What if Washington prioritized moms, kids, and families?
where we are today
Moms continue to be undervalued and underpaid and are at a higher poverty risk. 35% of single moms are raising their families in poverty. Childcare is frequently low quality, unaffordable, and inconvenient.
WHERE WE NEED TO BE
100% of kids have access to quality childcare, there is no wage gap between men and women, and no mom or kid lives in poverty.
HOW WE GET THERE:
Let’s protect the fundamental rights of moms, kids, and families so that everyone can thrive. If FDR could put people on the moon, we can take care of our nation’s moms — help them take care of their children, help them secure financial security today, and help them prepare for retirement.
As Senator, I would form a Moms Moonshot Coalition of 7-10 people with leaders from the Departments of Defense, Labor, and Treasury, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and leaders in nonprofits like Chamber of Mothers, New America, and Moms First. They would have the budget and authority to drive a Moms-and-Kids agenda that would work towards accomplishing the following items.
Step one: Provide access to quality child care for everyone, everywhere.
- Create a directly-funded, public childcare option that improves quality of care for kids, offers better wages and conditions for workers, and creates more choices in low-income neighborhoods.
- Owner: Department of Defense (based on track record of similar success)
Step two: Close the wage gap and fight for women in the workplace.
- Guarantee paid family leave and 16-week medical leave for all parents, regardless of gender. This can be made possible by productivity gains powered by AI — one of the ways AI can make the workplace MORE human.
- Enact the Paycheck Fairness Act at a federal level, including banning the use of salary history questions in the hiring process and promoting reasonable geographic inputs to determine fair wages based on varied costs of living.
- Raise the federal minimum wage (currently $7.25) and eliminate the tipped minimum wage (currently $2.13). Women are more likely to earn at or below the minimum wage and represent two-thirds of tipped minimum wage earners, according to the National Women’s Law Center. They also find that in states without tipped minimum wages, women fare drastically better.
- Owner: Department of Labor
Step three: Develop a Permanent Expanded Child Tax Credit.
- Take learnings from July–December 2021, when U.S. parents of young children received between $250 and $350 a month per child. One study found the expanded tax credit reduced child poverty by almost 30%. And an advocacy organization found that the tax credit reduced financial anxiety for 77% of the parents and that 90% of parents said the payments were “helpful” or made a “huge difference” for their family.
- Owner: Department of Treasury
Step four: Improve access to health care including mental health care.
- Maintain and protect the mental health coverage made available through the Affordable Care Act.
- Expand mental health care access to low-income women through Medicaid. A pre-pandemic report found that “11.5% of new mothers in the US from 2015-2018 were uninsured; among those, about 20% chose to forgo needed medical care due to cost.” This must be addressed.
- Owner: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS)