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Yesterday (November 19) I went to Trenton to voice NOW's support for raising the minimum wage. As we organized for the noon press conference, I was twice moved from where I was standing to another spot. I ended up directly behind the speaker position. (This reminded me of the big outdoor rally at the 2002 Nashville conference where the same thing happened.) I was at the end of the speaker list, and decided it made no sense for me to repeat what the other speakers had already said. So here's the gist of what I said:
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This morning I attended a program about the war on women, featuring Senator Linda Greenstein. During the open question segment, I asked her about S2070. She said she had not received a good explanation of how the DOW would be fit into the Dpt of Children and Families. It's as if they would sort that out after the bill was signed.
After I got home, I emailed Janice Kovach. She was the Director of the DOW starting under Corzine, ending when she and Christie parted ways. Christie never replaced her. So for about 2 years, the DOW has had no director. That shows us what Christie thinks of the mission of DOW.
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Yesterday I went to Trenton to testify on bill S2070/A3101. This bill reorganizes the Department of Children and Families. One provision transfers the Division on Women (DOW) from its current position in Community Affairs to Children and Families. Unfortunately, the original wording changed the title to the Office on Women. Taking away the status of Division would really disempower the organization, taking way its sub-cabinet rank in the executive hierarchy.
Former Directors of the DOW (including Linda Bowker) raised the alarm. The Women's Political Caucus of NJ (WPC) jumped on the issue. Senator Barbara Buono worked hard behind the scenes and negotiated an amendment to the bill to change "Office" to "Division".