May 27, 1917 — First speech in the US House of Representatives, Washington DC
[Speaking about the Food and Fuel Control Act, enacted August 10, 1917, also called the Lever Act or the Lever Food Act]
Women officials, with their understanding and sympathy for home problems, will inspire a confidence in the home woman, and will encourage her to cooperate with the Government in this emergency.
Women as housekeepers must learn to think of food in carload lots, in transit, in storage, in the board of trade, and in the national markets as well as in the small portions on the family table.
By using women officials to aid in this work we will concentrate the attention of all women on the larger bearings of the food problems. It will bring the home woman into closer cooperation with the Government.
It would be to the advantage of the Government to utilize the services of trained women in the place where they would county the most for the country during this present crisis and also in the future.
Food conservation on a national scale is but the natural outgrowth of woman’s traditional work. Women in the past have been concerned with the immediate preparation of food from one meal to another. They must now consider the food supply for the year. They must be individually concerned with the food supply for the whole country. And now, as we face this international problem of feeding the people, the responsibility is place on all of us.
Women must take an intelligent and responsible share of the world’s work if we are to see that all the people are fed all the time.
Source: The Suffragist, Vol. V., No. 71, June 2, 1917, p. 4.