State Rep. Janine Boyd (D-Cleveland Heights) and the Ohio House Democratic Women’s Caucus (OHDWC) today gathered with women from across the state to discuss and lobby for policy solutions to challenges Ohio women face. In its fifth year of existence, the event featured guest speakers, a lobbying seminar and policy briefings from women legislators. The group focused its efforts on equal pay, workplace discrimination, infant mortality and domestic violence.
“Every day in the legislature, important decisions are being made that affect women’s access to healthcare and economic opportunity,” said OHDWC Chair Teresa Fedor (D-Toledo). “By bringing together women from across the state we can engage in thoughtful dialogue on how to overcome the challenges women and working families face in Ohio, and we can empower Ohio’s women to engage with decision makers.”
Several women lawmakers took the opportunity to address participants about legislation they have introduced that would positively affect women and working families in Ohio. Rep. Boyd emphasized the current movement to criminalize our physicians through anti-choice legislation such as HB 69 and HB 135.
“We must alert our physicians and stand united with them against this kind of legislation, which limits their capacity for care and our personal and constitutional right to make our health care choices,” Rep. Boyd said.
The Women’s Lobby Day coincides with the release of a new report that shows Ohio continues to lag behind much of the nation in terms of gender equality. The Status of Women in the States report, released by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, ranked Ohio 27th in access to healthcare, 30th in poverty and opportunity measures, and 39th in health and well-being. Ohio didn’t receive a grade higher than C in any category defined by the report.
The mission of the Ohio House Democratic Women's Caucus is to develop and pass policies and legislation that improve the lives of Ohio women and their families; to identify and support emerging women leaders by serving as mentors; to educate and empower women and increase women's involvement in public life and in the Ohio General Assembly.