This brief is published by Change The Story VT (CTS), a multi-year strategy to align philanthropy, policy, and program to significantly improve women’s economic status in Vermont. CTS is fueled by three statewide organizations focused on women’s economic well-being: the Vermont Women’s Fund, Vermont Commission on Women, and Vermont Works for Women.
This is the first in a series of briefs we will publish on topics related to women’s economic well-being. Much of the data in the briefs is either new, or not regularly collected or published. All of the data is specific to Vermont, and all is critical – not just in what it reflects about women, but in its implications for the entire Vermont economy.
Among the findings:
- Women are significantly more likely than men to live in poverty or economic insecurity – in large part because they have primary responsibility for the care of minor children.
- 43% of VT women who work full-time do not make enough to cover basic living expenses as defined by VT’s Joint Fiscal Office.
- The poverty rate for families headed by single women is 37.5% – nine times the poverty rate of married couples.
- Women who work full-time are disproportionately employed in low-wage jobs – in every age group, at every level of education.
- VT women are especially vulnerable in their senior years, when their median annual income from Social Security ($10,000) is half that of men ($20,000).
The data in this report was collected and analyzed by Flint Springs Associates, a Vermont-based consulting firm; principal researchers were Joy Livingston and Vicki Hart.