Please enter a search term to begin your search.
The Maine Women's Advocate
Under the Dome Summer 2012
The 2012 legislative session has been an exceedingly challenging one for Maine women and their families. To quote our testimony regarding the Governor’s budget “women are wearing the bullseye” and we remain in crosshairs as the current administration implements the most recent legal changes. The Summer 2012 newletter includes our 2012 Legislative Roll Call on the bills that matter to Maine women and girls.
Download: Summer 2012
Under the Dome Summer 2011
Despite navigating an entirely new Legislature with hundreds (HUNDREDS) of bills aimed at decimating existing legal protections serving women and girls, we were able to defend Maine’s progress by joining forces with our allies to craft bipartisan consensus on critical bills. Our Summer 2011 newsletter offers a comprehensive roundup of the Maine Women’s Lobby’s during the legislative session.
Download: Summer 2011
With the election of Paul LePage as Maine’s next Governor comes a dramatic shift in the legislative landscape. Some of Governor-Elect LePage’s public positions—on reproductive choice, marriage equality, economic development, health care, and education—are, simply put, out of touch with the realities of women’s lives. And, over the next four years, Governor LePage could move Maine in a radically different direction. But, Maine can’t afford to move backwards. The success and well-being of all Maine people depends on policymaking that honors wise investments, equal opportunity, and shared prosperity. So, while we’ll undoubtedly be opposing some of the most extreme initiatives—such as efforts to restrict access to TANF and Medicaid for those who need it most, restrictions on reproductive privacy, and attempts to eliminate regulations aimed at reducing employment discrimination—we’ll also be continuing to put forward policy solutions that have broad support in the electorate. You can count on us to keep women’s voices front and center in the many difficult debates to come. ( Download…)
Everybody gets sick at one time or another, from the common cold. But right now, without access to paid sick days, not all of us can afford to get well. For those without paid sick days, the choices are to stay home from work and risk needed pay or even discipline at work go to work sick ( Download…)
At the close of another busy legislative session, we celebrated passage of several bills that addressed vital issues facing women and their families. In particular, we were proud to advance three major bills to help decrease discrimination. “An Act To Ensure Fair Pay” (L.D. 84) addresses a shortcoming of existing state law by explicitly stating that employees have the right to discuss salary information when seeking to enforce their right to equal pay. ( Download…)
Economic Picture Colors Lobby’s Legislative Agenda In the face of a long and deep recession, women and men across the State face extreme economic anxiety. So far, layoffs have been concentrated in male-dominated industries, such as construction and finance—increasing the relative importance of women’s income to the family during tough times. ( Download…)
The Maine Women’s Lobby achieved many successes with our legislative priorities this past session. An “Act To Amend the Laws Governing Stalking” (L.D. 1873), which updates and clarifies the definition of stalking to better account for technologies used by stalkers, passed without opposition in both the House and the Senate. Other important successes: “An Act To Ensure Fair Wages” (L.D. 1697), which increases the state minimum wage to $7.25 per hour in 2008 and to $7.50 per hour in 2009, and “An Act To Ensure the Freedom of Family Child Care Providers To Jointly Negotiate with the State” (L.D. 2095). This legislation grants family child care providers the right to collectively bargain with the state. With the passage of this bill, these providers will become equal players in making the improvements in child care that Maine’s families, businesses, and communities need. ( Download…)
In the final weeks of the 123rd Legislature, a nearly $200 million budget shortfall and proposed cuts to vital health and human services and education dominated the legislative debate. Ultimately, the Legislature enacted a budget that restored many of the most devastating proposals but still targeted severe cuts to services for the developmentally disabled and elders in need of care. We were proud to play a role in putting people front and center in the budget debate. ( Download…)
In the final months before the start of the regular session of the 123rd Legislature, the Maine Women's Lobby is advocating for bills that have been carried over until January, while monitoring more than 500 new initiatives. ( Download…)
Of the Maine Women's Lobby's top four priority bills, only one was defeated. That bill (L.D. 1309) would have ensured fair and equal access to abortion services for low-income women by providing public funding to those eligible for the state's Medicaid program. ( Download…)
When newly elected members of the Legislature gathered in January, they anticipated considering 2,400 bills. Already, the Maine Women's Lobby has flagged over 100 that could have a direct impact on the lives of Maine women. ( Download…)
On November 7, Maine voters will consider the Taxpayer Bill of Rights (TABOR). TABOR proposes two things: it limits state and local budgets to a formula of population + inflation, as measured by the consumer price index; and it requires a 2/3 approval of a governing body followed by a majority vote by citizens to raise any tax or fee... ( Download…)