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Feminist News


January-28-97

Study Reveals Amount of Money Women Need to Get Off Welfare

A coalition of women's groups have presented legislators with a study conducted by the Wider Opportunities for Women group which analyzes the amount of money women need in order to successfully escape from welfare. The study was conducted using U.S. Department of Housing and Urban development data and child-care cost surveys. In urban California, women must find jobs that pay two or three times the minimum wage. For example, in Los Angeles, to meet housing, child care, transportation and medical needs, a woman with one young child needs to earn $13.07 an hour to cover expenses. Depending on the age of the children, a woman in Los Angeles with two children would have to make anywhere from $13.42 to $17.10 an hour to cover similar expenses. The coalition of women's groups are urging that the government use the study to devising job and training programs for the millions of women on welfare who will be required to move from government assistance into the workplace. Irma Herrera of the San Francisco based Equal Rights Advocates commented that if women do not have the training necessary for jobs that pay enough to meet a familys basic needs, families will only be pushed further and further into poverty. Approximately 85% of adults on welfare are women.

Media Resources: The Los Angeles Times - January 28, 1997]