On February 17th, President Obama signed an act that made it easier for states to give unemployment benefits to low-wage and part-time workers. By August 2009, 34 states had enacted these measures. A large portion of the group that benefits is women, including many single mothers working to support a family.

The changes correct policies that were based on a model of full-time, male breadwinners. This is positive in that it attends to a neglected segment of the population. But what does it mean that women still make up the majority of low-paid and temporary workers? Yes, the government should provide aid to as many of the jobless as possible. But we also need to step back and think about why women - often black and hispanic women - tend to struggle more to maintain economic self-sufficiency. Perhaps this measure is a band-aid to a deep problem, rather than a long-term solution.

To read more about this, check out Jobless Benefits Will Now Reach More Women at Womensenews.org.