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A competitive, authentic and global city, Louisville is known as the home of Muhammad Ali, the Kentucky Derby and the Louisville Slugger. With bourbon as its native spirit, the local culinary scene is nationally renowned, while our local food and beverage businesses can take easily products from concept to consumer. As the home of UPS WorldPort and the world’s largest concentration of health and aging innovation companies, Louisville also remains a highly competitive city for advanced manufacturing, logistic, health care and biotechnology.

With its Midwestern sensibilities and southern hospitality, Louisville is the regional economic hub and cultural and artistic heart of 24 surrounding counties in Kentucky and Southern Indiana. We are one of only a dozen U.S. cities that have all five major performing arts.  The city is home to distillery operations for the world’s great bourbons, from Old Forester to Michter’s to Evan Williams. Louisville’s reputation as a hub of innovation for food and bourbon (in addition to other alcoholic and non-alocholic beverages) has earned it accolades, including a top foodie destination in the world from Zagat.

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Paid Leave for Victims of Violence

The ordinance passed in 2022 allows victims of domestic violence and other crimes to take up to seven days paid leave per year.

Office for Women

Louisville Metro Government has long championed gender equity and justice. The City’s Office for Women was founded in 1991 and in 2022, was elevated to  housed under the Office of Equity in the Mayor’s Office. Being housed in the Office of Equity allows the Office for Women to collaborate with other intersectional issues, such as racial and immigrant justice.

The newly expanded mission of the office is to:

  1. Envision a Louisville as a community where women and gender-diverse individuals can thrive, and gender equity is the norm.
  2. Raise the status of women and gender-diverse individuals by advancing gender equity through policy, programs, and education and to foster a culture of shared responsibility by building engagement on gender equity across the Louisville Metro.

The strategic priorities of the OFW are:

1. ECONOMIC EMPOWERMENT: Increase the economic status of women and gender diverse individuals; secure basic needs; break down barriers in workplace, including raising awareness of pay equity, policies that support gender equity, promoting women in traditionally male-dominated fields; fund community initiatives (ex: childcare) that support gender equity.

2. INCREASE COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT AND LEADERSHIP OF WOMEN AND GIRLS: Engage Office for Women Ambassadors in programs, outreach, and advocacy to improve awareness & enhance services for women; engage community in Gender Equity Commission.

3. GENDER MAINSTREAMING: Increase capacity on gender equity and gender mainstreaming across Louisville Metro Government and Louisville 

4. GENDER-BASED VIOLENCE PREVENTION: Increase protective factors & decrease gender-based violence: support funding and initiatives focused on prevention of gender-based violence; promote workplace campaign on prevention of gender-based violence; convene and train on prevention of gender-based violence with a focus on marginalized groups; work to increase protection and decrease gender-based violence.

Programs and Initiatives of the office for women

OFFICE FOR WOMEN AMBASSADORS

The Office for Women Ambassadors is a six-month training program for women and gender diverse who represent the diverse communities across Metro Louisville. Our goal is to have one woman chosen from each of the 26 Metro Council Districts.

Through the program, participants will develop and hone their leadership skills, learn about issues impacting women, and explore government and community programs available to women. The OFW Ambassadors will serve as community liaisons, sharing out information about vital community services and communicating back to government about the needs of women in their communities.

SUPPORTING GIRLS RIGHTS AND EMPOWERMENT

OFW has built partnerships with Georgia Chaffee TAPP School (for teen parents), Grace James Academy and Hudson Middle School, including shadow days, mini grant for TAPP school to support art projects and the development of a guide for new teen moms, and period product drives.   OFW has also provided resources on the rights of pregnant and lactating students and consulted with JCPS Central Office on how to improve policies and practices to support pregnant and lactating students in compliance with Title IX of the Civil Rights Act.

GENDER EQUITY TRAINING

Gender Equity Train the Trainers is a train the trainer curriculum and co-hort that meets at least twice a year and receives ongoing technical assistance from the OFW. The 11 trained individuals are from LMG or are OFW Ambassadors, and are trained to provide a gender equity training to promote all agencies across LMG and Louisville to use a gender equity lens in programming, budgets, policies, marketing, representation and planned/physical environments.   

WOMAN’S EQUALITY DAY

The OFW hosts an annual event celebrating women’s right to vote together with schools and women’s civic organizations. The event will be held on Saturday, August 24, 2024.

GENDER-BASED VIOLENCE PREVENTION

OFW provides virtual training for community health workers, law enforcement and allied professionals in collaboration with Passport by Molina Healthcare on gender-based violence and health equity. The OFW convenes community partners for training on human trafficking, domestic violence, and prevention. OFW serves on the Domestic Violence Prevention and Coordinating Council and Fatality Review. OFW works to increase capacity of local culturally specific programs to prevent and respond to gender-based violence impacting underserved communities.

WORKPLACE VIOLENCE PREVENTION

OFW advocated for passage of the domestic violence/crime victim paid leave ordinance, helped human resources develop and initiate the policy, provided training to all HR reps, hosted a brown bag for staff to learn how to support co-workers and will be working with the Center for Health Equity to study and measure the impact of the leave (similar to the study and report on paid parental leave). OFW is also consulting with other agencies and businesses on how to implement leave for domestic violence victims.

ADDRESSING DIAPER NEED

Nearly 1 in 3 families lack adequate resources to purchase diapers.  Diaper need is correlated with adverse health outcomes, including higher rates of post-partum depression, decreased child-parent attachment, and increased ER visits due to diaper rash.  Diaper need is a barrier to employment, as children cannot go to daycare without diapers.

The Office for Women convene organizations in Louisville to raise awareness and advocate for legislation that addresses diaper need.

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