An Oscar statuette.
An Oscar statuette.

Credit: Davidlohr Bueso on Flickr, under Creative Commons (CC BY 2.0).



After nearly a year of partisan infighting on Capitol Hill, the House of Representatives and the Senate have agreed to send a reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act to President Barack Obama‘s desk, reported. On Feb. 28, by a vote of 286 to 138, the House passed the bipartisan Senate-approved version of the bill, one that includes added protections for LGBT, Native American and undocumented victims of domestic violence. All 138 votes against the bill were Republicans.

A watered down Republican version of the bill, which was offered as a substitute amendment, failed to garner enough votes to slow the process. It was struck down by a vote of 257 to 166. Sixty Republicans voted against their own party’s replacement measure.

On Feb. 27, a day before the vote, the Ms. Foundation for Women released a parody video exposing the ridiculousness of voting against VAWA, said in a statement.

Check out reporting from the last year.

More News to Cheer This Week:

At a time when India‘s commitment to women’s rights is under scrutiny, the government’s annual budget released Feb. 28. proposed a number of measures for women, including increased spending to improve their safety and a bank only for women, reported.

Reps. Chellie Pingree and Lois Frankel will lead a new group, “Women Lead,” to recruit and support female candidates for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee in an effort to bolster the party’s already-prodigious edge among women, reported .

” premiered Feb. 25 as a three-hour special on PBS. The documentary, narrated by Meryl Streep, tells the story of how women have shaped the United States over the last 50 years through political and personal empowerment. Women like Hillary Rodham Clinton, Ellen DeGeneres and Oprah Winfrey share their memories, as do countless women who challenged the status quo in industries from coal mining to medicine.

Aesha Bibi, whose mutilated face became a powerful image that shocked the world and put a face to the plight of Afghan women, finally revealed on camera her new face after reconstructive surgery and shared her story, reported .

South Korea swore in its first female president, Park Geun-hye, on Feb. 25, reported.

A Saudi newspaper says officials may consider dropping plans for a barrier separating men and the newly appointed women in the country’s top advisory body, reported .

Gucci is bankrolling a new global equality campaign for women, enlisting support from Facebook and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, at a time when women’s rights are in the spotlight following violent attacks in developing countries, reported .


The 2013 Oscars, held Feb. 24, made national headlines for host and “Family Guy” creator Seth MacFarlane‘s misogynistic, racist and anti-Semitic language. Two female California state lawmakers have condemned the Oscar host’s comments during the awards as degrading toward women and asked the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to use better judgment in the future, reported .

Julie Burton, president of the Women’s Media Center, an organization that released their annual report “” days before the Oscars, highlighting the shortage of female movie directors, said “The sexist tone throughout the show indicates a critical need for the Academy to expand its talent pool of female writers, producers and directors.”

Burton added that instead of celebrating film, “the whole world saw them honoring men and mocking women,” reported .

More News to Jeer This Week:

Angry crowds have gathered in the Indian capital, New Delhi, after reports that a 7-year-old girl was sexually assaulted at a school, the reported. Read Women’s eNews‘ related coverage .

The Arkansas Senate voted Feb. 28 to override a veto of a near-ban of abortions starting in the 20th week of pregnancy and backed a separate measure that would outlaw the procedures in most cases beginning in the 12th week, reported the .

Saudi security forces in the town of Buraida arrested a group of women protesting against the long-term detention of their male relatives, reported .

Libya’s Supreme Court has overturned a marriage law requiring a husband to secure the approval of his first wife before taking a second, reported .

A study documents a rise in the number of young women diagnosed with advanced, incurable breast cancer in the United States, reported .

Scotland Yard‘s specialist sex crime team put pressure on a woman to drop a rape claim against a man who later went on to murder his two children, reported .

More than 60 Republican lawmakers are requesting a Government Accountability Office study to examine how Planned Parenthood and other organizations that promote or provide abortion services are using federal funding, reported .

At least 13 women, including teenagers, have been subjected to prolonged rape by Burmese security forces in a remote village in the western state of Arakan, reported .

A new analysis of 56 mass shootings across America since 2009 finds women and family members are the most frequent victims, reported .

The U.K. Border Agency is endangering the health of some pregnant women seeking asylum and their babies by relocating them, a report found, reported .


State teen pregnancy rates indicate that New Mexico has the highest rates of teen pregnancies in the United States and that New Hampshire has the lowest rate in the country, reported .

The American Civil Liberties Union and the ACLU of Ohio filed a discrimination charge Feb. 26 with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission on behalf of Springfield, Ohio, resident Jennifer Maudlin against Inside Out, a religiously-based community organization. They allege that Inside Out fired Maudlin in September 2012 after she divulged that she was pregnant, according to a issued Feb. 26.

The Obama administration’s recent decision to lift the ban on women in combat has opened the door for a change in the law that currently compels only men between ages 18 and 25 to register for a military draft, according to legal experts and military historians, reported . Read Women’s eNews‘ related story,

Dozens of Lebanese women danced in front of the home of the country’s parliament speaker, Nabih Berri, to send a clear message of urgency to pass a law that looks to protect women from domestic violence, reported .

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