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4 Ways Government Shut Down Will Hurt Women

Topics: Current Events

The federal sequester is felt by a wide range of demographics, it’s true. But some of the programs getting shuttered until the nation’s leaders get their act together and come up with a budget agreement affect the nation’s most marginalized people – the working poor, children, veterans, the elderly and women.

(Photo credit: Ian D. Keating / Flickr)

1. Baby food. Yup. On the list of “non-essential” government programs that closed up shop this week was the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC). More than half the nation’s babies rely on this program to get enough food. We’d link you to the source, but the agency’s website is down until the government figures out how to fund itself. 

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2. Childcare. Working women will feel the pain of this loss. When funding was pulled for the Head Start program, moms had to start figuring out who’s going to take care of their kids while they’re at work or skip work altogether.

3. College. Women outnumber men in higher education right now. The sequester may delay federal loans and Pell grants since loan offices are being furloughed

4. Flu shots. Face it: Women are more likely to stay home and care for a sick child. So it’s safe to say the Centers for Disease Control, which targets vaccinations to control the virus spreading, being furloughed might mean more moms calling in to work to take care of the family.

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What other programs would you add to this list? We want to hear from you! Leave a comment or join the discussion on Twitter.

Jennifer Wadsworth
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