In our society, we do not support women the way we should. Major obstacles persist in Oakland, including public safety issues, denial of equal pay for equal work, glass ceilings that prevent individual women and women-owned businesses from reaching their potential, and women’s health funding disparities. Our job must be to address these problems in a thoughtful, comprehensive way that will bring about change.
Oakland’s goal is to lower crime, and lowering crimes against girls and women needs to be at the top of the priorities list: domestic abuse, work-place harassment, rape, and the exploitation of young women that takes place every day on Oakland's streets. We need leadership at City Hall that will prioritize investigating and prosecuting crimes against women.
The facts are startling:
- One in six women will be a victim of sexual assault in her lifetime
- 7% of girls in grades 5-8 and 12% of girls in grades 9-12 say they have been sexually abused.
- Only 6% of rapists will ever spend a day in jail.
- More than 50% of all rape/sexual assault incidents were reported by victims to have occurred within one mile of their home or at their home.
Dan Siegel has a 40-year record of helping women overcome employment barriers at universities such as UC Berkeley and Stanford, the San Francisco and Fresno Fire Departments, Alaska oil camps, Las Vegas casinos, and many other workplaces.
In addition, we must address comparable worth issues that leave women earning just 80 cents on the dollar for doing the same job as a man. Similarly, we must set proactive goals to encourage women-owned entrepreneurship throughout the city.
We also need to better fund women’s health services in our community clinics, expand workplace child-care incentives, and eliminate sexual harassment in the workplace.
Leveraging all of these resources in order to touch these different issues is something the City must do in partnership with those nonprofits, social service providers and NGO’s that already support this work.