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This Week's Facts:

-Celebrate Women's History Month in March

-Commission for Women to Present the 2013 Torchbearer Awards

-Tips to Share During National Consumer Protection Week

Census: Women's History Month

Women's History Month Fast Facts

The total of active duty women in the U.S. military as of Nov. 30, 2012. Source: U.S. Department of Defense, Selected Manual Statistics, annual, and unpublished data.

7.5 million
The number of U.S. workers employed by women-owned businesses in 2007.

Percent (or approximately 72.6 million) American females 16 and older participated in the U.S. labor force in 2012. Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Current Population Survey

$1.2 trillion
The amount of revenue generated by women-owned businesses in 2007. Source: 2007 Survey of Business Owners

Friday Facts
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Katharine Springer
State Data Center Coordinator

Kim Brown-Harden
Federal Documents Coordinator

Andrea Glenn
State Documents Coordinator

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Celebrate Women's History Month in March  

womenshistorymonth.govWomen’s History Month had its origins as a national celebration in 1981 when Congress passed Pub. L. 97-28 which authorized and requested the President to proclaim the week beginning March 7, 1982 as “Women’s History Week."  Throughout the next five years, Congress continued to pass joint resolutions designating a week in March as "Women’s History Week."  In 1987 after being petitioned by the National Women’s History Project, Congress passed Pub. L. 100-9 which designated the month of March 1987 as “Women’s History Month."  Between 1988 and 1994, Congress passed additional resolutions requesting and authorizing the President to proclaim March of each year as Women’s History Month.  Since 1995, Presidents Clinton, Bush, and Obama have issued a series of annual proclamations designating the month of March as “Women’s History Month.”  For more information and legislative documents relating to Women’s History Month, visit the Library of Congress’ Women’s History Month resources. 

Women have made significant contributions in every arena - science and art, business and technology, scholarship and education. Some women have gained national recognition while other quiet heroes work behind the scenes. The Library of Congress celebrates Women’s History Month with activities, events, and exhibits such as A National Policy of Nagging, which celebrates in tongue-and-cheek style the 100 year anniversary of the suffragists’ parade on Washington; the Women of Four Wars veterans’ exhibit; and the Elizabeth Murray Project about an early American self-made businesswoman described as a female Benjamin Franklin. Also included are educational resources to help teach children of all ages about the significance of Women’s History. These links are a chance to remember and celebrate the women who are everyday heroes.  

Commission for Women to Present the 2013 Torchbearer Awards

Indiana Commission for WomenThe Indiana Commission for Women (ICW) was originally established in 1992 by an Executive Order and was later enacted into law in 1996 by the Indiana General Assembly with Senate Bill 500. The Commission's duties include assessing the needs of Indiana women and their families to promote the full participation of Indiana women in all aspects of society. The Commission advocates for the removal of legal and social barriers, cooperates with organizations and agencies to combat discrimination, and identifies and recognizes contributions made by Indiana women to their community, state, and nation.  The ICW also monitors legislation that can impact women and their families and gathers, studies, and disseminates information though publications, public hearings, and conferences (Indiana Code 4-23-25).

Each March, in conjunction with Women’s History Month, the ICW presents the Torchbearer Awards. The 2013 Torchbearer Awards Program will be Wednesday, March 6, 2013 in the Indiana Government Center North's Auditorium. Click here, if you are interested in attending.

According to ICW, the Torchbearer Awards recognizes Hoosier women who have overcome or removed barriers to equality or whose achievements have contributed to making our state a better place in which to live, work, and raise a family.  Recipients are women who have been pioneers in their industries, have inspirational stories that set the standard for other women, have faced tough choices, demonstrated character, and have made significant contributions to their communities and/or to the State of Indiana. 

The 2012 Torchbearer recipients were:

Diane M. Buyer, DDS, Indianapolis
Laura Ciriello‐Benedict, Indianapolis
Carol Dawson, Jeffersonville
Cathy Holloway‐Hill, Charlestown
Lisa Jeff, Indianapolis
Melissa Martin, Indianapolis

Carolyn Pearson, Delphi (Heart of Indiana)
Dana Renay, Carmel
Dr. Marilyn S. Skinner, Kokomo
Judge Viola Taliaferro, Bloomington (Lifetime Achievement)
Vernell Thomas, Bloomington/Crane

Tips to Share During National Consumer Protection Week

National Consumer Protection WeekSales pitches and financial advice come at you from every direction—by phone, by mail, and every time you read an ad, go online or turn on your TV. It can seem like a full time job just to sort it all out, but you don’t have to do it alone. Government agencies, consumer organizations and advocacy groups join forces during National Consumer Protection Week, March 3-9 with shopping strategies and consumer tips to empower you to make better buying decisions and protect your rights in the marketplace.

DID YOU KNOW: Start learning now with these tips from

  • A free mobile app can help you check any product or vehicle, new or used, to see if it’s been recalled or has safety complaints? Keep up with recent recalls of things you may have around the house or check on that great thrift shop bargain before you buy. Use the app and mobile site to search by product type and brand name.

  • When your wallet is lost or stolen, there are eight steps you need to take right away (PDF)? A thief won’t waste time trying to cash in on your loss. Learn now so you’ll be ready to protect your identity and your credit as soon as your wallet goes missing.

  • A new federal agency is working to eliminate deceptive and unfair lending practices? Established in 2010, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) works to make sure providers of mortgages, credit cards, student loans and banking services market their products honestly, clearly and legally. Learn more about their work, and their simple tips for protecting yourself.

  • Scammers see tough economic times as an opportunity? Job scams are abundant, as swindlers “guarantee” you an unadvertised job, try to get you to pay for their placement services or tell you that you can get rich by working from home. Learn more about financial scams and saving money at the Federal Trade Commission’s

  • There’s a formula for complaining effectively? If you’re not satisfied with a product or service, use the Consumer Action Handbook’s sample complaint letter to let the company know where they went wrong and how you want them to fix it. To get the free Handbook or its Spanish counterpart, la Guía del Consumidor, visit the consumer protection sections of or

You can ask government experts your consumer questions during a special National Consumer Protection Week online Q&A session. Experts from and the Federal Trade Commission will connect you with government resources to answer your questions during the live event on Wednesday, March 6 from 2-3pm EST. Find out about the latest scams, how to protect your family from identity theft, and more. To participate, submit your questions in advance or during the event on’s Facebook page or on Twitter using the hashtag #NCPW.


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