New Missouri Task Force identifying ways to improve the workplace for women

GRANBY, Mo. –Andrea Wald owns the hello sunshine market in Granby Missouri. One of the town’s many locally-owned stores

She says as a female entrepreneur, she can get lonely due to a lack of gender representation.

“You feel like you’re kind of by yourself and there are certain things that you know maybe you’re struggling with, you don’t have confidence,  just to get that support, from especially other women, can really boost your confidence,” Wald said.

If more of these issues in the state’s workforce relating to women could be addressed and bring more women into the workforce, the state’s economy could grow as much as fifteen percent in the year 2025 according to a university of Missouri study

Which has led a Kansas City nonprofit called United We, short for United Women Empowerment, to create a task force that will be leading town halls across the state to better understand issues surrounding women’s participation in the workforce.

From there, they will be taking their data to create a strategy to create real policy changes in Missouri.

The first town hall will launch Tuesday. And will be held virtually. It was originally going to be held at MSSU in Joplin, but all town halls will be virtual due to Covid-19 cases in the area.

“It’s not only what’s working, but what’s not working in the workplace. and again whether it’s you are interested in starting a new business but may not have the technical skills to be able to launch the business,  so it may be that you need continuing education, and what are those barriers that have been presented to you,” said Wendy Doyle, United We President, and CEO.

Some discussion points the non-profit anticipates, have to do with childcare, healthcare, and education. Through these talks, they hope to create something to improve Missouri women’s workforce experiences.

“It’s really a two-way conversation,” said Doyle. “Truly this is just a discussion, and an opportunity for women to get together, share what they are experiencing…the end result will be for the good of all women of Missouri.”

The event will be on July 20th from 11:30 am-1:00 pm

To register for the Joplin town hall, click here.