YWCA USA Responds to the 2019 State of the Union

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YWCA USA Responds to the 2019 State of the Union

Categories: Advocacy, Mission, News

YWCA USA CEO Alejandra Y. Castillo issued the following statement in response to the 2019 State of the Union address:

President Trump’s proclamations of unity during his 2019 State of the Union address stands in stark contrast to the reality of this administration’s actions.

This year our nation has been ripped apart by divisive rhetoric and deliberate administrative actions that have fueled a tragic humanitarian crisis at our nation’s borders, allowed the unfettered rise of white nationalism, created the longest-ever shutdown of government services, and perpetuated the deep-seated gender-based harassment and violence that still permeates our society.

Our nation needs more than empty platitudes about “a new era of cooperation” and “reject[ing] the politics of revenge.” We need leadership that will exemplify unity through words and deeds — and bring a shared vision for health, security and prosperity for all.

Instead, standing before the most diverse Congress our nation has ever seen and with the pain of so many of his policies still fresh in our lives, President Trump recommitted to an agenda that is deeply harmful to women, girls and marginalized people.

This State of the Union makes clear that YWCA’s leadership and advocacy for women, girls, and marginalized communities must continue — and it will.

Today, more than ever, YWCA continues to build off our 160-year history of advocacy to:

  • Fight for equal pay and safe, fair workplaces
  • Stand with all survivors as we work to end domestic and sexual violence
  • Protect those who seek refuge and safety in our country, and stop families from being torn apart
  • Ensure women get the health care they need, with autonomy over their own bodies—and actual protections for preexisting conditions
  • Champion effective legislation like the Paid Family and Medical Leave Act, which meets the real-world needs of workers, rather than half-measures like the White House’s parental leave proposal that excludes 75 percent of workers

And we will continue to embrace an inclusive vision that honors the rich diversity of our nation — a nation united in support of safe, healthy, and empowered futures for all women, girls, and marginalized people.


YWCA USA is on a mission to eliminate racism, empower women, stand up for social justice, help families, and strengthen communities. We are one of the oldest and largest women’s organizations in the nation, serving over 2 million women, girls, and their families.

YWCA has been at the forefront of the most pressing social movements for more than 160 years — from voting rights to civil rights, from affordable housing to pay equity, from violence prevention to health care reform. Today, we combine programming and advocacy in order to generate institutional change in three key areas: racial justice and civil rights, empowerment and economic advancement of women and girls, and health and safety of women and girls. Learn more: www.ywca.org.