Today's Headline News

N.H. Prep School Grad Found Not Guilty of Felony Rape
Owen Labrie, a former student at an elite New Hampshire prep school, was acquitted Aug. 28 of felony sexual assault against a freshman, NBC News reported. Labrie, now 19, was convicted of misdemeanor sexual assault and a single felony count of using a computer to seduce a minor under age 16. He was accused of raping a freshman girl in May 2014 at their boarding academy, the prestigious St. Paul's School in Concord.

Planned Parenthood Raises Questions About Sting Videos
Planned Parenthood claimed Aug. 27 that undercover videos of its employees published by the Center for Medical Progress contained hidden edits that raise new questions the full context of recordings, Time reported. An analysis of the sting videos, undertaken by consulting firm Fusion GPS at Planned Parenthood’s direction, revealed at least 42 splices where video content had been edited out, but conversation appeared seamless.

Hillary Clinton Calls Out GOP Stance on Women's Health 
Hillary Clinton compared her Republican rivals’ views on women’s health issues to those of “terrorist groups” in a Cleveland speech on Aug. 27, ABC News reported. She specifically named Florida Sen. Marco Rubio’s position to make all abortions illegal even in case of rape and incest and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush's position—along with many of his GOP opponents—to defund Planned Parenthood. “Extreme views about women, we expect them from some of the terrorist groups, we expect that from people who don’t want to live in the modern world, but it’s a little hard to take coming from Republicans who want to be the president of the United States, yet they espouse out-of-date and out-of-touch policies,” Clinton said.

U.S. Job Shortage Seen Worse for Women: Ms Foundation Survey 
On Women’s Equality Day, the national holiday commemorating passage of the 19thAmendment to the U.S. Constitution, the Ms. Foundation for Women released a poll on the state of women’s equality, new findings on adopting the “feminist” label, and a fresh understanding of how the public feels about community problems and solutions. In a press statement, the foudnation says the survey is the first of its kind to examine whether the public believes specific issues have different impacts on women versus men. Economic hardships are found to be at the core of problems both women and men rank as the highest priorities in their communities; such as the high cost of health care, too many people struggling to make ends meet, and a shortage of good jobs. While most think economic issues affect men and women in equal proportions, about 26 percent see a shortage of good jobs disproportionately affecting women. Only 8 percent say a lack of good-paying jobs affects more men. “There’s an awareness that economic issues disproportionately affect women that I did not fully expect,” says Tresa Undem, who conducted the survey. “How the economy affects women specifically is not something we hear a lot about. But it is clearly something many people recognize firsthand.”

Hurricane Katrina Response Hurt Black Women in Housing Projects
In advance of the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina and the flooding of New Orleans, the Institute for Women’s Policy Research released a report Aug. 25 presenting a comprehensive analysis of the interview responses of 184 low-income black women who were living in “The Big Four”—four large housing projects within the city of New Orleans, known as “the Bricks”—and who were displaced by the twin disasters of the hurricane and the flooding. The report finds that disaster relief and housing policies put in place following Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath—in particular, the demolition of the Big Four public housing buildings—were implemented in a manner that took away opportunities, supports, and infrastructures from low-income women and their families most in need of a reliable safety net, especially as they sought to recover from a catastrophic set of disasters and endure the Great Recession.

Court OKs Wage Protections for Home Care Workers 
A federal appeals court has reinstated a rule change that is meant to provide home care workers minimum wage and overtime protections, Bryce Covert reports for Think Progress Aug. 21. The court in Washington ruled Friday that the Labor Department does have the authority to impose this requirement, which some homecare agency lobbyists were challenging. “The Department’s decision to extend the FLSA’s protections to those employees is grounded in a reasonable interpretation of the statute and is neither arbitrary nor capricious,” Judge Sri Srinivasan wrote on behalf of the court.

Early Stage Breast Cancer May Not Require Treatment
As many as 60,000 American women each year are told they have a very early stage of breast cancer — Stage 0, as it is commonly known — a possible precursor to what could be a deadly tumor. And almost every one of the women has either a lumpectomy or a mastectomy, and often a double mastectomy, removing a healthy breast as well, The New York Times reported. Yet it now appears that treatment may make no difference in their outcomes, researchers reported in JAMA Oncology.

Mormon Church Appoints First Trio of Women to High-Level Positions
The Mormon church announced that for the first time in its history the Utah-based faith has appointed a trio of women to high-level leadership councils that had been traditionally served only by men, Reuters reported. 

FDA Approves Addyi, First Prescription Drug to Boost Female Libido 
The Food and Drug Administration has approved the first prescription drug designed to boost sexual desire in women, a milestone long sought by a pharmaceutical industry eager to replicate the blockbuster success of impotence drugs for men, the Associated Press and several other news agencies are reporting. But stringent safety measures on the daily pill called Addyi mean it will probably never achieve the sales of Viagra, which has generated billions of dollars since the late 1990s.
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States Face Difficulty Cutting Planned Parnethood Funding Via Medicaid
The Obama administration this month warned two states that by ending Medicaid funding of Planned Parenthood, they may be out of compliance with federal law—step No. 1 in a process that could end in a complete termination of federal Medicaid funding for those states, the National Journal reported Aug. 17. (But there are other ways for states to cut funding for Planned Parenthood, as detailed lower in article.) States have made similar defunding attempts before, and when Planned Parenthood sued, they lost in court.

First Female Soldiers Set to Graduate from Army Ranger School 
Two female soldiers will make history when they become the first women to graduate from the Army Ranger School later this week, The Atlantic reported Aug 18. The pair will graduate with 94 men at Fort Benning, GA.  However, they will not be able to apply to join the 75th Ranger Regiment, the elite special-operations force, because the unit remains closed to women. The female soldiers were allowed into Ranger School as part of the Army’s ongoing assessment of how to better integrate women.

White House Hires Openly Transgender Staffer 
The White House has appointed its first openly transgender staff member, The Washington Post reported Aug 18. Raffi Freedman-Gurspan has been hired as an outreach and recruitment director for presidential personnel in the White House Office of Presidential Personnel. A handful of openly trans individuals have worked in the current administration, but not as a White House staff member.

Egypt's Campaign Reaches Out to 1000 Female Politicians
The Egyptian Center for Women’s Rights (ECWR) launched the “Women’s Voice” campaign to encourage women’s political participation, ahead of expected parliamentary and local municipality elections, the Daily News Egypt reported August 16. The programme, in partnership with UN Women, aims at raising awareness and encouraging women to participate in political life, whether by presenting themselves as candidates or by voting. The programme targets 1,000 potential female candidates and should divide them into small community circles, to be able to provide them with needed assistance.

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