Protecting Families. The Family & Medical Leave Act (FMLA) enables
workers to take up to 12 weeks unpaid leave to care for a new baby or
ailing family member without jeopardizing their job. Millions of
workers have already benefited from FMLA since its enactment. The
President also proposed expanding the Family & Medical Leave Act to
allow workers up to 24 hours per year of unpaid leave for
parent-teacher conferences or routine medical care for a child.
Cutting Taxes for 15 Million Working Families by extending the Earned
Income Tax Credit (EITC). In 1997, the EITC lifted 4.3 million
people, including 2.2 million children, out of poverty -- double the
number of people lifted out of poverty by the EITC in 1993.
Increasing the Minimum Wage from $4.25 to $5.15, giving six million
women a raise.
Narrowing the Wage Gap. Last year, the median earnings of women
working full-time increased 3 percent. In 1997, the median earnings
of women represented 74 percent of the median earnings for men,
remaining the narrowest gap ever.
Fighting for Paycheck Equity. Called on Congress to pass legislation
to strengthen laws prohibiting wage discrimination.
Highest Homeownership Rate in History. There are more than 68
million American families who own homes, more than six million new
homeowners since the President took office. Women's homeownership is
increasing at a faster rate than the rest of the country -- up five
percent since the first quarter of 1994.
Increasing Pension Security. Fought for legislation that has expanded
pension coverage, made pensions more secure for 40 million American
workers and retirees, and simplified pension plan administration.
Promoting new efforts to encourage retirement savings.
Saving Social Security First. In 1999, nearly 60 percent of all
Social Security beneficiaries will be women. Social Security will
be the major source of retirement income for a majority of these
women. President Clinton is committed to saving Social Security for
the 21st Century and has urged that budget surpluses be reserved for
a bipartisan plan to strengthen Social Security.
CARING FOR OUR CHILDREN:
Extending Health Care to Millions of Children with the Children's
Health Insurance Program (CHIP). This is the single largest
investment in Health Care for children since 1965. The President
fought to ensure that the Balanced Budget included $24 billion to
provide real health care coverage to millions of uninsured children.
Fought for and Won $500 Child Tax Credit for 26 Million Families
with Over 40 Million Children under Age 17. Twelve million children
from families with income below $30,000 will receive the child tax
credit as a result of the President's efforts.
Largest Four-Year Drop in Child Poverty Since 1960s. Under
President Clinton, the child poverty rate has declined from 22.7
percent to 19.9 percent -- the biggest four-year drop in nearly 30
years (1965-1969). While this marks significant progress, President
Clinton will continue to fight for policies that help to raise
incomes and reduce poverty.
Ensuring Safe Food for America's Families, making food safety a
priority. Issued new standards to reduce and prevent contamination
of meat, poultry, and seafood; signed the Food Quality Protection
Act with special safeguards for kids; issued new regulations that
improve the safety of fruit and vegetable juices; and created a
President's Council on Food Safety which will develop a
comprehensive food safety strategic plan for federal agencies.
Held First-Ever White House Conference on Child Care and White House
Conference on Early Child Development and Learning. In April 1997,
the President and First Lady held the White House Conference on
Early Child Development and Learning to highlight the benefits of
early nurturing by parents. And in October 1997, the White House
Conference on Child Care began a dialogue on the child care
challenges facing parents today -- availability, affordability, and
assuring safety and quality.
Proposed the Largest Single Investment in Child Care in the Nation's
History. Between FY93 and FY97, federal funding for child care
increased by nearly 79 percent, providing child care services for
over one million children. If enacted, the President's $21 billion
child care proposal will give child care subsidies to millions of
children and increase tax credits for three million working families
to help them pay for child care.
Signed Landmark Adoption and Safe Families Act. This law will help
thousands of children waiting in foster care move more quickly into
safe and permanent homes.
Signed the Comprehensive Childhood Immunization Initiative. Thanks
to President Clinton, immunization rates among two-year-olds have
reached historic highs.
Took Steps to Ensure Children Have Safe Medications. Unveiled an
FDA regulation that protects children by requiring manufacturers to
study appropriate dosage levels of drugs for pediatric populations.
Launched New Strategies to Reduce the High Rate of Teen Pregnancies.
Teen (aged 15 to 19 years) births have fallen six years in a row, by
12 percent from 1991 to 1996.
Increased Child Support Collections by Nearly 70%. Signed into law
the toughest child support crackdown in history.
Imposed Strict Measures to Keep Cigarettes out of the Hands of Our
Children by restricting youth-targeted advertising; and the FDA made
18 the minimum age to purchase tobacco products nationwide,
requiring photo I.D.s for anyone under the age of 27. And the
President is fighting to enact comprehensive tobacco legislation.
INVESTING IN EDUCATION AND TRAINING:
Largest Investment in Education in 30 Years. Maintaining his
longtime commitment to education, the President enacted the largest
investment in education in 30 years -- and the largest investment
in higher education since the G.I. Bill -- by signing the 1997
Balanced Budget Act.
Providing Early Education to More than 830,000 Children with Head
Start. 200,000 more children are enrolled in Head Start today than
Teaching Every Child to Read by the 3rd Grade. More than 1000
colleges have committed work-study students to tutor children in
reading, and thousands of AmeriCorps members and senior volunteers
are organizing volunteer reading campaigns. In addition, the
President is working to enact an early literacy bill such as the
America Reads Initiative that will provide more tutors after school,
improve the teaching of reading in our schools, and help parents
help their children learn to read.
Fighting for Critical Education Investments. The President has
called on Congress to pass critical education priorities included
in his FY99 Budget that include initiatives to recruit quality
teachers, rebuild crumbling schools and reduce class size.
Striving for Excellence with National Education Standards. Seeking
high national standards for all students, the President has proposed
a first-ever national test in 4th grade reading and 8th grade math.
Expanding Choice and Accountability in Public Schools. Supported
increase of public charter schools, from only one charter school in
the nation in 1993 to more than 1,000 charter schools this year.
Promoting National Service and educational opportunities through
Fought for Passage of Education Tax Breaks to Promote Lifelong
Representing the largest single increase in higher education since
the G.I. Bill, the Balanced Budget includes a $1,500 Hope
Scholarship to make the first two years of college universally
available, and a 20-percent tuition tax credit for college juniors,
seniors, graduate students, and working Americans pursuing lifelong
Largest Increase in Pell Grants in 20 Years. Nearly 4 million
students will receive a Pell Grant of up to $3,000, 30% larger than
when the President took office.
IMPROVING OUR NATION'S HEALTH:
Protected and Strengthened Medicare, Benefiting the 22 Million
American Women Enrolled in Medicare. The Balanced Budget Act
extended the life of the Medicare Trust Fund for at least a decade;
expanded choices in health plans; and provided beneficiaries new
preventive benefits, including more affordable annual mammograms for
all beneficiaries, cervical cancer screening, and tests to help
detect osteoporosis. The President has also put forth a new
proposal that will provide greater access to health insurance for
Americans ages 55 to 65, including an option to buy into Medicare.
Increased Funding for Breast Cancer Research. Since the President
took office, funding for breast cancer research, prevention and
treatment has doubled, from about $275 million in FY 1993 to $577
million in the President's FY 1999 budget. In addition, the
President has implemented the Mammography Quality Standards Act to
ensure the quality of mammograms. Women can now find a certified
mammography facility by calling 1-800-4-CANCER.
Providing Protection with the Patients' Bill of Rights. The
President is calling on Congress to pass Federally enforceable
consumer health care protections that include: guaranteed access to
needed health care specialists including direct access to an OB-GYN;
access to emergency room services when and where the need arises;
continuity of care protections to ensure that patients' care will
not abruptly change if their provider is dropped; access to a timely
internal and independent external appeals process for consumers to
resolve their differences with their health plans; a limit on
financial incentives to doctors to limit care and assurances that
doctors and patients can openly discuss treatment options. Women
are particularly vulnerable without these health care protections
because they are greater users of health care services, they make
three-quarters of the health care decisions for their families, and
they have specific health care needs that are directly addressed by
a patients' bill of rights.
Preventing Discrimination Based on Genetic Information Both by
Health Plans and Employers. Urging Congress to pass bipartisan
legislation to prohibit health plans from inappropriately using
genetic screening information to deny coverage, set premiums, or to
distribute confidential information. The President also has
supported legislation that ensures that employers do not use genetic
information to discriminate against employees.
Fought for Greater Health Security for America's Families. The
President signed into law the Health Insurance Portability and
Accountability Act which helps millions of Americans who move from
one job to another, who are self-employed, or who have pre-existing
medical conditions keep their health insurance.
Endorsed Legislation That Would Ban Drive-thru Mastectomies,
allowing women to stay in the hospital at least 48 hours following
Ended Drive-Thru Deliveries. Proposed and signed into law
legislation requiring insurers to cover at least 48 hours of a
post-natal hospital stay (72 hours for a Cesarean).
MAKING OUR HOMES AND COMMUNITIES SAFER:
Putting 100,000 More Police on the Streets. At this time, nearly
80,000 officers have been funded through the 1994 Crime Bill, on the
way to 100,000 more police on the streets and in our communities.
And violent crime has dropped six years in a row - the longest
period of decline in 60 years.
Signed the Assault Weapons Ban, the Brady Bill and an Extension of
Brady into Law. The Brady Law has already kept handguns away from
250,000 persons including felons, fugitives and individuals
convicted of domestic violence misdemeanors or who are under
restraining orders. The President signed into law the extension of
the Brady Law, which prohibits anyone convicted of a domestic
violence offense -- misdemeanor or felony -- from owning or
possessing a firearm.
Will Hold the First-Ever White House Conference on School Safety.
On October 15, 1998, the President will host the White House
Conference on School Safety. The participants will explore
solutions to this national challenge: How do schools, families and
communities work together to make sure that every child is safe in
every school in America.
Signed Megan's Law and the Jacob Wetterling Crimes Against Children
and Sexually Violent Offender Registration Act, requiring states to
set up sex offender registration systems and allows community
notification when sex offenders move into neighborhoods.
Championed and Signed the Violence Against Women Act, the
cornerstone of the President's efforts to fight domestic violence,
and created an office at the Department of Justice dedicated to
combating violence against women.
More than Tripled Funding to Domestic Violence Shelters and
instituted new penalties against men who stalk, threaten or abuse
women across state lines.
Established Nationwide 24-Hour Domestic Violence Hotline. The
hotline (1-800-797-SAFE) provides immediate crisis intervention,
counseling and referrals for those in need. Since the hotline
opened, there have been 229,000 calls -- averaging 8,000 calls a
month -- from all 50 States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico,
and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
PROMOTING REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH SERVICES FOR WOMEN:
Reversed the "Gag Rule" limiting the information federally funded
family planning clinics could give to women.
Greater Support for Family Planning. The President's FY99 proposal
will increase Title X Family Planning grants by $15 million -- a 46
percent increase since FY92.
Signed the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act, establishing a
safety-zone around women's health clinics.
STRENGTHENING EQUAL EMPLOYMENT PROTECTIONS:
Increasing Civil Rights Enforcement. Proposed for the largest single
increase in funding to enforce existing civil rights laws in nearly
two decades. Through new reforms and heightened commitment to
enforcement, the Administration will seek to prevent discrimination
before it occurs and to punish those who do discriminate in
employment, education, housing and health care, and against those
with disabilities. The Clinton Administration's FY99 budget
contains $602 million for civil rights enforcement agencies and
offices -- an increase of $86 million over last year's funding.
Increasing Funding for the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
(EEOC). The cornerstone of the improved civil rights enforcement
effort is a $37 million increase (15 percent) for the EEOC. Through
increased use of mediation, improved information technology and an
expanded investigative staff, the EEOC will reduce the average time
for resolving private-sector complaints from over 9.4 months to
6 months and cut the backlog of cases from 64,000 to 28,000, by the
GENERATING MORE BUSINESS OPPORTUNITIES FOR WOMEN:
Women Are Starting Businesses at Twice the Rate of All Businesses.
Women own nearly 40 percent of all firms in the United States.
These eight million women-owned firms employ 18.5 million -- one in
every five U.S. workers -- and contribute $2.3 trillion to the
economy. The Small Business Administration's Office of Women's
Business Ownership is working to foster this growth.
Tripled the Number of Small Business Loans to Women Entrepreneurs.
Between 1993 and 1997 the SBA approved nearly 50,000 loans to women
entrepreneurs under the 7(a) and 504 loan programs. Last year alone,
the Small Business Administration granted more than 10,000 loans,
worth $1.67 billion, to women small business owners, triple the
number of loans granted in 1992.
WOMEN AS PARTNERS IN DECISION MAKING:
Appointed More Women than Any Other President -- 41 percent of
Administration appointees are women.
Women Hold 29 Percent of the Top Positions -- 29 percent of the
positions requiring Senate confirmation (PAS) are held by women.
34 percent of Presidential appointments, including boards and
commissions, are held by women.
39 percent of non-career Senior Executive Service positions are
held by women.
58 percent of Schedule C positions are held by women.
Appointed the First Women Ever to Serve as Attorney General, Janet
Reno, and Secretary of State, Madeleine Albright. Including the
Attorney General and Secretary of State, women make up 27 percent of
the Clinton Cabinet: Alexis Herman, Secretary of Labor; Donna
Shalala, Secretary of Health and Human Services; Carol Browner,
Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency; Janet Yellen,
Chair of the Council of Economic Advisors; and Charlene Barshefsky,
United States Trade Representative all serve in the President's
30 Percent of All of the President's Judicial Nominees Are Women.
Nominated the Second Woman to Serve on the Supreme Court. During
his first year in office, President Clinton nominated Ruth Bader
Ginsburg to the United States Supreme Court. Justice Ginsburg is
only the second woman to serve on the nation's highest court.