Recently in the news, there has been a significant amount of buzz around the importance of women in the upcoming election. With many women’s issues hotly debated between candidates at the federal, state, and local level, women have been highlighted as a key voting block to influence election outcomes this November.
Long before the media buzz, however, the organization, Federally Employed Women(FEW), has been working to achieve gender equity on a broad portfolio of issues that impact women in the federal workplace. The recently elected President of FEW, Michelle Crockett, spoke to Chris Dorobek of the DorobekINSIDER regarding the organization, women in the federal workforce, and issues confronting the entire federal workforce today.
As Crockett discussed, one of the goals of FEW is to support women as they work toward attaining higher levels in the federal workforce. She told Dorobek, “If you look at the workforce data, it definitely indicates that the majority of women will be seen in the mid to lower level positions within the federal sector, and clearly often clerical or administrative positions. There have been some incremental changes, but there is a lot of work to be done in that area.”
Crockett mentioned that one of her primary areas of focus is professional development and training in leadership skills for women in the federal workforce. During her tenure, FEW will offer members quarterly training webinars, beginning this September 27th, 2012. The first webinar will focus on the federal workforce at large, and how to deal with this new age of austerity. Through providing training opportunities for federally employed women, FEW hopes to see greater promotion of women throughout government.
In addition to training, FEW focuses on diversity in the workplace, compliance with current legislation and a wide-ranging legislative portfolio of issues that affect federally employed women. Their legislative portfoliois broken down into three tiers of issues that guide their public policy activities. These tiers differentiate between issues faced exclusively by women in the workplace as opposed to issues that affect not only women but also all federal workers. As Crockett explained, “We were established back in 1968 because we were concerned about the Federal Women’s program within the Federal Sector. We wanted to ensure that the Federal Women’s program received the resources that it needed […] We’ve transitioned to not only be concerned about women within the federal sector, but all employees”.
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