Boston University Law Review published an issue on the topic “The End of Men” and quite a few of the articles relate to poverty law. For example:
The End of Men or the Rebirth of Class?
June Carbone & Naomi Cahn
Daniel L. Hatcher
TANF and the End (Maybe?) of Poor Men
Khiara M. Bridges
(and others, all at the first link)
New Book: Kathryn Edin & Timothy J. Nelson, Doing the Best I Can: Fatherhood in the Inner City (2013). Amazon link here. Overview below:
Across the political spectrum, unwed fatherhood is denounced as one of the leading social problems of today. Doing the Best I Can is a strikingly rich, paradigm-shifting look at fatherhood among inner-city men often dismissed as “deadbeat dads.” Kathryn Edin and Timothy J. Nelson examine how couples in challenging straits come together and get pregnant so quickly—without planning. The authors chronicle the high hopes for forging lasting family bonds that pregnancy inspires, and pinpoint the fatal flaws that often lead to the relationship’s demise. They offer keen insight into a radical redefinition of family life where the father-child bond is central and parental ties are peripheral.
Drawing on years of fieldwork, Doing the Best I Can shows how mammoth economic and cultural changes have transformed the meaning of fatherhood among the urban poor. Intimate interviews with more than 100 fathers make real the significant obstacles faced by low-income men at every step in the familial process: from the difficulties of romantic relationships, to decision-making dilemmas at conception, to the often celebratory moment of birth, and finally to the hardships that accompany the early years of the child’s life, and beyond.
New Book: Judith Levine, Ain’t No Trust: How Bosses, Boyfriends, and Bureaucrats Fail Low-Income Mothers and Why It Matters (2013). Overview below:
Ain’t No Trust explores issues of trust and distrust among low-income women in the U.S.—at work, around childcare, in their relationships, and with caseworkers—and presents richly detailed evidence from in-depth interviews about our welfare system and why it’s failing the very people it is designed to help.
By comparing low-income mothers’ experiences before and after welfare reform, Judith A. Levine probes women’s struggles to gain or keep jobs while they simultaneously care for their children, often as single mothers. By offering a new way to understand how structural factors impact the daily experiences of poor women, Ain’t No Trust highlights the pervasiveness of distrust in their lives, uncovering its hidden sources and documenting its most corrosive and paralyzing effects. Levine’s critique and conclusions hold powerful implications for scholars and policymakers alike.
Call-for-Papers & Conference: Emory Law School is hosting “The Feminism and Legal Theory Project at 30: Transformation of the Family and the Recognition and Regulation of Intimate Lives” on Dec. 6-7, 2013 and the call-for-papers deadline is Sept. 12, 2013.
Op-Ed / Article: Stephan Marche, Home Economics: The Link Between Work-Life Balance and Income Equality, The Atlantic, June 19, 2013.
Copyright 2013 Ezra Rosser
New Article: Gabriela Steier, Womenomics for Nursing Growth: Making the Case for Work Time Flexibility and Mother-Friendlier Workplaces, 21 Buffalo Journal of Gender, Law & Social Policy 111 (2013). Abstract below:
Gender bias at work often coerces breastfeeding working mothers to choose between their baby or their job. The forced choice between private and work life irreconcilably separates motherhood from a woman’s career, giving rise to the Mommy Wage Gap and the Maternal Wall. Consequently, the separation of work and family life has negative impacts on both the mother and her child. These negative impacts also bear on public health and the economy on a large scale. The more unaccommodating workplaces are, the stricter the separation between work and family life and the more permanent the choice a working mother has to make. Such unaccommodating workplaces thus force breastfeeding working mothers to either wean their children too early or to opt-out. Thus, increasing work-time flexibility for working parents, and especially breastfeeding mothers, would allow working mothers to breastfeed their children for the recommended period of at least six months after birth. The current federal labor laws, the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), are insufficient in protecting breastfeeding-working mothers from the gender bias and aggravated work-life conflict. If more working mothers were able to breastfeed their babies for the recommended six months, the government could save public health care costs and use these savings for reinvestments to fuel economic recovery. By allowing working breastfeeding mothers to bring the private and public spheres closer together, and to thereby attain greater work-life life, businesses and companies will be empowered to increase efficiency, productivity, and eventually profitability. This paper evaluates some strategies to increase profitability by providing greater work-time flexibility.
New Article: Angela Littwin, Escaping Battered Credit: A Proposal for Repairing Credit Reports Damaged by Domestic Violence, 161 U. Penn. L. Rev. 363 (2013). Abstract below:
Debt and domestic violence are connected in ways not previously imagined. A new type of debt—which I have labeled “coerced debt”—is emerging from abusive relationships. Coerced debt occurs when the abuser in a violent relationship obtains credit in the victim’s name via fraud or coercion. It ranges from secretly taking out credit cards in victims’ names to coercing victims into signing loan documents to tricking victims into relinquishing their rights to the family home. As wide ranging as these tactics can be, one consequence consistently emerges: ruined credit ratings.
Coerced debt wreaks havoc on credit scores, which is particularly problematic because the use of credit reports is no longer confined to traditional lenders. Employers, landlords, and utility companies all make extensive use of credit scores when screening potential customers. Thus, a credit score that has been damaged by coerced debt can make it prohibitively difficult for victims to obtain employment, housing, or basic utilities—all of which are requirements for establishing an independent household.
In this Article, I propose amending the Fair Credit Reporting Act to allow victims of coerced debt to repair their credit reports. My proposal would enable family courts to rule on whether alleged coerced debt is, in fact, coerced. The victim could then submit the court’s certification to the credit reporting agencies, which would block the coerced debt from her credit report to the extent that the block did not unduly harm her creditors. My proposal would build a bridge between the deci-sionmakers already determining issues related to coerced debt and the credit reports that victims need to have reformed in order to move beyond the abuse.
Call for Symposium Papers: Gender Matters:Women, Social Policy and the 2012 Election. April 2, 2013 at American University Washington College of Law, Washington, DC
The American University Journal of Gender, Social Policy & the Law and Women and the Law Program invite papers for a symposium on gender, social policy and the election of 2012. The organizers welcome papers that explore how current or proposed social polices affect the lives of women and their families, and/or that analyze what role, if any, rhetoric about those polices may have played in the recent election. Abstracts from professors or practitioners (sorry, no student pieces) addressing gender and health care, labor and employment, taxation, fiscal policy and social welfare or other relevant social policy are due by midnight January 7, 2013. Papers selected will be presented at a symposium on April 2, 2013 at American University Washington College of Law, and strongly considered for publication. To read the full Call for Papers and to submit an abstract online, please visit the symposium website. Please contact the organizers at email@example.com with any questions.
New Article: Bridgette Baldwin, Shadow Works and Shadow Markets: How Privatization of Welfare Services Produces an Alternative Market, 34 Western New England L. Rev. 445 (2012). Abstract below:
The Author attempts to fuse Ivan Illich’s misplaced ideas of gender roles with how privatization of welfare services has legitimized a shadow economy and work through mandated community service jobs. The Article provides a historical perspective of how social services were handled, leading to the current cost/benefit legacy of welfare privatization utilized by the Wisconsin Works program (W-2). Wisconsin’s program requires women recipients to engage in volunteer work, creating a subsidized labor force for private agencies based on the presumption that work, even meaningless and menial tasks, establishes job-readiness for women on welfare. The Author suggests that we need to begin thinking about how to recreate the framework for providing public services. The community service component of W2 and its actual function powerfully demonstrates how W-2 mothers have become a reserve labor force. But at the same time the contours of W-2 make reserve labor status profitable, not for the mothers, but for the sub-contracted agencies. The relationship between W-2 mothers, the status of community service, and the position of sub-contracted agencies have generated a shadow market as a consequence of welfare privatization. The ways in which these women are held captive to a world without work, a world without skill building, and limited ways out become the grounds upon which sub-contracting agencies generate profit. Under the shroud of “cost effectiveness,” private agencies are reaping the financial windfall of “pimping” the state based on their ability to market their skills at converting welfare mothers into low-wage workers.
Symposium Articles Published: UCLA Law Review, “Overpoliced and Underprotected: Women, Race, and Criminalization.”
-Thanks to Concurring Opinions Blog for the heads up!