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2017 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Women Employed

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Civil Rights, Education, Job Training, Women, Womens Rights

Mission: The mission of Women Employed is to improve the economic status of women and remove barriers to economic equity. Women Employed has one passion: to make life better for working women. We believe that all women deserve full and fair economic opportunities. That means better career options and higher pay, more opportunities for training and education, and strict enforcement of fair employment laws. Women Employed is a leading national advocate for women's economic advancement. We analyze workplace issues, educate policy makers, and build support to improve opportunities and incomes. Since 1973, Women Employed has fought to outlaw pay discrimination, pregnancy discrimination and sexual harassment and to strengthen federal equal opportunity policies and work/family benefits.

Target demographics: working women

Geographic areas served: Illinois and federal-level advocacy

Programs: Women Employed envisions of a world in which all women can achieve their aspirations and support their families. To get there, we need to make workplaces fairer and ensure that more women can succeed in education and training for good jobs.

Community Stories

41 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been a Women Employed volunteer for several years. I am impressed by the way the organization leverages the passion and commitment of its small staff to make big changes in the lives of female workers. In addition to its advocacy for women already in the workplace, the organization has initiatives that lift women into the world of work by promoting access to education. They run a lean operation and maximize every penny so that their programs can be maximally successful. I am extremely proud to be a part of the Women Employed family.

mollybyron2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

In the fall of 2015, I had the pleasure of interviewing Women Employed’s Senior Policy Associate Sarah Labadie about WE’s advocacy toward women’s educational and workplace success. It was a great source of motivation and empowerment, and inspired me to get involved with Women Employed and apply for the Summer Leadership Program.

As a Summer Leader, I gained a stronger understanding of the barriers facing low-paid working women, and how non-profit advocacy work can change public policies and workplace practices for women.

I continue to be involved with Women Employed and utilize their action network to advocate for equal opportunities for women.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've been involved with WE for 3 years at this point. They've been around for 45 years, working on the same general set of issues. This speaks to the integrity and quality of work that WE is doing. I am continually impressed and amazed at the dedication of the people who work for WE, and at the amazing work that I see from my fellow volunteers. It's a group that inspires commitment and dedication from its people. I also think that it would be really easy to assume WE is only doing work for very high earning women (e.g. those fighting to break the Glass Ceiling) only, but WE is committed to doing the hard work of fighting for low-wage workers and helping all women get a leg up in the world. I'm very happy to see that they continue to be aware of intersectional issues.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I've been involved directly with Women Employed for over 4 years and have known about the work they do for even more. The staff is whip smart, kind, and very dedicated to the mission of helping low-income women have access to quality jobs and the education and training to attain those jobs. I am proud to serve on their young professionals Advocacy Council and even more proud to share the work they do with my friends and family on a regular basis.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Women Employed is one of the best run organizations I've ever seen - they are smart, effective at what they do and value every dollar and hour given to them by their supporters and put it back into the work. Since my day job is at a digital marketing agency working with many nonprofits, I've seen how many are managed and how they treat their volunteers. Initially met this organization over 10 years ago when a friend was volunteering with them. She kept saying how well run and impactful their work was for women - and had been for many years. They focus on advocating for change to help women get ahead in the world through employment and education. After checking it out myself - attending their events; reading their materials, including their annual report; checking out their credentials - how they spend their money etc. through organizations who rate charities - I decided to volunteer with my limited time. I'm still there after 8+ years! I love working with them to help change the laws, regulations and business practices that inhibit our ability - and those of our sisters, girlfriends, daughters and granddaughters - to gain pay equity, equal opportunity in the workplace and to remove obstacles like sexual harassment. I give money to several organizations - but I only give both money and my time to Women Employed. It means a lot to me - and if you check it out, I'm sure you'll find it worthy of either your time or money - or both!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As a member of the Advocacy Council, I was proud to help affect changes to the sick pay laws in Chicago - and I gained experience and exposure as a young professional.

Taylor R.1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Over the past year working with these women I have been able to see the passage of many key laws that protect and empower women as well as other working class citizens.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Women Employed is an excellent organization with passionate staff and an engaged army of supporters. They do so much to advocate for working women and initiatives that benefit all families. I’m proud to serve on its advocacy council.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Sometimes it’s easy to feel overwhelmed and dwell on the negative when doing social justice work. But as a member of Women Employed's Advocacy Council, once a month I get to engage with a room full of smart, passionate, and dedicated women who are all working towards the same goal. Thanks to them, I leave each meeting feeling supported, empowered and recommitted to being an advocate for myself and other working women.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've volunteered on Women Employed's Advocacy Council for a few years now and in that time have been so impressed by their ability to engage policymakers, the business community, and women with diverse backgrounds and talents as partners in addressing the systems-level change that is needed to bring real, positive change to the lives of women throughout Illinois.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've volunteered with Women Employed for over a decade because they are meeting a need that few other groups address. The working poor, and low-wage working women in particular, have Women Employed to thank for advocating for equal opportunity laws, equal pay for equal work, earning sick days, workplace rights for pregnant women, college financial aid for working adults, and fighting against unfair scheduling. I've had a US Senator's Chief of Staff say to me that he can always tell when Women Employed is "on the case" because they tackle issues others don't, because their constituents are always so knowledgeable when calling the Senator, and because they persist until they get results. Women Employed is a small but mighty nonprofit!!

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Women Employed is committed to both breaking through glass ceilings AND raising the floor--making sure that all women have the opportunity to work in good jobs with benefits such as earned sick time, paid family leave, and supportive environments.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I love their hands on approach! WE really works to out women's issues in the spotlight. I am honored to be a part of WE and appreciate this nonprofit so much that I've brought friends in, which is the highest compliment. WE is also the most organized nonprofit I've ever volunteered for. My favorite experience so far was the women's luncheon. It's an event that everyone should attend.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Currently I am an Advocacy Council Leadership Committee member, for Women Employed (WE). I have volunteered for Women Employed since 2015, after learning about this agency through one of my graduate classes at The University of Chicago.
Currently I work for American Indian Health Services of Chicago, Inc. Due to my work with company, Women Employed reached out to me and encouraged me to write and submit a piece for their blog regarding the equal pay gap's effects on Native American women. As a result of this piece, and the coverage it received, my agency gave me a promotion, which focuses partly on the economic empowerment of young Native women.

Priya G.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I was first introduced to Women Employed when I attended an event in 2016 called "Putting Change on the Menu." This event, which talked about the impact that low-paying, low-opportunity food service jobs have on the women and men who work them, opened my eyes to issues that are not immediately in front of me. For the last year, Women Employed has done a tremendous job helping me understand the issues that women face in the workplace and giving me opportunities to help make a difference for myself and women everywhere. The staff are incredibly knowledgeable and provide plenty of guidance for volunteer leaders to accomplish tasks to further the organization's mission.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I got involved with Women Employed about a year ago and have been continuously impressed with the professionalism and passion the Women Employed team possesses. I have seen first hand the work they put into their mission. I've worked with several non-profits in the past, and Women Employed is top-notch.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

It’s easy to send messages of support for fair wages, benefits, treatment and education opportunities 140 characters at a time. Women Employed's Advocacy Council gives me clear, concrete ways to contribute to change, whether it’s by assisting the organization in their next event, raising money from like-minded supporters, or getting friends involved beyond retweeting Roxanne Gay when the mood strikes.

2

Donor

Rating: 5

Women Employed is smart, focused, and effective, and is making a real difference particularly in the lives of low-wage working women

1 Kimberly105

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

WE has truly been an inspiration ever since I was first introduced to the organization in 2012 by another single mom/ friend! Over the past couple of years, I have eagerly shared WE's info & messages concerning wage equality, support for the Non-Traditional student, availability & the options surrounding financial aid, and the importance of women voting. I urge others (like us) to do the same!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I serve on the marketing committee for Women Employed and am truly honored to be a part of this great mission. WE is working hard to advance the lives of all women, and especially women working in low-wage jobs. It takes a clear vision of a better future, smart leadership, and a consistent, fresh message to remain relevant in a saturated marketplace. WE has all of these - as well as the history and savvy to rise above the fray and remain a critically important advocate for this segment of the workforce.