How Women Legislators Help States Become More Supportive Of Older Citizens by Joanne Connor Green and Charles Lockhart at The Society Pages
A stronger presence of women in state legislatures turns out to be good for older men and women. Just as female legislators weigh in on behalf of meeting the needs of families with children, they also appear more likely than male legislators to further policies that make a real difference in medical care and community support for senior residents. As the United States moves deeper into an era where support and care for older people will be an ever more central concern in society and public policy, the growing presence of elected female legislators will almost certainly help the United States face these issues and find family-friendly solutions. Toward the end of life as well as at its beginning and during the middle, women in office seem sensitive to the practical concerns of families and individuals in need of support. Across America, the states whose voters more often send women to serve in their legislatures are therefore likely to be the states best prepared to meet the growing challenges of an aging population.
We Need More Women in Legislatures Worldwide, Period by Rosemarie Clouston at the Georgetown Public Policy Review
… Ester Duflo and her colleagues have shown that in a randomized situation in India where women were put in charge of local governing councils, these bodies invested more in public services prioritized by women (e.g., drinking water) than when men were in charge. They also found that in areas with female council heads, teenage girls had greater career aspirations for themselves than girls living in areas with councils headed by men. Not only does it appear that women deliver policies for women but they may also politically empower their gender, particularly in future generations, so the impact may not be immediately evident in many studies. Researchers at the University of Notre Dame have studied this relationship between female legislators and political activity across developed democracies and found that women and girls are “more likely to discuss politics, and younger women [anticipate becoming] more politically active [in adulthood] when there are more women in parliament.”
Facts about women legislators in the U.S. at The National Foundation for Women Legislators