Female Lawmakers Numbers Rise; Violence Rates High

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A Scottish lobbying groups raises awareness of domestic abuse.

Credit: Andrea Pearson on Flickr, under Creative Commons

A Scottish lobbying groups raises awareness of domestic abuse.

(WOMENSENEWS)–

Cheers

The percentage of female lawmakers worldwide has nearly doubled over the past two decades, but the hefty impact of quotas that require a minimum amount of female members of Parliament may soon wear off, forcing new gender equality strategies to be introduced, according to the Inter-Parliamentary Union.

Rwanda was at the top of the most recent rankings with 63.8 percent female lawmakers, while 13 countries registered 40 percent or more women in the lower or single houses of parliament, the reported . Along with Rwanda, Andorra and Bolivia have made the most progress since 1995 in improving women’s political reputation.

More News to Cheer This Week:

Twitter updated its rules with new language that clearly prohibits users from posting explicit photos without the subject’s consent, reported . Users who wish to report tweets under the guidelines will need to verify their identity and that they are the subject of the photo or video, a Twitter spokesperson told Mashable. Twitter will then review the post to see if it violates their policy. If it does, the tweet will be hidden and the user who posted it will be locked out of their account until they delete it.

Local and international nongovernmental organizations called on Lebanon to allow the creation of a union for migrant domestic workers to help protect them from abuses, the reported . Rights groups have complained that employers often withhold pay, lock workers in their homes and confiscate their passports. The harsh living conditions have pushed some migrant workers to commit suicide. Others have died or been seriously injured while trying to escape their employers’ homes.

Dozens of Latinas from Texas’ Rio Grande Valley shared their stories about the growing reproductive health care crisis in Texas. The hearing was sponsored by the Center for Reproductive Rights, U.S. Human Rights Network and 10 Texas-based organizations.

Uber, the taxi service app, announced in a blog post on its website that it will create 1 million driver jobs for women by 2020, reported .

Created by SheKnows Media and BlogHer, a new video features women from this year’s BlogHer15 conference advisory board discussing the importance of women supporting one another to educate and empower female readers and content consumers, the reported . BlogHer15 is an annual conference created in partnership with BlogHer and SheKnows Media that celebrates female content creators.

The government of Ontario has released a new campaign video aimed at reducing sexual assault, along with the hashtag , reported . The theme of the video is to remind people they have the ability to speak up and help potential sexual assault victims.

Jeers

Violence against women around the world occurs "at alarmingly high levels," according to a report from the United Nations, reported . Findings in the report include a World Health Organization study that found 35 percent of women have experienced sexual or physical violence. In the European Union, a third of women reported the attack to the police. In addition, the report found that more than half of the women surveyed had experienced sexual harassment after the age of 15 at least once in their lifetime. The report finds "uneven progress" has been made in combatting the practice and gave suggestions on how to deal with it.

More News to Jeer This Week:

A 27-year-old Swedish man accused of raping a 13-year-old girl was acquitted because the girl’s body was "well-developed" for her age, reported . The article reports the girl did appeal against the ruling, but it was thrown out of court earlier this week after officials determined her body exempted him from blame, because he could not have known the girl’s age.

At least five Chinese feminist activists were detained in Beijing in the run-up to International Women’s Day and are still being held, reported . Chinese activist Feng Yuan told The Associated Press the women planned to observe International Women’s Day by putting up leaflets about sexual harassment.

Three teens from East London who are feared to have traveled to Syria to join Islamic State stole jewelry from one of their families to fund their journey, police have revealed, the reported . Shamima Begum, 15, Kadiza Sultana, 16, and Amira Abase, 15, paid more than £1,000 in cash (about $1,500) to a travel agent to buy three tickets to Turkey. It is feared that the trio continued on to Syria to become so-called "jihadi brides" with ISIS militants. A man has been arrested for allegedly helping three British teens cross into Syria, Turkey’s foreign minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said, the reported .

The U.S. Supreme Court has instructed a federal appeals court to revisit its rejection of the University of Notre Dame’s challenge to the Affordable Care Act’s birth control provision, according to a press release of the American Civil Liberties Union. The Affordable Care Act requires contraception to be included in all health plans, but it also grants an accommodation to nonprofit institutions with a religious objection. Notre Dame has objected to this requirement, arguing that simply filling out the form to notify its insurance company violates its religious beliefs.

GOP senators have added an anti-choice provision into a bipartisan bill aimed at helping human trafficking victims, reported . The bill includes language modeled after the Hyde Amendment, the law that bars Medicaid programs from using federal money to finance abortions.

A report has revealed that women’s careers stop progressing at 45, while men’s stagnate at 55, reported . Over a million aging workers are not fully employed. The report recommends flexible working hours, better training for managers and that CEOs pass an age and skills audit that would show bias in hiring and ageism.

Noted:

Hillary Clinton said she used the private email account out of convenience during a press conference at the United Nations, reported . "I thought it would be easier to carry just one device for my work and for my personal emails instead of two."

Naznin Akter, a 19-year-old Bangladeshi actress who filed a rape case against Rubel Hossain, a Bangladeshi cricketer, announced she was withdrawing the charges against the bowler, a day after his match-winning heroics at the World Cup, reported . Akter said she had decided to forgive her former boyfriend.

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