Women make around 82% of what men make in the same job according to a recent national study by Pew Research. The Equal Pay for Equal Work act of 2022 was passed by the Mississippi legislature to address the state’s lack of an equal pay bill. But the Mississippi Black Women’s Round Table says lawmakers need to remove language that carves out several exceptions for wage discrimination. Executive Director Cassandra Welchlin says it allows employers to use pay history and employment gaps as justification for unequal wages.
Excerpt from NBC News – The Mississippi Maternal Mortality Report shows that the maternal mortality rate increased by 8.8% between 2013‐2016 and 2017‐2019, with the latter period being the most recent one analyzed by researchers.
Black, non-Hispanic women had a rate four times higher than white, non-Hispanic women, according to a report released Thursday by the state’s Department of Health.
The grim figures arrive as the state is expecting more births each year as a result of the U.S. Supreme Court decision last summer overturning the 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling, which had established a nationwide constitutional protection for abortion. The court used a Mississippi case to overturn the case, a legal effort the state’s leaders have lauded.
Excerpt from MPB – Among the coalition of activists calling on the legislature to extend postpartum Medicaid is Cassandra Welchlin, Executive Director of the Mississippi Black Women’s Round Table. She says postpartum care isn’t just an issue that would affect mothers.
Welchlin says, “It’s a family issue, it’s a community issue, it’s a state issue. Because all the benefits that we know exist and all the roles that a mom and a woman plays. So it’s just going to be huge. And it’s going to lower the maternal mortality rate, which is what we’re trying to do.”
Mississippi has one of the highest maternal mortality rates in the nation.
Excerpt from MS Today–Cassandra Welchlin, executive director of the Mississippi Black Women’s Roundtable, and Mississippi Today health reporter Will Stribling discuss the roundtable’s Mississippi Voices project. The project is seeking to elevate the experiences of Black women and girls who face barriers to accessing health care by collecting and sharing their stories.