April 13, 2018
Even as Medicaid, Medicare, and the Affordable Care Act have increased access to health care, these programs have loopholes, are frequently under attack, and health insurance coverage in the U.S. remains largely employment-based. This affects all working class people in general, but it affects women in particular ways: women are often responsible for the care of others – sick children, adult family members, the elderly – even as they face difficulties accessing health care for themselves. Women are often without adequate health insurance coverage or access to reproductive and maternal health care. The time needed to provide care for others and seek care for themselves typically requires flexible schedules and time away from work which many employers are unwilling to accommodate, putting women's income and employment-based health insurance coverage in jeopardy. The caregiving responsibilities placed on women create an additional burden of unpaid domestic labor rarely shared by men that occurs once the regular work day is over. This is sometimes called the "double day" or "second shift.”
It's critical to examine our current circumstances and lived experience under the current health care system in order to imagine what our future could look like if health care were untethered from employment and caregiving responsibilities were no longer a responsibility borne mostly by women. These conversations and their conclusions will inform future action in the fight for women's liberation.
Join National Women's Liberation at A.I.R. Gallery on a April 13 from 6-8pm for a feminist consciousness-raising session and to answer the question, "How would your life be different if you had free and guaranteed healthcare?"