Shaniyat believes that all women must have the right to control their bodies and that institutions need to respect their choices. Women of all marginalized groups should be able to live in a just and free world with equal pay, access to healthcare, paid parental leave, and safety. No woman should be faced with difficult choices that will hinder their well-being.

To do this, Shaniyat believes that our legislation should focus on reproductive rights, the gender pay gap, and maternity paid leave, as conversation starters. 

Protecting Reproductive Rights

Women’s reproductive rights are human rights. The Hyde Amendment must be repealed. Roe v. Wade should be protected through Federal Law. Women should never have to fear not being able to get proper reproductive care. Through other progressive policies such as Medicare for All, every woman will have access to quality reproductive healthcare services, including safe and legal abortions, birth control, family planning services, and affordable pre-natal and post-natal care.

Closing the Gender Wage Gap

We must close the gender wage gap so that all women have the ability for upward mobility. Gender-wage discrimination creates poverty. A fair environment allows families to advance and grow, both socially and economically. We need to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment, pass legislation prohibiting unequal pay, create institutions to better prosecute employers that violate these laws, and treat women with dignity. It is also important to establish an Independent Federal Workplace Harassment Claims and Investigation Center that gives women a safe space to tell their stories and seek justice. Closing the gender-wage gap and ensuring  just treatment for women is essential to creating an environment of trust and respect

Parental Leave

We must pass federally-mandated parental leave legislation that ensures that new parents are able to carry, take care of, and enjoy spending time with their children in peace without having to worry. Families should be able to care for their infant children without the fear of losing their jobs. Other countries mandate up to 86 weeks of paid maternity leave. The U.S. mandates 0 days. That has to end. Families deserve to be together, especially in the difficult times of pregnancy and early infancy. We need federally-protected and mandated maternity leave, up to a year, and we need it now!