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Report: Aboriginal Women, Girls in Canada Targets for Human Trafficking
 
Aboriginal women and girls are easy prey for human traffickers because they are more likely to suffer from poverty, drug addictions and mental-health problems, says a newly disclosed report, CBC reported Sept. 19. The Public Safety Canada study shed new light on how women and girls are forced into the sex trade by pimps acting as boyfriends, small, loosely defined gangs and even members of their own families. The previously unreleased research is bound to add fuel to the fire raging in Canada over the Conservative government's refusal to hold a national inquiry into murdered and missing aboriginal women and girls.
 
 
White House to Unveil Campaign Against Campus Assault 
 
President Obama is scheduled to announce Friday a nationwide public service campaign aimed at urging young people to do more to prevent campus sexual assaults, The New York Times reported Sept. 19. The White House promises the campaign will enlist celebrities to help mobilize youth behind the mission. The campaign, called "It’s on Us,” should attract special attention in the wake of recent incidents of domestic violence by N.F.L. players.
 
 
Angelina Jolie's Surgery Sparked Surge in Breast Cancer Tests
 
Angelina Jolie's decision to make public her double mastectomy more than doubled the number of women in Britain seeking to have genetic breast cancer tests, according to a study, Reuters reported Sept. 19. Researchers studied 21 clinics and regional genetic centers and found there were 4,847 referrals for testing in June and July last year compared to 1,981 in the same period of 2012. In May last year, Jolie announced her surgery, saying she acted after testing positive for a mutation of the BRCA1 gene that significantly increases the risk of breast cancer.
 
 
Report Calls for Immediate Action to Protect Syrian Women and Girls
 
The international community has been strong on rhetoric but weak on follow through when it comes to the protection of Syrian women and girls, finds a Sept. 18 report. Authors call for the interests of these women and girls to become a priority for humanitarian programming. Published by  the International Rescue, the extensive report, “Are We Listening? Acting on our commitments to women and girls,” draws on over 70,000 conversations with women and girls, and 200 interviews in Syria, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey, detailing chronic abuse and harassment experienced by these women and girls over the past three years. Since the beginning of the deadly Syrian conflict in March 2011, many Syrian women are facing a large range of issues including sexual exploitation and harassment, domestic violence, and early and forced marriage. "This report is a wake-up call that resolutions and pledges are not being turned into meaningful help for too many women in the eye of a Syrian humanitarian storm, ” said  David Miliband, CEO and president of the IRC. 
 
The report makes recommendations to ensure greater protection, including a call for the U.N. to launch an evaluation of the humanitarian community’s implementation of minimum standards needed to keep women and girls safer. Read more in the Women's eNews series "Collateral Damage Syria: Women and Girls Fleeing Violence."
 
 
Royal and Ancient Golf Club Approves Women as Members
 
The Royal and Ancient Golf Club at St. Andrews, Scotland, is no longer just for men, The New York Times reported Sept. 18. More than three-quarters of the club's 2,500 members worldwide voted, with 85 percent in favor to admit women in the club. 
 
 
Texas Executes Woman Convicted of Murder
 
Lisa Coleman has become the 15th woman to be put to death in the U.S. since capital punishment was restored in 1976, reported I24News Sept. 18. Convicted murderer Coleman, 38, was put to death for kidnapping and killing in 2004 the 9-year-old son of her live-in girlfriend. She was one of only a handful of women on death row.
 
 
Raw Beauty NYC Tries to Transform Disability Stereotypes
 
Raw Beauty NYC, a visual arts project designed to inspire the public to create new perceptions and transform stereotypes by expanding awareness of women with physical challenges, opens on Sept. 20 in New York City, according to a press statement. Danielle Sheypuk, a disability-rights advocate and wheelchair-dependent fashion model, will be featured at the opening reception at the ACA Galleries.
 
 
NFL's Dwyer Arrest on Domestic Violence Allegations
 
Arizona Cardinals backup running back Jonathan Dwyer was arrested in connection with domestic abuse allegations, Phoenix police said, CNN reported Sept. 18. The Cardinals deactivated Dwyer after news of the arrest, according to a news release from the team. Police said he was booked on one count of aggravated assault causing a fracture, one count of aggravated assault involving a minor, two counts of criminal damage, one count of preventing the use of a phone in an emergency, and assault. The two victims were a 27-year-old woman and an 18-month-old child, police said.
 
In addition, a dozen other players with domestic violence arrests are still suiting up on Sundays.
Ray McDonald and Chris Cook of the San Francsico 49ers, Tony McDaniel and Kevin Williams of the Seattle Seahawks, Brandon Marshall and Santonio Holmes of the Chicago Bears, Greg Hardy of the Carolina Panthers, Dez Bryant of the Dallas Cowboys, Erik Walden of the Indianapolis Colts, Donte Whitner of the Cleveland Browns, Randy Starks of the Miami Dolphins and Frostee Rucker of the Arizona Cardinals have all been arrested for domestic violence or related charges since 2005, according to a USA Today database that tracks players' arrests since 2000.
 
Early this week, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell named NFL executive Anna Isaacson to take over the newly formed job of vice president of social responsibility. He also named three outside consultants to help shape league policies on domestic violence and sexual assault. All four are women, The Los Angeles Times reported Sept. 15.
 
 
Qatar Sends Record Women's Contingent to Asian Games
 
Qatar has included a record 55 women in its Asian Games team and they are not just there as window dressing, their delegation leader told AFP on Sept.17. The 55 are among a Qatari delegation of 260 athletes at the Incheon games which start on Friday. Middle East nations face growing attention on their sports equality following Saudi Arabia's decision not to send any women in their Asian Games team.
 
 
France Arrests Five Suspected of Recruiting Minors for Jihad in Syria
 
Five people have been arrested near Lyon, France, on suspicions of recruiting young women to join extremist groups fighting in Syria, France 24 reported Sept. 17. Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said the arrests were made on Tuesday and Wednesday.
 
 
 
Saudi Woman Fined for Driving to Hospital
 
A Saudi woman was reportedly fined by police after she drove herself to hospital, The Independent reported Sept. 16. Aliyah Al Farid, a businesswoman and member of the National Society for Human Rights, suffers from a chronic condition which means she is occasionally forced to visit hospital.
 
 
Drunk Women to Blame for Rape: Survey
 
One in five Australians believe a woman is "partly responsible" for being raped if she is intoxicated, a national survey found, ABC News reported Sept.17. The poll of 17,500 people also found one in six people support the notion that when women say no to sex, they mean yes.
 
 
New Study Shows More Women Play Games Than Men in UK
 
A new study into British gaming habits has confirmed what many industry watchers have been observing for years: more women play games than men, The Guardian reported Sept. 17.  Based on interviews with 4,000 UK residents, the research asserts that women now account for 52% of the gaming audience, up from 49% three years ago. The study, which was commissioned by the Internet Advertising Bureau, also revealed there are now more people over 44 years old playing games (27% of the audience) than children or teenagers (22%). 
 
 
U.S. Gender Gap Narrowed by Inch in 2013 to 78 Cents
 
U.S. Census Bureau data released Sept. 16 shows that the wage gap in 2013 shrank to 78 cents, but it does not represent a statistically significant change from 2012, says Fatima Goss Graves, vice president for education and employment at the National Women’s Law Center.  “There’s good news and bad news," Goss Graves said in an email press statement. "The good news:  the wage gap is shrinking.  The very bad news:  it’s by only a penny.  So this means that women on average still make only 78 cents for every dollar a man makes.  And that means that millions of women and their families continue to slide backwards year after year.  We can and must do better than this.  It’s time to close the wage gap now.”
 
 
Senate Republicans Block Paycheck Fairness
 
Senate Republicans did it again, MSNBC reported Sept. 15: They blocked a measure backed by President Barack Obama that would have strengthened equal pay protections for women. Counting procedural votes, it’s the fourth time Republicans have voted against the Paycheck Fairness Act since 2012, writes Irin Carmon. 
 
 
Russell Pearce Resigns After Suggesting to Sterilize Women on Medicaid 
 
Former Arizona state Senator Russell Pearce resigned as Arizona Republican Party's first vice chair late Sunday after receiving criticism over recent comments he made about women on Medicaid, The Huffington Post reported Sept. 15, citing the Pheonic New Times.  "You put me in charge of Medicaid, the first thing I'd do is get [female recipients] Norplant, birth-control implants, or tubal ligations," Pearce said. "Then, we'll test recipients for drugs and alcohol, and if you want to [reproduce] or use drugs or alcohol, then get a job."
 
 
80 Percent of Women Who Cross US-Mexico Border Are Raped
 
Eighty percent of Central American girls and women crossing Mexico en route to the United States are raped along the way,  according to directors of migrant shelters interviewed by Fusion. This new figure is up from the pervious reports that estimated the number at 60 percent.
 
 
Oscar Pistorius Guilty of Culpable Homicide in Killing of Girlfriend
 
Oscar Pistorius, the disabled track star who once commanded stellar heights of international competition at the Paralympic and Olympic Games, was found guilty on Sept. 12 of culpable homicide, equivalent to manslaughter, after being acquitted of murder charges for killing his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, The New York Times reported. Judge Thokozile Matilda Masipa agreed to extend Mr. Pistorius’s bail until his sentencing hearing begins, on Oct. 13. The verdicts represented a crushing blow for the lead prosecutor, who had demanded that Pistorius be convicted of premeditated murder, an offense that carries a mandatory minimum jail term of 25 years. Culpable homicide, which relates to negligence rather than intent, can draw a 15-year term, but the judge has wide discretion in determining the punishment.
 
 
 
 
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