Women in Michigan deserve better. From employment laws, healthcare benefits, and reproductive rights to a culture and history that furthers that discrimination and harassment, women face barriers that we must remove. Women, and particularly women of color, are still not guaranteed equal pay for equal work, we continue to restrict the control they have over their own bodies, and very little is being done to ensure that a culture of sexual harassment and assault is no longer commonplace. In the State Senate, I will fight for increased gender equality, continuing my record of supporting women's rights and my female colleagues.
As state representative, I co-sponsored legislation on equal pay and compensation-disclosure laws allowing workers to determine if they were paid on par with peers - trying to close the average gap of 82 cents on the dollar (and addressing the fact that the gap is even wider for women of color - 54 cents on the dollar for Lantinx women and 63 for Black women). I co-sponsored bills in the House Democrats "Prevention First Package," in support of access to contraception and health care for women. I authored legislation---as part of that Prevention First Package---to end abstinence-only programs and require sex education to be comprehensive and medically accurate. I was an active member in the Progressive Women's Caucus, helping to recruit and support female leaders. And I was named as the co-Chair of the House Democrats Women's Issues Task Force. With that group, I traveled Michigan co-hosting town halls with Rep. Marcia Hovey-Wright on access to women's reproductive health services and a broad range of family care issues. The Progressive Women's Caucus gave me a unique award for my advocacy, and as our next State Senator, I would continue fighting for equality by:
- Standing up to attacks on reproductive justice and protecting the right to choose
- Sponsoring or co-sponsoring laws requiring equal pay
- Supporting strict rules against workplace harassment or assault
- Requiring health care laws to cover women's health as essential benefits
- Continuing to recruit and support female colleagues