NC Women Matter is a non-partisan coalition of 30 women’s organizations from across North Carolina who have joined together to assure that the voices and concerns of women, children, and families are heard in the November election. Women are over 54% of the registered voters in this state. This number should assure that women’s concerns are at the top of the priority list of individuals running for elected office. This majority should also assure that once elected, officials will listen to and vote the majority concern. And yet, in recent years, the concerns of women and families have fallen victim to an ideological agenda that has not always been in the best interests of women or families.
Women are at the heart of the economy in North Carolina. Over 2.3 million women are in North Carolina’s labor force. Three out of four mothers with children under the age of 18 are in the labor force. Almost 50% of working mothers are the family’s exclusive breadwinner. Despite the fact that women are the majority registered voters, state policy makers have cut deeply into critical programs for women. The impact of the economic downturn has been worse for women and children.
The state budget cut nearly $1 billion from education funding deeply impacting North Carolina’s public schools, community colleges and universities. Layoffs of teachers and teaching assistants at every level have disproportionately impacted women.
Early childhood programs have been cut close to $70 million, making it much more difficult for mothers to stay in the labor market.
Medicare, which serves more women than men, was cut by over $700 million in the past two state budgets.
In addition to these, there are many other issues of concern that require that the woman’s voice be heard in the up-coming election. Among them: support for programs to prevent domestic violence and to support the victims of domestic violence; the freedom for women to make their own health care decisions without interference from state and local governments. Women are concerned about the environment. Voter ID laws disproportionately impact older women who tend to give up their drivers licenses sooner than men.
All of this and much more demands that women get actively involved in the November election. So NC Women Matter is sending hand-written letters to registered women voters across the state, informing them of what is at stake in the up-coming election and urging women to vote in their interest and that of their children and families. Thousands of woman-to-woman letters have already been sent and thousands more are coming. NC Women Matter will be calling registered women voters in the fall, once again urging them to vote. The Majority voice must be heard in the November election.
You can find out more about NC Women Matter and volunteer to be a part of its efforts by going to their web site – www.ncwomenmatter.org.