In November, United States voters will pick their new president. The Center for American Progress recently polled 1,600 African American and Hispanic women interviewed in four battleground states—Colorado, Florida, Nevada, and Virginia– to find out what their concerns are. Women of color in these battleground states could have a significant impact on the presidential nomination.
Here’s what they have to say to the presidential candidates.
FINANCIAL SECURITY FOR WORKING FAMILIES
Unanimously, the number one concern of both Latinas and African-American women are the financial well being of their family.
Indeed, 87% of African American women and 88% of Latinas consider that improving the economical situation of working families should be the main area of focus of the 2016 elections. This trend should not come as a surprise especially considering than Women of Color are the first victims of unequal pay in America. African-American Women and Latinas respectively make $0.60 and $0.55 for every dollar paid to white, non-Hispanic men. Outrageous. As rightfully stated by the National Partnership for Women and families: “When women lose income, their economic security and that of their families is diminished.”
Here are some of the specific challenges and concerned voiced by Women of Color:
- Low pay is an obstacle confronting a large majority of Black women (63%) and Latinas (61%)
- 42% of Black women and 53% of Latinas are worried that they or someone in their household might lose their job in the next year
- 36% of Black women 45% of Latinas report difficulty at work as a result of lack of reliable child care
Here are some specific policies women of color would like to see implemented:
- 77% of Black women and 74% of Hispanic women favor up to 7 paid sick days per year
- 79% of Black women and 75% of Latinas favor paid family leave, up to 12 weeks, for a new child, serious illness, or serious illness in the family.
- On pay equity, the support is also overwhelmingly strong for gender equity (83% and 77%) and for racial equity (82% and 74%).
CONCERNS REGARDING DISCRIMINATION AND RACISM
Many concerns have been voiced both on gender and race discrimination issues. 1/3 of Latinas and almost 1/2 of African American women reported personally experiencing “a great deal” of discrimination. Half of those women also considered that “the bias is based equally on their race and gender”.
When asked to name up to two “most important” issues facing African American and Hispanic women entering the 2016 election:
- 27% of Black women were especially likely point race relations and racism
- 21% of Latinas were especially likely to identify immigration and deportations
The picture is not much better in the workplace where 36% of Black women and 31% of Latinas reported unfair treatment based on their race/ethnicity and 28% of black women and 28% of Latinas based on heir gender.
We truly hope those challenges will be heard by elected officials and presidential candidates. Let’s make sure we spread the word to voice the legitimate concerns of the women of color of our country.
Access the full poll’s highlights here.