On What Women Want

No, this isn’t about the movie starring Mel Gibson and Helen Hunt.

It’s about a national survey of adult women, ages 18 to 70.

Commissioned by the YWCA, the survey identifies areas of concern for women, and includes recommendations about where the new administration and Congress should focus.

The complete survey report is worth reviewing for several reasons, including that it shows where women of various ages agree and differ on an array of issues.

Of particular interest are the priorities of Generation Y women, identified for survey purposes as 18-29.

Women in this age group are heavily focused on individual rights. An overwhelming majority, 77 percent, believe civil rights and racial justice should be a top priority for the new administration.

And this viewpoint isn’t altogether altruistic. Fifty (50) percent of these younger women are personally concerned that racism or discrimination based on religion or ethnicity will be a “major obstacle” to their progress.

Meanwhile, 73 percent of Generation Y women believe that violence against women should be a priority.

Here too personal experience factors in. Thirty-six (36) percent of Generation Y women are “very worried” about being a victim of domestic violence or of knowing someone who is a victim of domestic violence.

Given the extremely full national agenda, it would be easy for leaders to lose sight of these issues. Nevertheless, these problems too must be addressed.

Generation Y survey respondents should be applauded for calling attention to these matters, which affect women of every age. Kudos to the YWCA too for publicizing these survey findings.

Hopefully Washington is listening.

Paula Santonocito
Career Editor, SingleMindedWomen.com