It should come as no surprise, then, that Social Security represents virtually the only source of income for nearly 40 percent of women over 80, compared to just 28 percent of men. If these women see their monthly checks slashed, where do they turn when they can’t afford food at the end of the month?
This is not the only part of the impending deal that spells trouble for poor women. The Times also reports that it will include $100 billion in cuts to non-defense discretionary spending, or in other words, many vital domestic programs. But these programs have already been cut by $900 billion from laws enacted last year. As I’ve previously written, this spending may sound abstract but represents lifelines for many low-income Americans. Women disproportionately rely on these programs, particularly those such as the Women, Infants and Children program, Head Start and child care assistance.