Mothers and other unwaged primary caregivers are counted on for everyone’s survival, especially but not only during this pandemic, yet we are never included in relief/stimulus legislation. Instead, we’re disrespected, especially those of us on welfare or other benefits struggling the hardest to survive. Our economic contributions are hidden, so we keep working even when ill, and without financial means we can’t escape domestic violence and face having our children taken away, as poverty is treated as neglect.
But we too are essential workers making a fundamental social contribution to survival, health and the economy – we have earned our right to stimulus money! ● More healthcare is provided by unwaged caregivers than all healthcare institutions worldwide ● $470 billion is the value of unwaged caregiving for adults (not even including care for children) in the US (AARP) ● 34 billion hours per day is how much women & girls spend on caregiving work worldwide ● $143,000 a year is what US moms would earn if we were paid for all the jobs we do, with overtime, according to Salary.com ● Yet, women & children are 73% of the poor in the US ● There is plenty of money: The US has 607 billionaires; the top eight richest billionaires own as much combined wealth as “half the human race”. The US military budget keeps rising and pays for bases all over the world… It’s about time caregivers are prioritized not only in the US but worldwide. This helps ensure health everywhere.
Full list of demands here • Take Action: Tweet at Congress & share on social media • Sign & Share our Petition
Share graphics below with accompanying text, adapting to your situation. To find Twitter handles, email addresses and phone numbers for your own Representatives and Senators, go to tweetcongress.org/tweeters
FOR TWITTER: Money 4 Mothers & Other Caregivers must be in every Stimulus Bill! https://bit.ly/Money4Caregivers #Money4Caregivers #CareIncomeNow #ChildBenefitNow @SpeakerPelosi @SenSchumer @McConnellPress @senatemajldr @RepGwenMoore @RepKarenBass @repmarkpocan @RepJayapal @AOC @RepLawrence
FOR FACEBOOK: Money for Mothers & Other Caregivers must be in every Stimulus Bill! https://bit.ly/Money4Caregivers #Money4Caregivers #CareIncomeNow #ChildBenefitNow @NancyPelosi @chuckschumer @mitchmcconnell @GwenSMoore @RepKarenBass @repmarkpocan @Pramila.Jayapal @OcasioCortez @Rep.BLawrence
More social media graphics below
While we were glad to see the child benefit of $500 per child under age 17 in the latest stimulus package, on top of $1200 in cash assistance per individual, that payment must be made ongoing rather than one time only.
As the House and Senate negotiate stimulus packages now and in the coming weeks, it is vital that they include measures to put money directly in the hands of unwaged caregivers who are on the frontlines of caring for our families, birthing and caring for children, doing the caring work every day that is essential to the survival of our families, communities, and the planet, through this and every disaster. As family and community caregivers we are the anchors and the lifeboats for our loved ones, children, the elderly those who are impoverished, disabled, in ill physical or mental health. Those of us who are immigrant, and/or Black or Brown, including Indigenous, are at greater risk. Increasingly mothers and our children are a large percentage of the homeless, and mothers are the fastest growing population of people being imprisoned.
If money doesn’t go directly to the primary caregiver, women will be put at even greater risk of domestic violence and will lack the means to escape it. Studies have shown that primary caregivers getting money directly is the best insurance that the money will benefit the entire family starting with children. Because unwaged caregivers are not now getting a paycheck does not mean we are not working!
Even as legislation is passed to send checks to people in the US, from what we understand, those who have not filed taxes or don’t have a Social Security number, meaning the most impoverished among us, will get nothing. According to the Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival, there are 140 million people in the US at or close to the poverty line, and 73% of them are women and our children.
Money for Mothers and our Children Continue reading
Adapt and post this email to each contact form or email below, and to your own Senators and Reps.
See action alert and background that you can draw on in your letter.
Dear Rep./Senator _________,
I am a [mother/grandmother/unwaged caregiver for….] and am deeply worried that the COVID-19 stimulus bills are not including us, even as we are being counted on to take on the massive work of keeping our families and communities together in the face of a health and economic crisis. Of course we love our families, but love does not pay the rent. The point is that it is vital that the stimulus proposals include measures to put money directly in the hands of unwaged caregivers such as myself who are on the frontlines, doing caring work every day that is essential to the survival of our families, communities, and the planet, through this and every disaster. Those who are immigrant, and/or people of color are at greater risk. And for those of us who are or may become victims of domestic violence we not only need access to shelters, but we urgently need cash assistance to help us and our children get out of danger.
In other western countries, governments pay a non-means tested child benefit or family allowance. We contribute $470 billion or more to the economy, according to AARP. We are working, we are workers, our work keeps all of society functioning. Where is the money that we and our children deserve? Continue reading
Personalize and post it together with the graphic, tagging each of the legislators below. Be sure to include the link and hashtags.
.@SpeakerPelosi Our communities’ survival depends on caregivers who are now unwaged during this crisis and beyond. Don’t leave us out of COVID-19 relief packages. Include an ongoing fully refundable child tax credit/child benefit now! https://bit.ly/CareIncomeNow #ChildBenefitNow #CareIncomeNow
Calling on all mothers, other caregivers & supporters to join a Virtual Social Media March on the Capitol
We demand another COVID‑19 stimulus package that includes money for unwaged caregivers and fully refundable child tax credits! The House & Senate must stay in session!
Tell them that the work of mothers and other unwaged caregivers caring for children, elders and those who are sick is counted on in this and every crisis, yet getting us the money and other resources we need is not being considered. For unwaged caregivers not to have access to money of our own drives us and our children deeper into poverty and destitution, and makes us vulnerable to domestic violence. Many of us are also doing low-waged caregiving work in the health care field on top of our unwaged work.
Sample tweet • Sample email • Background
Call issued by: Global Women’s Strike and Women of Color/GWS
East Coast: 215-848-1120 firstname.lastname@example.org
West Coast: 323-276-2833 email@example.com
or 415-626-4114 firstname.lastname@example.org
These questions were drafted for Pennsylvania State Senate and House Appropriations Committee Budget Hearings on the 2020 Budget for the Department of Human Services
Submitted by the PA Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival
Email • Website • Blog
National website: www.poorpeoplescampaign.org
For a copy of the Know Your Rights: What to do if your child is detained by DCFS handbook, see below. It will also be available in Spanish in January; call 323 276-9833 or email email@example.com
Know Your Rights: What to Do if Your Child is Detained by DCFS by EveryMotherNetwork on Scribd
Testimony from the Global Women’s Strike and Every Mother is a Working Mother Network in Support of the Community Safety and Health Amendment Act of 2019 at the Hearing of the Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety, October 17, 2019
My name is Vanette Jordan Lumogo and we are speaking in support of the Community Safety and Health Amendment Act on behalf of the Global Women’s Strike and Every Mother is a Working Mother Network, two networks that are pressing for a care income for mothers and other caregivers as a way to tackle inequality and poverty, driving forces behind prostitution.
And my name is Phoebe Jones. I’m a Quaker, have a PhD in physical education, and live in Philadelphia, although I was born and raised in Washington DC. “Mothers” and “sex workers” are not often put together. But the majority of sex workers are mothers, estimated at as high as 75-80%. This goes hand in hand with the statistic that 73-75% of the poor in the US are women and children, disproportionately women and children of color.
Prostitution is a survival strategy to deal with that poverty as well as discrimination, lack of pay equity, domestic violence, debt, high cost of living, low wages, unemployment, exploitation, homelessness and lack of support for caregiving for children and elders. When one in 25 families in the US live on 2 dollars a day, when 20% of families are on food stamps, when welfare reform and other measures have shredded what is left of the safety net, and when single mothers are consistently the poorest, it’s not surprising that so many women faced with no or few viable alternatives resort to prostitution to survive, feed their kids, and put a roof over our heads. It’s shocking that some women’s organizations are opposing this legislation which would stop so many low-income women from going to prison, disproportionately women of color including trans, immigrant and young women. Where were those organizations when welfare for single mothers was being cut? Why haven’t they been fighting for payment for the 40 million unpaid family caregivers taking care of loved ones? We join with sex workers who say Outlaw Poverty, Not Prostitutes.