Change in Attitudes Beliefs and Practices Regarding Gender

There is greater recognition of the value of female choice in Centennial Park community, but not in Colorado City. Centennial Park women have greater opportunities to select a mate from within their own age cohort. In the Le Baron community in Mexico, many mature women are finding that they cannot support themselves and therefore have decided to leave the community and the fundamentalist religion to find employment and security in the United States. In other communities (e.g., Montana and Colorado City), the change in U.S. welfare laws that has restricted the period of time that people can remain on welfare will have a demonstrable impact on most fundamentalist families. Many middle-income and poor men are only able to support large plural families because of the government's subsistence policies. The ending of the federal entitlement will result in more women working outside the community. It will also mean that only the wealthiest members will be able to form a plural family. In a relatively short time, the percentage of men who live in polygynous families will revert to around 20%, similar to that found among the 19th century polygynous Mormons.

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