Staggering report says many women on the verge of poverty

Estimated 42M women face financial hardships

Ashley Montgomery | 1/23/2014, 9 a.m.

Amidst the growing number of Americans who have made advancements within the economy, there is still an unbelievable number of women in the United States that are will treading the poverty line. 

Recently a special report was released by NBC’s Maria Shriver and the Center for American Progress titled, The Shriver Report: A Woman’s Nation Pushes Back from the Brink, that delves deep into the national economic crisis. Celebrities like Beyonce and LeBron James even chimed in to give their perspective on the matter. Beyonce penning a feminist letter to the women in the country and James making a personal tribute to his own mother who raised him being a young adult with with limited resources.

“We need to stop buying into about gender equality,” Beyonce wrote. 

“It isn’t reality yet. Today, women make up half of the U.S. workforce, but the average working woman earn only 77 percent of what the average working man makes,” she continued. 

James’ open letter titled, America’s Working Single Mothers: An Appreciation, touched moms’ hearts around the nation.

He went into much detail about the sacrifices his mother had to take in order to provide him with a life that she couldn’t give at the time. 

“My mom worked anywhere and everywhere, trying to make ends meet,” the Miami Heat forward said. “I knew that no matter what happened, nothing and nobody was more important to her than I was. I went without a lot of things, but never for one second did I feel unimportant or unloved.” 

He goes on to say how he went to live with his pee-wee football coach until his mother was able to rent a two-bedroom apartment with help of a government-assistance program. 

Some of the main findings from the report included: 75 percent wish they had devoted more time and energy to education and career — relative to 58 percent of the general population; 40 percent of all American households with children below the age of 18 include mothers who are either the only or primary source of income; the average earnings of full-time female workers still just 77 percent of the average earnings of their male colleagues. 

Potential Remedies 

The Shriver Report: A Woman’s Nation Pushes Back from the Brink offers a lot of potential remedies from a wide range of perspectives.

Shriver made an appearance on Meet the Press and said that her main objective when putting this together was to inspire women to think for themselves “as providers, not being provided for.” 

The Miami Times caught up with a single mother of one who is making a huge impact on the single-mothers in the community. 

Rejohan Perkins, 24, says that some of the hardest challenges raising a child with the resources available to her is managing her time. 

“Having to divide my time between work and school, as far as resources it can be really hard as far as rent, gas and everything else,” Perkins said. “I work at least 40 hours a week and it’s just a challenge making sure she has everything my daughter needs.” 

When asked what it is she thinks she could be done to change that, Perkins mentioned the Za’Rae Cayla Foundation which she implemented to give back to the community any way that she can. 

“It is what it is — I am not sure that there is a way to change that, despite all those statistics, you still have to follow your dreams, you still have to keep working hard, stay persistent and do what you have to do in order to take care of your child,” Perkins said.