Womens Rights
What Does Seven Billion Mean for Women?

What Does Seven Billion Mean for Women?

The UN has projected that the world’s population will reach 7 billion today, a scary milestone amidst increasing global political and economic instability. More people will only place increased pressure on our environment, on the world’s habitats, forests, and resources such as water. But how does investing in women’s rights tie into slowing the world’s...
For Saudi Women, Voting Win Masks Driving Crackdown

For Saudi Women, Voting Win Masks Driving Crackdown

By Trish Calvarese, 9/26/2011 In a national TV address Sunday, Saudi King Abdullah declared an end to the de facto ban on women’s suffrage. Beginning in 2015, women will be able to vote and run in local elections. This seemingly good news, heralded by the AP as “a major advancement for the rights of women,” overshadowed...
A Beating for a Phone: Women Struggle to Access Mobile Technology

A Beating for a Phone: Women Struggle to Access Mobile Technology

People are always shocked to learn how widespread and easily available mobile technology is in “developing nations” like Bangladesh, Kenya, and Afghanistan. When my husband visited my city of birth, Dhaka, last year he could not believe how many people had cell phones in a country where more than half of the population cannot access...
US Assistance to Global Health Programs: The Battle Continues

US Assistance to Global Health Programs: The Battle Continues

The recent hostile budget process targeted women’s health programs globally as much as it did domestically. International family planning was targeted for a 40% cut and UNFPA funding eliminated in the House majority proposals alongside a total elimination of Title X and Planned Parenthood funding. The final amount approved for FY 2011 by Congress for...
Virginity Tests: Time to Let Gender Out of Revolution's Closet

Virginity Tests: Time to Let Gender Out of Revolution’s Closet

There is no doubt that the recent revolution in Egypt got the wheels of the Arab Spring rolling. But just as quickly as women flooded the corners of Tahrir Square and the streets of Cairo in the hopes of a democratic Egypt, their voices were sidelined. This is not uncommon. Even in conservative countries, we...
Starting the Engine: Saudi Women Drive for Their Rights

Starting the Engine: Saudi Women Drive for Their Rights

The spirit of the Arab Spring broke the steel gates of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia today as one by one Saudi women started their engines, defying the country’s notorious ban on women driving, the only place  in the world where women are not permitted to drive. Today’s protest is the culmination of an online...
Help Free Courageous Iranian Activists

Help Free Courageous Iranian Activists

Nobel Peace Prize laureate Shirin Ebadi’s sister, a professor in dentistry, Noushin Ebadi, Mansoureh Shojaee, a founder of the One Million Signatures campaign for women’s equality in Iran, and Morteza Kazemian, a journalist, were arrested the evening of December 29 by Ministry of Intelligence agents.  Ebadi, who is out of the country, released a statement...
Keep Pledges to Afghan Women and Girls: Build Lasting Peace

Keep Pledges to Afghan Women and Girls: Build Lasting Peace

Eleanor Smeal, President of the Feminist Majority Foundation joined Women for Afghan Women in a press conference, on the same day President Obama is announcing the new US policies for Afghanistan and Pakistan, to keep in focus the plight of Afghan women and girls.
The Cup’s Half Full for Middle Eastern Feminists

The Cup’s Half Full for Middle Eastern Feminists

Despite shortcomings in its enforcement, CEDAW (Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women)—the United Nations’ international women’s rights treaty—has brought progress to women in the Middle East, according to women leaders from the region at a recent panel celebrating of its 30th anniversary.
Why Is the FMF Refusing to Abandon the Women and Girls of Afghanistan?

Why Is the FMF Refusing to Abandon the Women and Girls of Afghanistan?

Afghanistan is in deplorable condition. There’s no disputing that. Some feel that we should just walk away.