New Poll Shows Family Economic Security Is a Top Priority For Black And Hispanic Women
In 2016, nearly one in three eligible voters will a person of color. And 74 percent of newly eligible women voters since 2000 are women of color. So this election black and Hispanic women in particular have the potential to be the deciding factor in key elections, making issues facing their families key focuses for all candidates. So what are those issues? Policies that improve economic security.
That’s according to a new CAP and Latino Decisions poll released today. The poll, which surveyed 1,600 black and Hispanic women in Colorado, Florida, Nevada, and Virginia, found that economic security, often together with barriers related to race and ethnicity are key priorities facing these women. An overwhelming majority of black and Hispanic women would like to see the next president focus on the well-being of working families.
“Not only are these women and their families looking for candidates to have concrete plans to address their economic challenges, but it is also their families that are disproportionately affected by the failure to act up to this point. That is why we are seeing such overwhelming support for issues such as equal pay and affordable child care: These communities see the impact these policies would have on their lives,” said Angie Kelley, Executive Director of CAP Action.
Of course, black and Hispanic women, like virtually all people, are not single-issue voters. The survey also finds that working black and Hispanic women report facing significant amounts of work-related hardship, experiencing racism and sexism, and supporting policies that would address these and the economic issues they face. Here are a few key findings from the poll:
- Improving economic well-being of working families is a top priority: 87 percent of black women and 88 percent of Hispanic women call improving economic well-being of working families the “top most important priority or “one of a few important priorities” for the new president.
- Support for equal pay, for both racial and gender dimensions, is high: Black and Hispanic families are disproportionately impacted by the pay gap. And on pay equity, the support is overwhelmingly strong for gender equity—83 percent of black women and 77 percent of Hispanic women—and for racial equity—82 percent and 74 percent respectively.
- Quality, affordable child care is out of reach: 36 percent of black women and 45 percent of Hispanic women report difficulty at work as a result of a lack of reliable child care. In fact, a majority of both black women and Hispanic women report that “reliable child care when you need it;” “high-quality, in-home child care;” “high-quality child care centers in your neighborhood or near work;” and “affordable child care” are “out of reach” for them.
- Access to paid leave is scarce: More than 40 percent of both black and Hispanic women are unable to take time off if they or a family member gets sick and go unpaid if they decide to have a child or if their child gets sick.
Issues such as equal pay, paid sick leave, and affordable child care receive broad support among many groups, but black and Hispanic women overwhelmingly see how these policies would help them and their families. For more details check out the poll memo here and the full results here. And while today’s poll only focused on black and Hispanic women, new CAP fact sheet also finds that Asian American and Pacific Islander women face many of the same economic challenges as black and Hispanic women.
BOTTOM LINE: Black and Hispanic women make up a diverse and growing voting bloc, and one that is only becoming more powerful. This new polling shows that black and Hispanic women are as concerned about the economic well-being of women and families as they are about the policy issues that are most commonly attributed to them like immigration and civil rights. In order to support black and Hispanic women and families we need policies that will address both racial and gender gaps, and make families more secure.
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