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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

20 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

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.

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!!

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.

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.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

From my perspective as a volunteer member of the WE Advocacy Council, Women Employed is an organization filled with people who are deeply committed to their mission and values -- to diligently advocate on behalf of women in low-wage employment to improve labor conditions and opportunities. I always feel energized and more informed after WE events. The organization has also proven nimble over the years, adapting its central issues to meet the changing needs of women in the low-wage sector in order to address the social, political, and economic realities of the historical moment (although of course, many of the same issues persist, as well).

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Women Employed represents my values through its mission and dedication to issues that affect low-income women. They have a strong team, an incredible history of achievements, and continue to make great strides in bolstering the higher education and financial stability if this population. I'm proud to volunteer with WE!

10

Volunteer

Rating: 5

In 1975 I joined Women Employed (WE)and its efforts for equal opportunity for women and minorities. Working together with staff and other volunteers provided friendships enduring to this day, along with a sense of purpose in ensuring better opportunities for women now and in the future. Over the last 3 decades WE has joined with other women's and civil rights organizations to make substantial progress on all leading issues affecting women/minorities: employment descrimination, Family Medical Leave, insurance reform, unfair and/or illegal workplace policies, benefits for low-wage workers - to name a few.

7

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Women Employed is an organization with a strong mission to improve the American workplace for women. The nonprofit agency sticks to that mission in its daily work. I first learned about it when I was about 25 and was really just getting started in my career. At the time, I saw injustices in the workplace but had no way of expressing it or responding to it. I heard about Women Employed and was interested in getting more involved in it. I didn't pursue it at the time, but I never forgot about the organization. Later I applied for a job there, and though I didn't quite fit their needs, they suggested I join their Marketing Committee. It has been interesting.

Comments ( 1 )

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womenemployed 05/28/2010

Thank you so much for taking the time to write such a great review. We really appreciate it!

8

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I was introduced to the organization about 8 years ago and when I saw their long list of accomplishments in education, awareness and legislative advocacy--empowering women through economic advancement--it really hit home for me. Growing up, my single Mom raised seven kids by working simultaneously working many jobs and many hours. Without the benefit of a college degree or affordable child care, she was working to scrape by--or almost scrape by. Having a place to live and food on the table wasn't a given. Thanks to a work/learn program that was available when I was a teenager, I was able to acquire business skills that helped me earn my way through college and achieve a BS degree from a well-respected private college. Thanks to that degree and my other skills,I've had a successful career in sales and marketing in technology. I have firsthand knowledge of what an education can mean for a woman--and as we all know, if a woman has more opportunity, then her children--and her entire community--benefits. Because of Women Employed's long history and ongoing dedication to improving the lives of women and their families, I originally became a Board Member. After a short stint on the West Coast (where I had to give up my duties due to some family business), have returned and am now actively involved in the Marketing Committee--helping make others aware of Women Employed's work and how we can work together to help women succeed.

Comments ( 1 )

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womenemployed 05/28/2010

Thanks so much for writing this wonderful review, and for your involvement with WE over the years. We appreciate it!