Why every woman in America should beware of welfare
Welfare is the ultimate security policy for every woman in America.
Like accident or life insurance, you hope youíll never need it. But for
yourself and your family, sisters, daughters and friends, you need to know
it's there. Without it, we have no real escape from brutal relationships
or any protection in a job market hostile to women with children. Why is
Congress trying to take it away?
Ten Facts most American donít
know about welfare.
Only 6% of welfare mothers are teenagers. Less than 3% of poor families
are headed by women younger than 19.
The typical welfare family includes a mother and two children, about the
same as the average American family.
Welfare mothers on average receive $367 a month, even with food stamps
worth $295, this is still 31% below the poverty line for a family of three.
Benefits have about about a third of their value since 1979.
Welfare to single mothers makes up just 1% of the federal budget--3% if
food stamps are included,
Thirty-eight percent of AFDC parents are white, 37% are African-American,
and 18% are Latino.
Over 70% of women applying for welfare receive benefits for less than two
years; only 8% remain over eight years.
More than 60% of AFDC families have a child younger than six. Forty
percent have a child younger than two.
Full-time, year-round work at minimum wage puts a woman and two children
$3,000 below the poverty line-with no health care coverage.
Unemployment hat steadily increased since World War II, while unemployment
benefits have decreased.
Carefully conducted research has found that AFDC benefits do not influence
a never-married mother's decision to have a child; nor do they influence
mothers already on welfare to have additional children.
A war against poor women is a war against all women.
--from a paid advertisement in the New York Times, 8/8/95.
Cosponsored by 1199 National Health & Human Service
Employees Union, National Association of Social Workers, Coalition of Labor
Union Women, Catholics for a Free Choice, American Postal Workers Union,
AFL-CIO, Office & Professional Employees International Union AFL-CIO,
Welfare Reform Network of New York, Ms. Foundation for Women, Feminist
Majority, Wider Opportunities for Women, Women & Poverty Project, Communications
Workers of America, Democratic Socialists of America, Women's Actions for
New Directions, National Committee on Pay Equity, United Farm workers of
America AFL-CIO, Center for Women Policy Studies, National Council for
Research on Women, National Jobs for All Coalition, National Coalition
for the Homeless, NOW Legal Defense & Education Fund.
Welfare concerns every
Welfare is a feminist issue because:
a) it concerns primarily women and children
b) it is about the value of womenís work, about the dignity of women
C) it says a lot about how we, as a country, care for children
d) it is not just about mothers and not just about poor people
e) it is about women as persons
The welfare debate incorporates many dominant cultural ideas about women
Racist stereotype: a young black woman, never-married, with six
or more children.
As many white women on welfare as black (not all from poor backgrounds)
Average size of female headed family has been decreasing since the 1960s
and is now at 2.9 - one woman and 1.9 children
More than 40% of welfare mothers have only ONE child
Average length of time on welfare is two years
Until recently most welfare mothers were formerly married. There has been
an increase in never married. Is marriage really the answer to the problems?
AFDC is only 1% of the national budget
Welfare payments are only a fraction of the nationally established poverty
level; the average payment is $367 per month.
Foster mothers are paid from 3 to 8 times what a woman is given in AFDC
benefits to care for her own child.
It costs taxpayers $200 per day (and anywhere from $27,000 to 75,000 per
year) to keep a young criminal in jail.
It costs taxpayers anywhere from $38,000 to 60,000 per year to keep a child
in an orphanage.
Why, then, are we so unwilling to help women support their children?
A major reason women resort to welfare is non-payment of child support
by fathers. AFDC could be imagined as a subsidy of fathers, not a hand-out
to mothers. Why isnít it?
Child care is expensive and often inadequate or non-existent.
Many women want to stay home with their infants and toddlers; this option
should be available to all--not just the rich with husbands to support
them,. It is important for children and their mothers. Part time work options
should be available along with income supplements.
--original handout by Carol Delaney, Professor
of Anthropology, Stanford
Facts on Domestic Violence
Domestic violence is defined as abuse committed against an adult or
fully emancipated minor who is a spouse, former spouse, cohabitant, former
cohabitant, or a person with whom the suspect has had a child or has or
has had a dating or engagement relationship.
In 1990, 195,019 domestic violence cases were reported to the police
in California. Of these, 7,781 were reported in Santa Clara County.
(Bureau of Criminal Statistics, Sacramento, CA, 1991.)
Domestic violence is the most prevalent violent crime in California,
with law enforcement agencies receiving 500 reports every day. Yet, even
the FBI estimates these reports underesti-mate actual cases by one-tenth.
(California Alliance Against Domestic Violence, April, 1991.)
According to the FBI, as many as 6 million women are abused by their
partners each year. A woman is battered every 15 seconds. (The California
NOW Activist. November, 1991.)
One out of every two Amen can women will be physically abused at some
time in her relationship lifetime. (The Battered Woman's Survival
Battering is the major cause of serious injury to women in America,
more than auto accidents, muggings and rapes combined. (The Lipman
Report, The American Epidemic of Violence: A Major Security Concern and
Public Health Care Problem, December 15, 1985.)
Among all female victims of murders that police reported to the Uniform
Crime Report in 1989, 28% were believed to have been slain by husbands
or boyfriends. (U.S. Dept. of Justice, Female Victims of Violent
Crime. January, 1991.)
Women were victims of violent intimates at a rate 3 times that of men.
Women were 6 times more likely than men to be victimized by a spouse, ex-spouse,
boyfriend, or girlfriend. (U.S. Dept. of Justice, Female Victims
of Violence Crime. January, 1991.)
A study by the March of Dimes reports that one of every twelve women
is battered while she is pregnant. Battered women are four times more likely
to have low birthweight babies and twice as likely to miscarry compared
with normal mothers. (The Battered Woman's Survival Guide, 1990.)
Mid-Peninsula Support Network for Battered Women (415) 940-7855 24-hr. hotline
Women & Art
51.2% of all artists
in the U.S. are women 
30.7% of all photographers are women 
90% of all artist's models are women 
67% of bachelor degrees in Fine Arts go to women 
46% of bachelor degrees in Photography go to women 
65% of bachelor degrees in Painting go to women 
60% of MFAs in Fine Arts go to women 
55% of MFAs in Painting go to women 
47% of MFAs in Photography go to women 
59% of Ph.D.s in Fine Arts go to women.
66.5% of Ph.D.s in Art History go to women.
59% of trained artists and art historians are women.
33% of art faculty are women.
5% of works in museums are by women.
17% of works in galleries are by women.
26% of artists reviewed in art periodicals are women.
Women artists' income is 30% that of male artists'.
30% of Guggenheim grants go to women.
42% of $5,000 NEA grants go to women.
33% of $10,000 NEA grants go to women.
29% of $15,000 NEA grants go to women.
25% of $25,000 NEA grants go to women.
Of the art commissioned by the Department of Cultural Affairs Percent for
Art Program in New York City, 70% have been artists of color, 41% women,
39% of the 41% women of color.
Of the 1992 New York Foundation for the Arts awards given, women received
53.4%, men received 46.6%.
Of the world's top 200 collectors, approximately 128 are male, 52 are male-female
couples, and 20 are female.
7 of 36 one-person museum exhibitions in the 1991-92 New York season were
 1990 Statistical Abstract of the United States.
 Eleanor Dickenson, "Gender Discrimination in the Art World,"
paper prepared for the College Art Association, Coalition of Women, Februarv
15,1990, New York.
 U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education
 Devorab L Knoff, unpublished manuscript.
 Art in America1991-92.
 Guerrilla Girls poster, New York, 1991.
 Women's Caucus for Art, Moore College of Art Fact Sheet,
citing Rosentt Browes, 1989.
 Artnews, cover article, Januarv 1992, pp.79-91.
 Department of Cultural Affairs, Percent for Art, 1992.
 New York Foundation for the Arts. 1992.
Women & Prison
In the past decade, the female prison population has grown by 202%, the
male by 112%.
There are 17 times more men than women in prison.
73% of women in prison are under 30 years of age.
66% of women in prison were unemployed before incarceration.
92% of women in prison had less than a $10,000 yearly income.
58% of women in prison have less than a 12th-grade education.
54% of women in prison are women of color.
Over 80% of women in prison are mothers.
1 in 4 women entering prison is pregnant or has recently given birth.
The percentage of women who give birth while in prison has been estimated
at 9%. However, the thousands of statistics published by the U.S. Department
of Justice include no information on prison births.
New York is the only state that allows infants to stay in a prison nursery
with their mothers.
In the U.S. there are 48,000 women in state and federal prisons and another
42,000 in city and county jails, totaling 90,000 women in prison.
The imprisonment of women has left an estimated 167,000 children without
Women in prisons and jails are diagnosed with HIV infection at twice the
rate of their male counterparts.
Of the women incarcerated in New York, 80% are mothers, 80% have substance
abuse problems, 30% are homeless, and over 25% are HIV positive.
Doctors are available to women in prison 2 days a week versus 5 days a
week for men.
5-10% of women in prison have VD or gynecological problems, though there
are no gynecologists available for female inmates.
The federal prison system's only hospital for women, in Lexington, Kentucky,
does not employ a full-time obstetrician-gynecologist.
Mood-altering drugs are prescribed 2-3 times more often for women in prison
than for men.
Prison terms for killing husbands is twice as long as for killing wives.
60% of all women in federal prisons have been convicted of drug-related
offenses. Estimates of the number that are indirectly drug related are
64% of women in prison are drug users, and 68% of these used drugs daily
One study found that 93% of the women who had killed their mates had been
battered by them; 67% indicated the homicide resulted from an attempt to
protect themselves and their children.
Of 2,589 death-row inmates in the U.S., 41 are women, and over a third
of the women are lesbians.
10% of street gangs are girls; there are an estimated 7,000 girl gang members
in the U.S.
 "An Unequal Justice," New York Times, July 10, 1992
 National Coalition for Jail Reform, Washington D.C.
 "Women: The Road Ahead," Time, Special Issue,
 U.S. Department of Justice Bureau of Statistics, 1988
 Anne Campbe3ll, "The Girl in the Gang," cited in June Stephenson,
Are Not Cost Effective: Male Crime in America, Diemer Smith Publishing,
 "20/20," ABC-TV, August 4, 1992
 "Dykes on Death Row," Village Voice, October 5, 1992
 "U.S. Prisons Challenged by women behind Bars," New York
Times, November 30, 1992
 Jean Harris, "The Babies of Bedford," New York Times Magazine,
March 28, 1993
 "Hoppier Home," Women's Prison Association, New York, 1992.
I. % of Women in U.S. Paid Workforce by ethnicity/race
All White Black Hispanic Asian Amer/ % Married [total]
1890 Pacific Islander 4.6
1900 21.2 40.7
1950 29.1 23.8
1960 38 48
1970 43 50
1980 51.1 52 53.6 47.8 57.7 50.1
1992 57 57.8 58 52.6 sp. pres/abs div wid
1995 58.9 61.1 /62 73.7 17.5
1996 59.3 59.1 60.4 53.4
II. Some International Comparisons c. 1990
Country % of Women in #Children/ % of paid labor Europe, 1995
Labor Force mother force that is female % women in labor force
Algeria 7 7
China 55 2.3 Italy: 34
Denmark 72 1.5 France: 48
India 30 5.0 England:53
S. Africa 46 5.1 Sweden: 59
USA 56 1.8
former USSR 40
Latin America 30
South Asia 20
III. Occupational Segregation in the U.S.Occupation % Female1970
Chemist 17 29 managerial 35.6 48.0
Lawyer 6 27 professional 49.1 52.9
Engineer 3 27
Nurse 91 94
Secretary 98 98
Teacher 74 74
IV. Wage Gap: Women's Median Annual Earnings
as % of Men's (full time), for U.S.
1990 average earnings in manufacturing
jobs, women^Òs as % of men^Òs:
Sri Lanka 88%
Hong Kong 70
U.S. 1993 wage ratio of females to white males
wage ratios of males to
white malesWhite 70.8 Black 63.7 74.0
Hispanic 53.9 64.8
Ratio of median annual earnings by educational level, 1993
white male 100 100
black male 75 83
white female 71 73
black female 60 69