HARTFORD — Gov. Ned Lamont has created a Governor’s Council on Women and Girls to champion legislation and review state policies to advance women throughout the state.
The Council, which Lamont’s office announced Friday, is modeled off a national body by the same name that former President Barack Obama created and a similar one in New York State.
The Council is chaired by Lt. Gov. Susan Bysiewicz, with Melissa McCaw, secretary of the Office of Policy and Management, as vice chair.
“Hopefully this shows the people of Connecticut the commitment that the governor and I have to making sure that we advance women and girls,” Bysiewicz said in an interview Friday. “Women’s issues are economic issues. If we pass paid family leave, if we make sure women are paid equally for their work as men, if we raise the minimum wage, then we are advancing families across the state.”
The council will comprise commissioners from all state agencies, the state’s constitutional officers and four legislators, one from each caucus. Senate Minority Leader Len Fasano, R-North Haven, appointed Sen. Heather Somers, R-Groton — the only female Republican senator.
The group will meet every other month to plan legislation and review government policies and practices with a goal of ending gender discrimination and supporting the needs of women. It will have subcommittees on education, particularly science and technology; economic opportunity and workforce equity; leadership; and health and safety.
The Council will collaborate with the private sector and with the General Assembly’s Commission on Women, Children, and Seniors. It was a recommendation of the Women and Girl’s policy group that presented to Lamont’s transition team in December.
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