Report on the Task Force on Employment – 1967

Discussion was had of the attitudes of newspapers towards the interests of working women, and of industry opposition to women workers in certain areas.

Examples were given by various individuals of discrimination against women in union jobs, as well as jobs in education, government, libraries, the hard sciences, medical arts, law and the space affiliated field, which women are being discouraged from entering.

We suggest a study and research item as a long range effort, that NOW collect and compile existing data on women’s employment, such as salaries, promotion levels and other data, which would be more detailed and penetrating than the compilations now available.

Resolution 1: (As an action item of first priority)

We urge that NOW set a day of national action on sex-segregated help-wanted advertising. This could be the mailing to the EEOC, or possibly to the President himself, of marked help-wanted sections from all over the country, or possibly picketing of the newspapers, on a set day.

Resolution 2: (As another high priority item)

We urge that facts regarding discrimination against women workers, women’s need to work and their reasons for working, women’s median salary levels and similar data be constantly furnished in brief, concise, graphic form to NOW members. This hard data would make our members more effective recruiters, persuaders, speakers, and members of panels. This data could also be distributed by our members to other interested groups at strategic times.

Resolution 3:

Press for day care centers for all working mothers.

Resolution 4:

That local chapters endeavor to recruit as NOW members those women who have effective influence on the nation’s newspapers. These women might include advertisers and wives of advertisers, owners and wives of owners, advertising and public relations women, department store executives who place advertising, and employment agencies which place advertising.

Resolution 5:

That local chapters endeavor to recruit into NOW more guidance counselors, elementary through college level, to change the image now prevalent of counseling girls into “safe” fields, rather than into more challenging ones. We also believe that NOW should provide speakers to work towards this end.

Resolution 6:

In order to implement our judgements on the effectiveness of government bureaus and of our elected officials in serving the needs of working women, we urge that NOW appoint ARCHIVISTS to search the voting and committee records of elected officials and government bureaus whose work affects working women.

We urge that their findings of fact be briefly tabulated and widely disseminated. These could be sent out just before elections to each elected official’s constituency, to NOW chapters, which would then inform all women’s organizations willing to publicize the data among their membership. Similar action could be taken at time of appointment of officials and other strategic times.

This action would be possible with our presently existing membership. It would have immediate impact on Capitol Hill when it was observed that our workers were tabulating this data on our elected representatives.It would have a salutary effect on the voting of our representatives who vote our way in Washington and talk another way when back at home campaigning.

It would make it possible for us to stiffen up our own spines to cross party lines in voting and working for candidates, when confronted with their actual tabulated voting records.

It would make us influential far beyond the numbers of our membership in enforcing more favorable legislation for working women, both on the national and the state level if we have archivists both in Washington and in state capitals.

Resolution 7:

Incorporate and continue to work on the Equal Employment Task Force report adopted last year.

Resolution 8:

Urge the U.S. Civil Rights Commission to include the word “sex” in the study it is doing on discrimination.

Resolution 9:

Write a letter to the appropriate government official or agency urging them to undertake the study of restrictive laws affecting women workers recommended by the President’s Commission on the Status of Women in 1963 immediately and asking for an explanation of why it has not been done. This letter should probably go to the President, Labor Department, Women’s Bureau, etc.