Group to craft, advocate for solutions for Wayne County women
Wayne County commissioners today voted to create a citizen-based Women’s Commission. The volunteer group will be focused on studying issues, making recommendations, and advocating for actions to improve the lives of women across Wayne County.
By looking at areas like, employment, earning power, education, health care and childcare, the Women’s Commission will work collaboratively to identify and promote solutions, while making sure women play a key role in economic growth throughout the county.
“There remains a large disparity in income, educational opportunities, health care and so many other issues affecting women, and it is time to truly develop a realistic plan to address those issues,” Commission Chairwoman Alisha Bell said. “This will be an impactful commission.”
The commission will consist of 19 volunteer members from various backgrounds. Members will serve two-year terms and participate in meetings subject to the state Open Meetings Act. They will not receive compensation.
Each county commissioner will appoint one member and the commission chair will appoint four members, one of whom will be a county commissioner.
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer applauds the action made by the commission.
“I’m confident the Wayne County Women’s Commission will be an effective advocate for women throughout Wayne County and beyond,” Whitmer said. “I look forward to working with the Wayne County Women’s Commission to tackle important issues from pay equity for women to ensuring all Michigan women have access to affordable childcare. Women across Michigan have been on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic, and women will play a key role in Michigan’s economic recovery.”
The idea for the Wayne County Women’s Commission was proposed by former state Rep. and Macomb County Commissioner, Sarah Roberts, who now lives in Wayne County.
“Last summer I felt the need to do something that would be meaningful, impactful and work towards positive change,” Roberts said. “In the past, I created the Macomb County Women’s Commission, and as a state rep, created and fought for public policy supporting women.
“Our goal in establishing the Wayne County Women’s Commission is to positively impact the lives of women across Wayne County. I want to thank Chairwoman Alisha Bell for her leadership, and our entire workgroup for making this a reality.”
The workgroup consisted of Bell; Melissa Daub, commissioner; Felicia Johnson, commission counsel; Edna Bell, former commissioner; Cheryl Bergman, Michigan Women’s Commission CEO; Roberts; and Nicole Stallworth, assistant vice president of the Office of Government and Community Relations at Oakland University.