This year, California’s Commission on the Status of Women and Girls celebrates 50 years of substantial impact on state policy affecting gender equity; a half century of progress at home, in the workplace, and in leadership for the state’s women and girls.
Ever since the 1965 establishment of the Commission, California has remained at the forefront in achieving tremendous gains in equity, education, and employment for women and girls. This impact is sustained through the continued vision and commitment of California’s policy makers, educators, advocates, researchers, and its partners at state, county, and city levels. The Commission is proud to be an effective leader and contributor to much of this work.
There is still a lot of work to be done. Despite significant gains, gender equity remains elusive for many women and girls. The Commission, an independent state agency, is uniquely positioned to help identify and initiate coordinated responses to issues that hinder the success of our women and girls. Its strong leadership includes statutory, legislative, and public member appointees, as well as a new executive director, who are each real catalysts for change—change that will help achieve gender equity in California, and beyond.
To launch our focus on the future we are releasing this STAT Sheet to benchmark how far we have come and provide a clear direction for action in future years.
In the years to come, the Commission will move forward through public hearings and educational forums, research, collaboration, and outreach with other state and local agencies, women’s organizations, businesses, and the general public to meet achievable goals for California’s women and girls. Our immediate goals include growing the number of women and girls in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics education; expanding the number of women and girls in the labor force increasing women veterans’ awareness and usage of earned state and federal benefits. A first task is to build a readily available, comprehensive database of California policies, programs, state and federal laws, issue information, and other resources relevant to women and girls.
We sincerely thank our research partners at the State Library’s Research Bureau and Mount Saint Mary’s University for providing us with much of the data for this first STAT Sheet. We salute the significant efforts of our past Commissioners, and pledge that the Commission will carry on their work to increase equity, access, and justice for women and girls in California.
We look forward to celebrating an even greater impact as we work together for California’s women and girls.