Pakistani Girl's Parents Confess to 'Honor Killing'
A 15-year-old Pakistani girl named Anusha was the victim of an "honor killing" last week at the hands of her parents. The specifics of what happened are uncertain, however reports indicate that Anusha died after her parents poured acid on her for turning to look at a boy or boys. It was reported that she was beaten by her father and then both of her parents poured acid on their daughter, resulting in much of her body being covered with burns. Anusha's parents did not take her to the hospital until the morning after the incident.
Though "honor killings" are frequent occurrences in Pakistan, as well as in other parts of the world, police report that Anusha's murder was the first of its kind in Pakistani-administered Kashmir, where such an act is a criminal offense that can lead to life imprisonment. While some deaths are not reported, there were at least 943 honor killings in Pakistan last year, according to the Huffington Post. A report by the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan found that "throughout [last] year, women were callously killed in the name of honor when they went against family wishes in any way, or even on the basis of suspicion that they did so. Women were sometimes killed in the name of honor over property disputes and inheritance rights."
Anusha's parents have confessed to the honor killing and are being charged with murder. Human rights activists are working to end honor killing by attempting to control the sale of acid, creating a documentary on those who have survived acid attacks, and implementing educational programs.
Media Resources: Deutsche Welle 11/7/2012; BBC 11/5/12; Huffington Post 11/5/2012; Examiner.com 11/4/2012
8/31/2015 Chicago Activists Continue Hunger Strike to Save Predominately Black Public High School - Chicago residents have entered the second week of their hunger strike protesting the closure of Dyett High School, in the predominately African-American Bronzeville neighborhood located on the South Side of Chicago.
Parents and community members are calling on the Chicago Board of Education to keep Dyett - the only open-enrollment, neighborhood school in its area - open and accept a community plan to revitalize the school with a focus on science and green technology. . . .
8/28/2015 Alaska Court Protects Abortion Access for Low-Income Women - The Alaska Superior Court struck down a state law yesterday that would have severely limited abortion access for low-income women in Alaska.
The state's Superior Court also struck down a Department of Health and Social Services regulation that placed narrow specifications on Medicaid coverage for abortions, requiring that Medicaid-funded abortions be determined by a physician to be "medically necessary." Last year, the Center for Reproductive Rights, the American Civil Liberties Union, and Planned Parenthood sued on behalf of the Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest, claiming that the narrow definition of "medically necessary" arbitrarily established conditions designed to restrict the ability of low-income women to access abortion services.
The law was temporarily blocked last July by an Alaskan state court judge.
Superior Court Judge John Suddock ordered yesterday that the state be blocked from implementing this regulation, ruling that it placed an undue burden on low-income women seeking abortion services in Alaska.
"By providing health care to all poor Alaskans except women who need abortions, the challenged regulation violates the state constitutional guarantee of 'equal rights, opportunities, and protection under the law'," the ruling read.
"We applaud the superior court for striing down these cruel restrictions on women's health and rights that violate the Alaska Constitution," said Chris Charbonneau, CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest and the Hawaiian Islands. . . .