Economic Justice for Women

The Family Fund’s program for women’s economic justice seeks to improve the quality of life for working women and their families by advocating for equitable employment opportunities and updated employment standards.  Working at the national, state and local levels, we support research, training, public education campaigns and advocacy efforts.


Workplace Reforms & Paid Sick Days
Workplace policies in the United States have not been updated despite the enormous changes in the workforce that have occurred over the past 50 years. While the typical American family with children in the 1950’s had a homemaker and a breadwinner, today’s American family is most likely run by two parents – both working out of the home – or a single parent also working outside the home. This basic fact has had a cascading series of societal, cultural and economic effects, including the inability of many women to meet their family and work responsibilities due to antiquated and rigid workplace policies. One of the most promising ways to improve the economic status of women is to modernize America’s employment standards.  Since 2008, RFF has undertaken this initiative to educate the public about work/family conflict and its detrimental effect on the economy and family economic security.  RFF has primarily focused on paid leave policies that allow employees to take care of their own health needs or those of a family member.  Beginning with paid sick day wins in Connecticut and Seattle and more recent wins in Portland, OR, and New York City, this initiative has achieved stunning successes.

For more information about paid sick leave and other workplace reform policies, visit the National Partnership for Women and Families, the Center for American Progress, and  see American Women's toolkit.


Representative Grants


A Better Balance
Legal support for earned sick days campaigns.

American Women
Support for the Economic Security & Opportunity Tool Kit and the American Women Trend Report.

Family Story
Research on attitudes and messaging about families.

TakeAction Minnesota
501c4 funding for the earned sick days campaign.

Women's Media Center
For the Media Watch on Women and the Economy project.



Alliance for Just Society
For Main Street Alliance's Healthy Workers, Strong Local Economies project.

Center for Popular Democracy
For work to develop a comprehensive policy agenda for women's economic equality, including paid sick days policies.

Family Forward Oregon
To support the state-wide paid sick days campaign in Oregon.

MomsRising Education Fund
For a public education campaign about paid sick days. 




Vermont Passes Statewide Earned Sick Leave Bill:

In March, Vermont's Governor signed the legislation which will guarantee the right to earned sick leave to more than 60,000 residents.  It joins Connecticut, California, Massachussetts, and Oregon, as well as 24 cities that have passed paid sick days laws.

Economic Justice Victory in Arizona!:

On November 8, voters in Arizona overwhelmingly approved Proposition 206 – a ballot initiative to establish earned sick leave and increase the minimum wage! Read more about this important success for working women and their families here.