Monthly archive November, 2011
Conscience Clause: Preserving Morality or Creating Immorality?

Conscience Clause: Preserving Morality or Creating Immorality?

by Elizabeth Beaulac, Outreach Intern, National Women’s Law Center August brought with it a victory for women’s health. It was announced that all new health insurance plans would be required to coverage preventive services such as contraceptive coverage. However, in not so great news, the mandate included language that would allow religious employers to deny...
Should Catholic Bishops Have The Right To Control Your Life?

Should Catholic Bishops Have The Right To Control Your Life?

By Janet Hill, Coalition of Labor Union Women (CLUW), National CLUW Vice President (United Steelworkers) Catholic bishops are pressuring the Obama administration to dilute the rule proposed by Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to allow women access to birth control without paying out of pocket. There is a narrow exemption that allows religious...

Nigerian Senate Passes Bill Criminalizing Gay Marriage

Yesterday the Nigerian Senate passed a bill to prohibit same-sex marriage, as well as gay advocacy groups and public displays of same-sex affection. The bill imposes a 14 year sentence for those who are convicted of homosexuality and 10 year sentences for anyone who assists same-sex couples in marrying. The Nigerian House of Representatives will...

Violence Against Women Act Introduced for Reauthorization Today Senators Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Mike Crapo (R-ID) will introduce a bipartisan bill today to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). The Violence Against Women Act is due to expire at the end of this year. VAWA was originally drafted by then-Senator Joe Biden and was...
Women’s Basic Health Coverage Is Not For Sale

Women’s Basic Health Coverage Is Not For Sale

by Miri Cypers, Jewish Women International Nearly one week after the defeat of the Mississippi “personhood initiative,” when the state of women’s reproductive rights in our country seemed like it could not be any more threatened, various news outlets have published an incredibly troubling story that requires our immediate attention. This Monday, the New York...
HERVotes Blog Carnival: Women v. the Bishops

HERVotes Blog Carnival: Women v. the Bishops

by Kim Gandy, Feminist Majority Foundation Welcome to the sixth #HERvotes blog carnival on the effort by the Catholic bishops to allow some institutions to refuse, under the Affordable Care Act, birth control coverage without co-pays to students and employees of  hospitals, universities, and other institutions, or other religious affiliated or connected institutions such as...

Federal Judge Blocks NC Anti- Abortion License Plates

On Monday, U.S. District Judge James Fox issued an injunction temporarily blocking North Carolina from issuing anti-abortion license plates, as the new state law that allows for the production of the plates is being challenged. The American Civil Liberties Union of North Carolina (ACLU-NCLF) filed a lawsuit in September, arguing that the production of the...

OH Senate Republicans to Push Heartbeat Bill

Ohio Senate President Tom Niehaus (R) announced that the Senate Republicans plan  to advance a  “heartbeat bill”  that has already passed the House.  If passed by the Senate and signed by the Governor, the law would ban abortions after the fetal heartbeat is detected.  This could occur as early as 6 weeks following conception before...

AL School Board to End Single-Sex Classes

The Tallapoosa County School Board in Alabama announced that it will end its single sex classes at the end of this school year following the American Civil Liberties Union’s (ACLU) allegations that the program violates Title IX, a law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in all levels of education. Mie Lewis, a...

NJ Nurses Challenge Hospital Abortion Policy in Court

A dozen New Jersey nurses filed a lawsuit in federal court against the University of Medicine & Dentistry of New Jersey alleging that it broke state and national law by requiring that the nurses provide pre- and post- operative care for abortion patients, despite the nurses’ objections on religious or moral grounds. However, the hospital...

Study Finds Women Underrepresented and Oversexualized in Hollywood Films

A new study entitled “Gender Inequality in Popular Films” was released by researchers at the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School of Communications and Journalism and found that women are often underrepresented and oversexualized in Hollywood films, with 33.8 percent of teen girl characters appearing in revealing clothing and 28.2 percent appearing with “exposed skin...

MO School District to Halt Single-Sex Classes

Adrian school district in western Missouri announced that it will stop offering single-sex classes. The school district, located approximately 50 miles from Kansas City, began offering single-sex math and communications classes this fall to students in sixth through eighth grade. The decision came after the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) threatened to file a lawsuit...

President Obama Signs Law to Protect Peace Corps Volunteers

On Monday, President Obama signed the Kate Puzey Peace Corps Volunteer Protection Act, legislation designed to protect Peace Corps Volunteers during their tours of service. The law provides “whistleblower protection” for Peace Corps workers and requires that the Peace Corps take measures to reduce sexual assault risk and establish a response protocol to protect volunteers....

Virginia Delegate Introduces Personhood Amendment

On Monday, Virginia state Delegate Bob Marshall (R-Prince William County) filed a “personhood” bill, which states that life begins at conception and proposes to give constitutional rights to a fertilized egg. The bill proposes to give “unborn children at every stage of development…all the rights, privileges, and immunities available to other persons, citizens, and residents...
Does China Have the Solution for the Population Crisis?  Not Even Close

Does China Have the Solution for the Population Crisis? Not Even Close

by Meghan Yee On October 31, the world population reached 7 billion. According to one Chinese demographer, however, if not for China’s one-child policy, the world population would have hit that number five years ago. China has the largest population on earth with 1.4 billion people. However, since 1979, the National Population and Family Planning...

Decision Expected Soon on Broadening Religious Exemption for Contraceptive Coverage

A decision by the Obama Administration is expected soon, possibly before Thanksgiving, on broadening the religious exemption for contraceptive coverage. Women’s rights and pro-choice groups, including the Feminist Majority Foundation, Planned Parenthood Action Fund, the National Women’s Law Center, the National Council of Jewish Women, the National Organization for Women (NOW), and NARAL Pro-Choice America,...

Rapes on the Rise in Somali Camps

In the past two months, the number of rape cases has increased dramatically in camps in the Somali town of Galkayo as a result of decreased security, a “culture of impunity,” and a rise in the number of attacks on internally displaced people (IDPs). Silje Heitmann, a gender-based violence specialist for Somalia at the United...

Morocco’s Proposed Constitution Amendments Support Women’s Rights

Morocco’s parliamentary election, to be held on November 25, will determine if new provisions, which would greatly benefit women, will be adopted in the nation’s constitution.The provisions promote women’s economic, social, and cultural rights, according to Women’s eNews. Zahra Chagaf, a Moroccan politician, stated, “Thanks to the new constitution, all of women’s rights are based...

Nishimoto Pays $400,000 in Sex Discrimination Settlement

Nishimoto Trading Company, an Asian food importer based in Southern California, has agreed to pay $400,000 to 71 women in conciliation settlement with the US Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP), which found the company had engaged in sex discrimination. OFCCP found that Tyson Fresh Meats violated Executive Order 11246 “by...

CA Supreme Court Rules In Favor of Prop. 8 Defense Case

On Thursday, California’s Supreme Court ruled that opponents of gay marriage are legally entitled to defend Proposition 8 in court, stating that Proposition 8 proponents have the legal authority to defend the measure. In September, the California Supreme Court heard arguments concerning whether ProtectMarriage, supporters of Proposition 8, banning same-sex marriage in California, have standing...