Trump released a $44.8 trillion budget on Monday which includes deep cuts to student loan assistance, affordable housing, food stamps, and Medicaid. It does however include an increase in spending for the military, national defense, border enforcement, individual income tax cuts, and even allocates money for the “Space Force” initiative. The budget plans recommends...

New Oxfam Study Shows Women’s Labor is Underpaid and Undervalued

A recent study by international nonprofit Oxfam shows that the state of global economic inequality is out of control. Oxfam highlights the severity of this inequality and the negative impacts it has on women by shining a light on the fact that: the world’s richest 22 men having a greater combined wealth than all of...

Nearly One Million Americans Will Lose Access to Food Stamps under New Trump Rule

Under a new rule enacted by the Trump administration, close to 700,000 people will lose SNAP benefits due to regulations that make it more difficult for states to waive the requirement that “able bodied” recipients work at least 20 hours a week. The rule will affect people aged 18-49 who do not have children and...

Esther Duflo Wins Nobel Prize in Economics for Work Addressing Global Poverty

Esther Duflo, a researcher from Cambridge, Massachusetts, alongside two others, has been awarded this year’s Nobel Memorial Prize for economics. Duflo is part of a trio of researchers from Cambridge, Massachusetts, including her husband Abhijit Banerjee and colleague Michael Kremer, to win the prestigious prize for their work in addressing global poverty. “This year’s Laureates...

According to a New Report, the Number of Women-Owned Business is at an All-Time High

According to a report published Monday by American Express, the number of women-owned businesses in America has taken off in recent years. American Express’ annual State of Women-Owned Businesses Report — which merges data from the Bureau of Economic Analysis and the Census Bureau — estimates America’s total number of businesses led by women climbed...
Trans-Pacific Trade Partnership Still Needs Improvements in Human and Workers Rights

Trans-Pacific Trade Partnership Still Needs Improvements in Human and Workers Rights

Legislators and activists are still concerned about the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a proposed regional free trade agreement that addresses a broad range of issues and is currently being negotiated between the United States and 11 Pacific Rim nations.