Women, unique creations of God, are one of the incomparable beings and the problems encountered by them are manifold and intricate. In a society packed with inequalities and injustice it is impossible to fight against all odds unassisted. National Organization for Women (NOW), established on June 30, 1966 in Washington, D.C fights for her equality. It addresses a lot of issues concerning women such as abortion rights, health issues, racial discrimination and violence against her. In addition, it promotes public policies to address the issues and accelerate economic development of women. Furthermore, these organizations examine and review, from time to time, the various issues faced by women and work towards eradicating them by putting into practice various measures and policies.
Paid leave policy
This policy allows 12 weeks of job protected unpaid leave to women employees to help handle problems related to medical illness, new born care or other personal reasons. By default care giving becomes one of the primary responsibilities of women; hence the need for paid leave becomes very important. Medical insurance act allows women to get partially paid allowing her to balance work and family. International labor organization advocates 14 weeks of leave paying two thirds of her previous earnings.
Caregiver credit act
Introduced recently, this act takes into account women’s unpaid care giving work like taking care of children and other dependents. This Caregiver Credit helps secure economic status at the time of retirement for women and thereby bringing in a positive change in the society. This Act takes the care giving years into consideration and the caregiver gets her payment after a period of time. Social Security Caregiver Credit Act (H.R. 5024) benefits the women who care for their families. It is a protective measure which lessens the inequality against women and focuses on providing a helping hand to millions of women. This policy is to honor women who honor their families.
The emergency contraception access and education act
This bill supports women’s reproductive justice, by educating her on the usage of Emergency contraception; in addition, it makes the emergency contraception easily available for her. This bill emphasizes the importance of providing emergency access to emergency contraception to the affected in sexual violence. Affordable care act will get a full range of approved contraceptives and counselling without co-pays. Furthermore, contraceptive methods include birth control patch, pills, ring, shot and IUD; at times it includes permanent or surgical contraception methods as well.
Pay check fairness act
Women comparatively get a lesser pay than men performing a similar role. Consequently, this act addresses the setbacks in pay discrimination. Discrimination occurs not only in gender but in race as well. A statistical study very clearly states that a working woman may incur a loss of $1 million in a 40 year career. This act collects and reviews details on comp pay, family leave polices and many more. An increase in the discrimination percentage still exists in spite of this act being passed decades ago.
Pregnancy discrimination act
This law stresses that pregnant woman should be treated the same as other employees who are similar in their ability or inability to work. Many organizations cut the benefits of women during the pregnancy. It is absolutely crucial to protect pregnant women at work. Most likely 75% women who are currently entering workforce might become pregnant and it is important to ensure that discrimination does not exist. Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (S. 942/H.R. 1975 – 113rd Congress forbids employers forcing pregnant woman from taking leave instead of providing accommodation. Additionally, Supreme Court has clearly stated that pregnant women have expanded rights under the Americans Disabilities Act.
Though we see a positive trend in the arena of education, sports, career, and social status in the last five years for women nonetheless we see greater issues emerging every day. Abortion is a crime in countries where 35% of the women live. Approximately 4500000 die during childbirth every year. Women from different walks of life and perhaps even from the developed countries do not have reproductive choices. 3 in 10 women go through physical and sexual violence at the time of pregnancy. Trafficking affects approximately 700000 victims. Furthermore, 2 in 10 women experience domestic violence in their lifetime and surprisingly, in some countries, domestic violence is still not a crime. Career women are forced to decide on when to have a child. Many women don’t know Abortion is legal and the entire society has a say on her reproductive rights. Problems of women are on the rise and only organizations like NOW assists the women to obtain their freedom in family and in society. Organizations like NOW come up with preventive measures to control the different issues that are on. NOW conducts a lot of programs like love your body campaign, global feminism activities, voter mobilization awareness and many more; these programs are extensively designed to Support, Encourage and Motivate women and is striving each day for the empowerment of Women. It is highly imperative to have more organizations like NOW to tackle the problems of the Modern Woman.