“As many of you know, my story is unique,” Ms. Haaland said in her address to the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. “This historic nature of my confirmation is not lost on me, but I will say it’s not about me,” she said.
Asked about Women’s History Month, she told In Her Words:
“Women are fierce — we break barriers, run companies, make scientific discoveries, raise families, and lift each other up. But the fact is, discriminatory policies blocked women from fully participating in our country for generations. It led to disparities in wages, representation and opportunities that we are still tackling. Though we have more Native women serving in Congress, a woman of color in the vice president’s office, and women making moves across the country, we still have to recognize that the disadvantages that we face are created by a system designed to keep us out, and that, coupled with systemic racism, makes Women’s History Month all the more important.”
Angela Ceseña, executive director of Latina SafeHouse
Asked how she is doing, Angela Ceseña will tell you she is “cautiously optimistic” and “really tired.”
Latina SafeHouse, where Ms. Ceseña works, provides bilingual services to Latinx survivors of domestic violence and their families. But this past year was the first time in the organization’s 22-year history that the group had to start a wait list for survivors in need of services.
In a normal year, Ms. Ceseña isn’t able to take much time off from work. This past year, she didn’t even consider it.
During recent months, she said, some of the most severe types of cases have also had the largest increase: the need for emergency rapid rehousing, and shelter for women and children who are experiencing, or are at risk of experiencing, homelessness. In some ways, Ms. Ceseña says she feels she is “set up — and expected — to fail.” At the same time, she describes a gravity and an obligation to her work that keep her going, keep her showing up each day.