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Business and Economic Development (BED) Policy Committee

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A RESOLUTION TO PROMOTE INCREASING EDUCATIONAL, ECONOMIC, AND ENTR PRENEURIAL OPPORTUNITIES FOR WOMEN AND GIRLS OF COLOR


WHEREAS, the National Black Caucus of State Legislators (NBCSL) maintains that American women of color are strong, resilient and dedicated to their families and communities, and are an essential part of our national economic and social fabric; 

WHEREAS, women of color are robust participants in the labor force, with black women more likely to participate in the labor force at 61.1 percent; Hispanic women at 58.7 percent, and Asian women at 58 percent; 

WHEREAS, out of 12 million single-parent families in 2015, more than 80 percent were headed by single mothers; 

WHEREAS, women of color are often the primary family breadwinners: particularly among black families, were 74 percent of black mothers are the primary breadwinners;  

WHEREAS, the median income for a family headed by a single working mother was about $26,000 in 2013, a third of the median income for a married couple;  

WHEREAS, women of color earn far less than white males with Black women earning 66.2 percent of what white males earn and Hispanic women only 56.5 percent; 

WHEREAS, nearly half of households with young children that are headed by Black or Hispanic single women live in poverty; 

WHEREAS, entrepreneurship has the ability to close the economic disparities that exist for women of color; 

WHEREAS, nearly five million U.S. businesses are owned by women of color, employ two million workers and generate $344 billion in revenues; 

WHEREAS, despite their growing numbers, small businesses owned by women of color still face challenges like access to capital, lack of investment, race and gender bias, and slower growth;  

WHEREAS, African American and African Immigrant girls are suspended from school at six times the rate of White girls; 

WHEREAS, Black girls represent 14 percent of the U.S. population but comprise 32 percent of those detained and committed; and

WHEREAS, Native American girls make up only 1 percent of the population but 3.5 percent of those detained and committed. 

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the National Black Caucus of State Legislators (NBCSL) support a multi-pronged approach to increase opportunities for women and girls of color to succeed and prosper—in school, in the workforce, and in small business ownership; 

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that NBCSL support increasing the academic success of girls of color, leading to reduced school suspensions, increased on-time high school graduation rates, and pursuit of post-secondary education; 

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that NBCSL support encouraging girls of color to explore and pursue STEM careers;  

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that NBCSL support educating women and girls of color in financial literacy and entrepreneurship; 

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that NBCSL support increasing the number of women of color in high-wage, high demand, nontraditional jobs—the skilled trades and STEM occupations—through job skills training and apprenticeships; 

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that NBCSL support small business loans and technical assistance to businesses owned by women of color.

BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED, that NBCSL send a copy of this resolution to the President of the United States, the Vice President of the United States, members of Congress, and other federal and state government officials as appropriate.

SPONSOR: Representative Rena Moran (MN)
Committee of Jurisdiction: Business and Economic Development Policy Committee
Certified by Committee Chair: Senator Jeffery Hayden (MN)
Ratified in Plenary Session: Ratification Date is December 3, 2016
Ratification is certified by: Senator Catherine Pugh (MD), President
 
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