Newsletter - Spring 1999
Radcliffe Director to Discuss Women & Work in 21st Century
Guests Take Part In CWW Workshop
Paula M. Rayman, a specialist in work organization who is the Director of Radcliffe College's Public Policy Institute, will be the featured speaker on Friday, April 23, at a workshop of the Center for Women and Work (CWW). The program is called "Women and Work in the 21 st Century." It will run from 8:30a.m. to 2p.m. in Alumni Lounge, North Campus.
The other speakers on the invited panel that day include Paula Alexander of Eastman Gelatine; Sue Beaton of Enterprise Community; Sandra DiVincenzo, a Guidance Counselor at Chelmsford High School; Anita Moeller, Founder of Acre Family Daycare Corp; and Elisinia Nunez of the Massachusetts Coalition for Occupational Safety and Health (MASSCOSH).
They will speak about issues related to Work Organizations, City Government, Education, Community Activism, and Labor. A series of caucus groups will discuss issues raised by all of the speakers and report back to the conferees.
The workshop is the highlight of CWW's program this semester. It is supported by grants from the Council on Diversity and Pluralism and the UML Bookstore Committee.
All faculty, students, and invited guests are welcomed to attend at no cost but registration is required. RSVP before Friday, April 16, by contacting Joan Wrynn at Ext. 3255 or by e-mail at Joan_ Wrynn@uml.edu. A continental breakfast and lunch will be served.
Rayman has a doctorate in economics and sociology from Boston College. She is a former faculty member at Wellesley College and was director of the Women and Sciences Project at its Center for Research on Women.
The CWW is dedicated to improving work conditions and enhancing economic opportunities for women through research, education, and social action.
IWPR Research*: MA Working Women Make Median Pay of $28,808 a Year
The median annual earnings of working women in Massachusetts $28,808. In a ranking of states by that measure, Massachusetts occupies fifth place, behind Alaska (first at $31,380), the District of Columbia, Connecticut, and Maryland. The percentage of women in poverty in Massachusetts is 10.2%, ranking the state in 11th place by this measure.
The information was developed in research by the Institute for Women's Policy Research (IWPR) in Washington, DC, part of its effort "to establish baseline measures of the status of women in all 50 states and the District of Columbia." The research is described and results are presented at IWPR's web site: wwv.iwpr.org. The research is part of a larger project funded by the Ford Foundation.
The Status of Women in the States research examines data on employment and earnings, political participation, economic autonomy, and reproductive rights to establish a composite score for each state. Massachusetts' composite score was 4.42, which ranks it sixth overall in the country. The research also shows that 24.1% of women in Massachusetts have four or more years of college, ranking second among all states.
Other significant findings for Massachusetts and the corresponding state ranking follow:
Category % Rank
% of women without health insurance 10.8% 16
% of businesses that are women-owned 33.3% 31
Earnings ratio between women & men** 73.7% 15**
% of women in the labor force 60.8% 23
% employed women in managerial
or professional occupations 35.4% 3
(** Data is for full-time working wornen and men who are employed year-round)
By comparison, the median annual earnings for women in the U.S. is $24,909. The earnings ratio between wornen and men for the U.S. is 72.3%; 58.9% of all wornen are in the labor force, and 30.3% of all women are employed in managerial or professional occupations.
The first series of reports was released in 1996 and sources included both government agencies and other organizations. Reports are avalable by state for $10 each. Information is available at the web site.
General Meetings: Monday, May 3; check the list serve for place; the agenda will include followup discussion on the April Workshop and future planning.
Spring Workshop: Friday, April 23 (See story)
COPC Breakfast: Meg Bond and Jean Pyle will discuss the CWW at a community breakfast Tuesday, May 11, at 7:30 a.m. in the conference room at Wannalancit Mills; no registration required.
Program: Contact Meg Bond or Joan Wrynn
Outreach & Membership: Contact Ann Bratton or Mary Lee Dunn
Bond, Pyle Plan for Year 2
Drs. Meg Bond of Psychology and Jean Pyle of Regional Economic and Social Development have agreed to lead the Center for Women and Work (CWW) into a new academic year in the fall so as to bring to maturity much of the work begun during this last year.
A major emphasis, they said, will be on increasing funding -- particularly external grants -- for the CWW, establishing an Advisory Board, and developing the many programming ideas suggested during the 1998-'99 year. Two surveys done during this year -- of faculty and staff and other women's centers -- should impact those decisions in a decisive way, they said.
They also want to enlarge the base of participants in the work of the Center.
Bond and Pyle emphasized that the CWW is now better positioned to reach out with research and community action projects and perhaps to collaborate with other centers.
In addition, the CWW is weighing how to go about forming a policy committee that could issue commentary on matters of public consequence related to women and work through both the mass media and the CWW's own web site and publications.
Further, the directors plan to continue the general meeting discussion series; introduce a series of outside speakers; make and renew contacts with regional women's groups, unions, employers, community-based groups, and government officials; and affiliate with certain national women's organizations such as the National Council for Research on Women.
The CWW archive and library remain under development.
'Our Own Time' On WJUL Program
The Center for Women and Work presents a 5-minute spot on WJUL's (91.5 FM) public affairs program, "Thinking Out Loud," which airs weekly on Wednesdays from 9 to noon.
Anneta Argyres of Work Environment manages the presentation on behalf of the CWW and offers interviews, news for and about women, and features.
For the CWW, New Beginnings
The '98-'99 year has been a busy one as the Center for Women and Work developed both infrastructure and programming. The coming end of the school year is a good time to look back and survey the effort.
The CWW established these Standing Committees: Mission and Organizational Structure; Program Committee; Outreach, Networking, and Public Relations; Grants Support; and Office and Infrastructure.
The CWW conducted two surveys. One focused on UML faculty and staff to assess people's hopes for the CWW and to determine people's particular interests in research and writing, teaching and training, and community partnerships and outreach. The other canvassed selected women's centers in New England and the nation to determine what works and what doesn't and what already exists in the field.
The highlight of the second semester will be a workshop on April 23 which wili feature a talk by Paula Rayman, Director of Radcliffe's Public Policy Institute, and a panel of invited guest speakers (story, p. 1).
The CWW held a series of discussions each month addressing issues such as What Is Work?, Work and Family, Violence in the Workplace, and Lesbians and Gays in the Workplace.
The CWW is collaborating with the Lorin Kerr Ergonomics Institute to develop research to study the relationships between discrimination, stress, and health outcomes. With funding from the Committee on Industrial Theory Assessment, it is surveying women-owned businesses in Lowell in conjunction with the Center for Family, Work and Community and the Center for Industrial Competitiveness.
It also has provided Diversity Consultation and Training. In March, Cathy Crumbley, the manager of the Lowell Center for Sustainable Production who also is active in the CWW, represented both groups as a speaker at a Canadian conference on preventing cancer. The CWW plans to work with other groups to develop a Lowell-based selfsufficiency standard for families in the region.
The CWW held an Open House in December to introduce the campus to its new office in Dugan 212 on South Campus.
The CWW has developed these outreach mechanisms: a list-serve, logo, brochure, newsletter, web site, and spot on a weekly public affairs radio program on the campus station, WJUL (91.5 FM). It also is building a CWW library that includes some curriculum material as well as videos and books through a donations effort.
The CWW participated in the annual March Women's Week events and Co-Directors Meg Bond and Jean Pyle will be guest presenters on May 11 at a breakfast program at Wannalancit Mills sponsored by the Community Outreach Partnership Center.
The CWW has made connections with representatives of local cultural organizations as well.