WASHINGTON – Federally Employed Women (FEW) issued its Legislative Agenda for the 112th Congress, as well as the results of a membership survey on the top three legislative goals for the organization this year. FEW members are pursuing positive legislative changes that will impact federally employed women in particular and federal workers in general. “We turned directly to our members to determine which issues were most important to them as federal employees,” stated Sue Webster, FEW’s National President. “We look forward to working with the new Congress, and its 100+ freshmen members, on educating them about these issues and obtaining their support,” Webster added.
The organization’s three top legislative goals for this year are:
1. Enactment of the Equal Rights Amendment which would provide full legal equality for women under the United States Constitution;
2. Enactment of a Paycheck Fairness Bill that will provide women the needed tools to achieve equal pay in all workplaces; and
3. Fighting anti-federal worker legislation, such as mandatory furloughs and layoffs, which will seriously impact the services provided to and counted on by all Americans each and every day; and dispelling myths about federal pay and benefits.
FEW’s members will also be conducting an Advocacy Day in mid-May. This will allow constituents to meet directly with their legislators and their staffs to discuss the critical issues.
“FEW has already developed an active grassroots advocacy program and beginning immediately we will be aggressively working to achieve these goals,” advised Matthew Fogg, FEW’s National Vice President for Congressional Relations. “We are striving to send at least 2,000 letters this year from our members to their Capitol Hill legislators,” Fogg added.
The FEW Legislative Agenda is broken out into three tiers. Tier I are those issues that directly impact federally employed women the most and which FEW members most actively work on through their advocacy efforts. This includes the top legislative goals as well as other issues such as Paid Parental Leave, retirement benefits and affirmative employment. Tier II issues are those which impact all federal workers such as worker safety and health and whistleblower protection. Tier III are legislative issues that impact women in general and includes women’s health care issues; and economic empowerment.
“Copies of this Agenda, as well as the fact sheets on our top legislative issues, are being delivered to every legislator’s office on Capitol Hill,” advised Janet Kopenhaver, FEW’s Washington Representative. “It is important for all lawmakers to know the views of federal workers because every legislator can claim active or retired federal workers as constituents.” (NOTE: Last week FEW released new employment statistics detailing how many federal workers and retirees live in each county and then compiled by congressional district and state. Follow this link to view the map: http://eyeonwashington.com/few_map_2010/index.html) Over the next few months, Kopenhaver will be meeting with new Members of Congress, as well as other key legislators and their staffs to discuss FEW’s Legislative Agenda and legislative goals.
FEW is a private, non-profit organization founded in 1968 after Executive Order 11375 was issued that added sex discrimination to the list of prohibited discrimination in the federal government. FEW has grown into a proactive organization serving over one million federally employed women – both in the military and civilian workforce.