By Rachel Corbett
Saturday, August 13, 2005
Despite facing new demands in the wake of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, the United States military has continued to improve its child care system, according to a release issued Wednesday by the National Women's Law Center, an advocacy group in Washington, D.C.
The center, which has studied the topic since 2000, noted that the military has strengthened accreditation requirements, integrated programs for teenagers, lowered the cost child care for low-income families and increased the number of military child care spaces.
While the government has issued apologies and a private fund for the 70- and 80-year-old women, the efforts have been called insincere and government officials criticized for making demeaning remarks and for approving textbooks that omit "comfort women" from history, Reuters reported.
A group of Ugandan women move into the third week of their hunger strike in the Yarl's Wood Immigration Removal Centre, according to a Wednesday press release from London and San Francisco-based Legal Action for Women.
The women are protesting the refusal of their asylum, saying that they face potential rape and imprisonment by the Ugandan government or the insurgent Lords Resistance Army if they return to their homeland. A statement from the women says that the conflict between the government and the rebel group has raged for 18 years.
The women are also protesting the conditions of the detention center, in which they say they are underfed, sexually intimidated, medically neglected and subjected to racist abuse.
Conditions appear to be worsening. The Ugandan women are not allowed to send faxes to advocacy groups and do not have the money or access to lawyers in order to fight for their rights, according to Legal Action for Women. There have also been complaints of intensifying sexual intimidation and harassment, reportedly a factor in the recent attempted suicide of the spokesperson for the protesting group, Harriet Anyangokolo.
-- Allison Stevens contributed to this report.
Rachel Corbett is a Women's eNews intern and freelance writer based in New York City. Allison Stevens is Washington Bureau Chief for Women's eNews.
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