DENVER (PRWEB) October 12, 2020
Just as registered voters in Colorado begin to receive their 2020 ballots, The Women’s Foundation of Colorado (WFCO) today released its 2020 nonpartisan ballot guide, The Womanifesto. As the only community foundation in the state focused exclusively on advancing and accelerating economic opportunity for Colorado women and their families, WFCO’s policy advocacy priorities are aligned with creating more equitable systems and eliminating root causes of poverty. Accordingly, in The Womanifesto, WFCO takes positions on five of the 11 statewide measures that have the greatest likelihood to impact Colorado women’s economic mobility.
Excerpts from The Womanifesto that explain WFCO’s positions are included below:
Amendment B: Repeal The Gallagher Amendment
WFCO Position: Support
“Local and state budgets are strained by the unintended consequences of the Gallagher Amendment to the Colorado Constitution. Adopted in 1982 to provide homeowners relief from rapidly rising property taxes, the constitutional requirements related to property taxes ended up limiting funding for schools and requiring the state budget to make up the difference in education funding. This leaves less money in the state budget for other priorities, including transportation, child care, housing, and other resources essential for women and families on the path to economic security.”
Proposition EE: Taxes on Nicotine Products
WFCO Position: Support
“This measure will establish an early care and education system in Colorado with diverse types of providers and care that meets the needs of all types of families and children. It also addresses the harmful impact of tobacco, nicotine, and vaping on Colorado’s teens. Additionally, we know that significant revenue will be needed to address the shortfall expected by the impact of COVID-19 on our economy.”
Proposition 115: Prohibit Abortions After 22 Weeks
WFCO Position: Oppose
“Research clearly links a person’s complete access to reproductive health to better economic security. WFCO has supported programs that fund access to family planning and opposed past ballot measures that would have impacted access to abortions. WFCO supports access to the full range of reproductive health care, information, and justice for women statewide. We believe that women have the right to decide to have or not to have children, free from stigma. This measure infringes on that right and takes away every Colorado women’s ability to make the medical decisions that are best for their own circumstances.”
Proposition 116: State Income Tax Rate Reduction
WFCO Position: Oppose
“This measure would reduce state General Fund revenue by an estimated $158.4 million in FY 2020-21 and nearly $170 million the following year, based on nonpartisan analysis by Legislative Council staff. A decrease in the income tax rate would require additional cuts to an already depleted state budget and further restrict investments in essential community resources for women and their families, such as child care, affordable housing, and transportation.”
Proposition 118: Paid Family and Medical Leave Insurance Program
WFCO Position: Support
“Access to paid family and medical leave means more women can remain in the workforce, caregiving responsibilities can be shared more equitably, more families can meet their basic needs, employers can retain talent and reduce costs, and economic activity increases. The advantages of paid leave extend to all family members.”
The Womanifesto was written by WFCO policy experts and more than 60 diverse individuals from across the state reviewed the guide. The community resource is available to download at http://www.wfco.org. It will be available in Spanish by October 15.
“The Womanifesto is a community resource to help voters understand how they can vote with women in mind, and as a result, strengthen opportunities for our entire state,” said Lauren Y. Casteel, president and CEO. “COVID-19 and the subsequent she-cession - where women of color have been disproportionately affected because of job losses, negative health outcomes, and wealth gaps - brought with them a laser-sharp focus on the inequity of our current systems. We stand for accessible and affordable child care, housing, transportation, health care, and other essential resources for all Colorado women to thrive.”
The Women’s Foundation of Colorado implements research, policy advocacy, and grantmaking to pave more pathways to economic security for the 2.8 million women and girls who call Colorado home. Its most recent research, Women’s Economic Realities in Colorado, found that nearly 6 in 10 of nearly all minimum wage workers in Colorado are women and are more likely to be women of color. Additionally, while women are the co- or sole-breadwinners in 45 percent of households in Colorado, a family headed by a female householder only earns 72 percent of the earnings of a family headed by a male householder.
Along with its annual grantmaking through its WAGES (Women Achieving Greater Economic Security) program, The Foundation granted $782,500 to nonprofits statewide earlier this year as part of its Women and Families of Colorado Relief Fund (WFCO Relief Fund). The grants helped provide safe shelter, food, and other essentials for women with children, women in rural communities, transgender women, and women experiencing homelessness or escaping domestic violence.
The release of The Womanifesto in 2020 falls on the 100-year anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment that allowed some women the right to vote. It would take the passage of The Voting Rights Act of 1965 to prohibit racial discrimination in voting.
“A goal of issuing The Womanifesto is to eliminate barriers to voting,” said Casteel. “Ballot issues are complex and this year there are 11 statewide measures. We hope The Womanifesto is a helpful resource for those who want to strengthen opportunities for women and their families and are looking for nonpartisan information to help them fill out their ballots.”
Unlike most other states, Colorado allows voter registration through election day – November 3, 2020.
ABOUT THE WOMEN’S FOUNDATION OF COLORADO
The Women’s Foundation of Colorado is the only statewide community foundation dedicated to creating more pathways to prosperity for Colorado women through the power of community, philanthropy, and impact. Since 1987, WFCO has served as an essential partner, resource, voice, and catalyst in strengthening Colorado’s families, communities, and economy through the power of women. In its 33-year history, WFCO has funded dozens of research reports that identify the systemic barriers that keep women from earning a livable wage, helped pass key legislation that to spur women’s economic advancement, and granted more than $19 million to nonprofits that work with women and families in communities statewide. For more information, please visit http://www.wfco.org.