Violence Against Women 'Pandemic' in Mexico
Abductions, rapes and murders of women have all soared with more women being killed in Mexico than ever before, Reuters
reported March 7. Since former President Felipe Calderon launched a military offensive on the drug cartels at the end of 2006, over 85,000 people have been murdered. Most are young men but the number of women killed shot up 155 percent to 2,764 in 2012, official data shows.
Brussels Airlines to Use All-Female Crew for Women's Day
Brussels Airlines says it will use an all-female crew on its Brussels-to-New York flight on March 8, on the occasion of International Women's Day, USA TODAY
reported March 7.The flight – Brussels Airlines Flight 501 – is scheduled to depart Brussels at 10:30 a.m. and land at New York's JFK Airport at 1:05 p.m., all times local.
Fort Knox Appoints First Female Commander
Brig. Gen. Peggy C. Combs has become the first woman to take command over Fort Knox and U.S. Army Cadet Command, the Associated Press
reported. Combs, who's served in the Army for 28 years, succeeds Maj. Gen. Jeff Smith in the role.
Senate Rejects Bill Blocking Military Commanders From Sex Assault Cases
The Senate rejected March 6 a controversial bipartisan bill to remove military commanders from decisions over the prosecution of sexual assault cases in the armed forces, the New York Times
reported. Advocacy groups argued that wholesale changes are necessary to combat an epidemic of rapes and sexual assaults in the military. The measure, pushed by Senator Kirsten E. Gillibrand, Democrat of New York, received 55 votes — five short of the 60 votes needed for advancement to a floor vote.
The same day, the New York Times
reported that a sergeant responsible for advising students at the United States Military Academy in West Point, N.Y., has pleaded guilty in a case that included accusations that he secretly videotaped female cadets in the locker room. Sgt. First Class Michael McClendonwill serve a 33-month sentence before being thrown out of the Army with a bad-conduct discharge
Three Abortion Clinics in Texas Forced to Shut Down
Three reproductive health care facilities have been shut down in Texas after new restrictions on abortion providers went into effect last November, Think Progress
reported March 6. Two of the clinics were run by Whole Woman's Health, the largest independent abortion provider in the state. After this announcement, Rio Grande Valley no longer has a single clinic left.
Palestinian Women Protest U.N.’s Reduced Food Aid
Women in the group Palestinians Against Blockade Committee led a protest outside the United Nations Relief and Works Agency in the Gaza Strip to protest the aid group’s decision to reduce food aid, the Arabic-language local daily Felesteen Online
reported March 5. The protesters said the decline in food aid over the years causes their families to suffer while their economy is being choked off by the Israeli blockade.
Third of Women in the E.U. Suffered Violence
About a third of all women in the EU have suffered either physical or sexual violence since the age of 15, according to a survey
by the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights, BBC reported
March 5. The survey is said to be the biggest survey conducted on the subject, and is based on interviews with 42,000 women.
Vatican Considers Greater Role of Women in Church
The Vatican could soon make significant changes to the role of women in the Catholic Church and to its approach to divorcées, Pope Francis
said, The Wall Street Journal
reported March 5. In an extensive interview granted to two newspapers, Corriere della Sera in Italy and La Nacion in Argentina, the pope said that women could have greater decision-making power in the church's hierarchy. Some Vatican experts have raised the possibility of the pope appointing women to senior positions in the Vatican bureaucracy, perhaps as the head of one of its powerful departments.
Study: Girls Who Play with Barbie Could Choose Less Ambitious Careers
Girls who play with Barbie dolls see fewer career options for themselves than for boys, according to a study
conducted by an Oregon State University researcher. “Playing with Barbie has an effect on girls’ ideas about their place in the world,” said Aurora M. Sherman, an associate professor in the School of Psychological Science at OSU. “It creates a limit on the sense of what’s possible for their future. While it’s not a massive effect, it is a measurable and statistically significant effect.”
Online Campaign Urges U.N. to Stop Violence Against Egyptian Women
On the occasion of the International Women's Day (March 8), the International Coalition for Egyptians Abroad has launched an online campaign - Stand for Egyptian Women
- to document and raise awareness about the sexual abuses and torture endured by Egyptian women in detention. The campaign also includes a petition
urging the U.N. to condemn and "to take adequate procedures" to stop the violence.
Militant Islamist Group Impose Dress Code on Women
All women in Syria’s northern city of Raqqah are now obliged to wear head-to-toe coverings, Alarabiya reported
March 4. The imposition comes from the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), a Syria-based Islamist militant group that gained complete control of the city in the beginning of this year. The group also has banned music, singing and smoking.
Tunisian Religious Leaders Reconsider Polygamy
The 60 percent rate of unmarried women in Tunisia has religious leaders calling to restore the legality of polygamy, the Arabic- language Palestinian News portal Donia Alwatan
reported March 4.
Study Finds Racial Gap for Breast Cancer
Research finds black women with breast cancer are on average about 40 percent more likely to die of the disease than white women with breast cancer, the New York Times
reported March 4. The analysis shows that the mortality rates for white women with breast cancer have dropped much more rapidly over the past 20 years than for black women.
Hillary Clinton Liked, Viewed Favorably for 2016
Hillary Rodham Clinton would enter the 2016 presidential race better liked and more respected than she was when she ran for the Democratic nomination in 2008, according to a USA TODAY/Pew Research Center Poll
released March 4. The survey shows that 51 percent say they'd like her to run for president in 2016 (including three of four Democrats), 43 percent say they hope she doesn't.
shows that a majority of people in New Jersey, New York and Virginia view the former secretary of state favorably. A majority of voters in New York state, 64 percent; New Jersey, 59 percent; and Virginia, 56 percent, name Clinton most often as the one eligible person they would most like to see as the next president.
2015 Budget Supports Paid Leave for Family, Medical Reasons
The new budget proposal for Fiscal Year 2015, released
March 4, supports a five million dollar State Paid Leave Fund and an additional initiative to support state paid leave programs. Ellen Bravo, executive director of Family Values @ Work, stated that the additional funding to strengthen wage and hour enforcement will help ensure that workers receive fair wages and overtime pay and can access job-protected leave for family and medical purposes.
Ex-Prosecutor in General's Sex Case Thought Victim Was Lying
The former lead prosecutor in a sexual assault case against a U.S. Army general wanted most of the charges dropped after he became convinced the accuser had lied, USA TODAY
reported March 4. That testimony came Tuesday at a hearing for Brig. Gen. Jeffrey A. Sinclair, who faces a court-martial on charges that include physically forcing a female captain under his command to perform oral sex. If convicted, Sinclair could get life sentence in a military prison.
Low-Income Workers Have Less Access to Sick Leave
More than 41 million people can't take a paid day off when they or their families fall ill, according to a report by the Institute for Women's Policy Research, Think Progress
reported March 4. Low-income workers are more affected than the well off. The report finds that occupations that have the least access to sick days - for example food preparation and personal care - are dominated by women.
Women Main Recipients of Government Aid In Jordan
Seventy nine percent of the beneficiaries of Jordan’s protection services for domestic violence are women over 18 years old, according to the Ministry of Social Development, the Arabic- language local daily Addustour
reported March 3. The ministry also reported that women received 55 percent of the country’s low-income financial assistance from the National Aid Fund.
Florida Woman Could Get 60 Years for Firing ‘Warning Shot’
Marissa Alexander could get up to 60 years in prison after being convicted of three accounts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and sentenced to 20 years, CBS News
reported March 3. Since the 2012 incident, Florida's law has changed so that sentences for the same crime must be served consecutively, not concurrently. Amid criticism from her supporters, the judge has ruled that Alexander needs to prove beyond a doubt that her husband was abusive toward her.
Iraqi Female Journalists Report Sexual Harassment
Sixty eight percent of Iraqi female journalists complained that they had suffered from sexual harassment or gender discrimination at work, the Arabic newspaper, Al- Mada,
reported March 3. They voiced this criticism at a forum for Iraqi female journalists that noted that 28 of their colleagues had died while asking for promotions in their organizations.
Al Qassimi Named Arab's Most Powerful Woman
For the fourth year in a row, Lubna Al Qassimi, minister of international development for the United Arab Emirates, tops Arabian Business' list
of the Arab world’s most powerful women, the Emirati magazine
reported March 3.
Record Number of Women on Billionaires List
Forbes' annual billionaires list includes a record number of women this year, Forbes
reported March 3. The number of women on the list increased by 25 percent since last year, with 172 versus the 138 of 2013, marking a new record. The United States has the most female billionaires on the list, with 58, followed by Germany with 16, and Brazil with 14.
Focus On Male Studies Harmful to Women's Health
The lack of attention to gender differences during scientific studies can be harmful to women's health, the Chicago Tribune
reported March 3. A study by the Connors Center for Women's Health found that Animal and human studies typically use male subjects, and even when females are included, researchers fail to analyze and report results by sex.
Women With Transplanted Wombs Attempt to Get Pregnant
Nine women received wombs donated by their mothers or other close relatives since 2012 and doctors have begun transferring embryos into four of them, ABC News
reported March 3. There are still many questions surrounding the procedure, but doctors say it is meant for those who have lost a uterus to cancer or were born without one the chance to give birth to their own biological child.
United Arab Emirates Approves 5 Abortions
The United Arab Emirates recently approved five abortions, the Arabic-language local daily Emarat Alyoum
reported March 2. The country’s Shariah Committee for Issuing Fatwas approved the five procedures after reviewing 11 applications in cases where all the fetuses suffered retardation.
Iraqi Women for Running Parliament Elections
About 3,000 Iraqi female candidates are preparing to start campaigning for parliament elections, the Arabic- language Daily Asharq Al-Awsat
newspaper reported March 2. Most are running for the first time.
Saudi Female Activists Demand End of Absolute Authority
Female Saudi activists demand "measures to protect women's rights" in a petition to the country's consultative council, Aljazeera
reported March 2. Women in the kingdom are banned from driving and must have permission from a male guardian for work or travel. Ten female activists have signed the petition, saying that the laws enforced on women within the kingdom are "not based on religous" teachings.
French Authorities Stop Girl from Leaving to Syrian War
French authorities arrested a 14-year-old who was about to travel to Turkey to join the foreign-backed armed insurgency against the Syrian government, the Arabic language Fars News
(Iranian News Agency) reported March 1. Her parents informed the officials about her travel plans after she sent them a text message saying she intended to leave France to join foreign-backed militants in Syria.
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