The Feminist Majority today applauds President Obama for leading the charge on creating greater economic opportunity and security for women and families nationwide in his annual State of the Union Address.

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During last night’s speech, President Obama maintained his clear intention to move forward – with or without the cooperation of Congress – on issues of paramount importance to women: increasing the minimum wage, curbing the rising costs of college tuition, ensuring equal pay for equal work and allowing paid family leave.

“The message is clear – Congress will no longer be able to derail economic progress,” said Feminist Majority president Eleanor Smeal. “That’s good news for women who make up around 60 percent of minimum wage workers. It’s good news for the 40 percent of households with children that rely on women to be the sole or primary source of family income, and good news for those women who make up the majority of college students around the nation.”

During this “year of action,” while continuing to push for legislation that would increase the federal minimum wage for all workers, the President asserted that he would issue an Executive Order to raise the minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10 for those working on new federal contracts for services.

“Women and families across the nation deserve meaningful compensation for a day’s work,” Smeal said. “Raising the minimum wage for employees working on new federal contracts is an important step in creating opportunities for financial security for those who need it most.”

President Obama touched on a wide range of other feminist issues, including immigration reform, environmental protection, continued health care expansion, gun violence, voting rights and the importance of the Afghan Bilateral Security Agreement. Read the full text of the President’s speech here.