NWLC Statement on the Path Forward for the Build Back Better Act

(Washington, D.C.) The following is a statement from Fatima Goss Graves, president and CEO of the National Women’s Law Center:

“With millions facing uncertain futures and a pandemic that rages on, the fragile foundation women are asked to build their lives upon continues to crack and splinter under the weight of this moment in our nation’s history. The Build Back Better Act remains the best path forward towards a more resilient and fair economy, one that can give women and caregivers security and stability in a time of such precarity. But it is also our last best hope to prevent the collapse of our child care system, ensure millions more women are not pushed out of the labor force,  prevent increased health inequity, and stop the descent of millions of children into poverty with the pending lapse of the Child Tax Credit. Doing nothing is not an option for this Congress or this economy, and we will never stop fighting for the deal women and families deserve.”

According to an analysis from the National Women’s Law Center and The Center on Poverty & Social Policy

  • Over the entire life course, access to affordable child care could increase the lifetime earnings for women with two children by about $94,000, which would lead to an increase of about $20,000 in private savings (contributions plus growth) and an additional $10,000 in Social Security benefits. It would also boost the collective lifetime earnings of a cohort of 1.3 million women by $130 billion
  • For Black mothers in deep poverty, child care reform will result in a lifetime net increase in income of $108,000.

According to an analysis by the National Women’s Law Center:

  • Since February 2020, the economy has experienced a net loss of over 3.9 million jobs; women account for 58.2% of those losses.
  • Women’s labor force participation was still just 57.5% in November 2021. Before the pandemic started, women’s labor force participation rate had not been as low as 57.5% since 1989, more than a generation ago.
  • 91,000 Black women left the labor force in November, even during a month when women overall reentered the labor force in significant numbers.
  • The child care sector lost 2,100 jobs last month. The net number of child care jobs lost since February 2020 is 108,100. The child care sector has lost more than 1 in 10 jobs (10.3%) since the start of the crisis.