In 1976, the average Louisiana woman made 49 cents for every dollar made by her male counterpart. African-American women had incomes one-half those of white women and poverty was pinpointed as a major crisis for thousands of the states mothers and their children. Unfortunately Louisiana women still face serious obstacles in achieving economic equality with men and in attaining a standing comparable to the average for women in the nation as a whole. Today women in Louisiana earn just 64.4 percent of what men in Louisiana make. Louisiana still ranks 49th in the percent of women who live above poverty and 48th in educational attainment.
While these are issues with which the womens movement continues to struggle, the last three decades also have seen some change. The NOW boycott of Louisiana as an unratified state (items 26 and 34) brought an increased awareness of economic power. Change is evident also in the photo of Mindy Milam at a mock funeral for the Head and Master Law (exhibit item 21), the guest editorial by Maurice Durbin about changes in Louisiana law (exhibit item 14), the brochure for a 1976 conference on the application of the federal act for equal credit to the lives of Louisiana women (exhibit item 19), and various publications issued by the National Organization for Women (exhibit items 17 and 20).