About 10 women defied a strict ban from the all-male Mount Athos monastic sanctuary on the Athos peninsula of Greece. The women were only a few of the approximately 1,000 protestors at a rally on Tuesday in opposition to claims by five of the community's monasteries on some 20,000 acres of land on the nearby Halkidiki peninsula, according to Reuters.
"This is land that does not belong to them and we broke the no-women ban to highlight our cause to get the land back from the monasteries," Litsa Ammanatidou-Paschalidou, a member of Greek Parliament who took part in the protest told Reuters.
Monks at the 20 monasteries on the Athos peninsula have imposed this strict ban on women for nearly 1,000 years and it is upheld by the Greek constitution. Women who violate the ban can face up to a year in prison. No arrests have been made yet, but police in nearby Thessaloniki are looking into the incident, according to the Associated Press.
Media Resources: Associated Press 1/9/08; Reuters 1/9/08
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. . . .