Cary Brown

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Grant will help study paid family leave

MONTPELIER — The Vermont Commission on Women has received a $174,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Labor to study the implementation of paid family and medical leave in Vermont. The U.S. Department of Labor’s Women’s Bureau announced a total of $1.55 million in grants to research and analyze how paid leave programs can be developed and implemented across the country. The Vermont Commission on Women, an independent non-partisan state commission dedicated to advancing rights and opportunities for women in Vermont, will utilize the grant to explore how paid family and medical leave can work in Vermont, according to Executive Director Cary Brown. “It’s really a collection of smaller projects that are part of an overall feasibility study,” she said. “We will be issuing a number of contracts with various individuals and organizations in order to conduct different parts of this.”

Brown said the commission is looking to explore potential administrative structures for providing paid leave in Vermont, as well both public and private funding options. Continue Reading →

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Single moms can’t afford Shumlin cuts, says Vermont Commission on Women

In a somewhat unusual public foray into legislative politics, the Vermont Commission on Women this afternoon issued a statement opposing Gov. Peter Shumlin’s plan for welfare reform. The 16-member commission, which bills itself as a “non-partisan state agency dedicated to legislative, economic, social, and political fairness,” said it weighed the matter carefully before determining the plan would have a disproportionate impact on single mothers. Shumlin has proposed a five-year cap on welfare benefits, a cost-cutting measure he says will encourage impoverished Vermonters to get jobs. The move would shave about $6 million annually in human services costs, and kick about 1,200 families off the welfare rolls beginning in October. In a release, the Vermont Commission on Women said the “overwhelming majority of Vermont households receiving this cash assistance are women, and limits to this program will disproportionately affect female-headed families with children.”

“A number of facts lead the VCW to this conclusion,” the release said. Continue Reading →

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