Information and referral was one of the first services instituted. The range of problems facing women in the county immediately became apparent including: family violence; discrimination in the workplace; discrimination in housing; rape and sexual assault; poverty; and a lack of childcare. Over two decades, the role of the Office for Women in the county has grown to include Public Policy and Advocacy, Education and Research, and Direct Services.
The Office for Women most often acts as an entry point into Westchester's system of services. Women and men call us when they do not know where to turn for help for someone they care about, often themselves. They also call us because of our neutral connotation: we do not serve a particular socioeconomic group nor provide mental health services.
Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., we are available to everyone. Calls come in from all parts of the county and from persons of all ages, backgrounds, and situations. By calling the Helpline, callers access the services offered not only by the Office for Women, but the array of services available in the area. We also provide information on rights and how to protect or assert them.
Operation Talent Bank: The Office for Women coordinates a network of public and private agencies offering employment assistance and training to share information on jobs, employers, programs, and services. We have a computerized system designed to link women with available jobs by skill level.
Public Education and Research
Information is power. Information enables people to make informed decisions about their personal lives, their interpersonal relationships, their jobs and careers, their finances--indeed, all aspects of their lives. We also believe we are empowered when we make conscious choices from a range of options. So, as our lives become more complex, the need for information becomes greater.
Accurate and comprehensive information is therefore a top priority of the Office for Women. We provide information through:
Public Policy and Advocacy
As the range of women's roles has expanded, society has recognized women's rights in the performance of political, social, and economic roles. Women's greater participation in society has also compelled both public and private sectors to address the needs of women and families.
Underlying these changes is the necessity to voice these concerns and advocate for needed changes. Through our Public Policy and Advocacy Division, we seek to:
Aside from our efforts as an individual agency, we also seek to bring about change through: