Deception in Athletic Programs' Gender Equity, NY Times Reports
A New York Times report released earlier this week uncovered the deception of many athletic programs in schools regarding gender equity in sports, distorting the numbers in order to comply with the requirements of Title IX.
Title IX, which bans sex discrimination in any federally financed education program, has largely drawn attention to and been labeled as solution for the unequal treatment of male and female athletes. In 1972, when Title IX was passed, there were fewer than 30,000 women participating in college sports, and today there are over 186,000 women a year - an increase in over 500%.
The report found that some athletic programs are filling their numbers by counting athletes who no longer play on the team, enlisting women as team members who do not participate in the games, or by counting their male players as women.
Other programs are manipulating their numbers by trimming the rosters of mens teams, eliminating mens sports rather than increasing womens in order to reach the standards of gender parity.
An example of roster manipulation comes from the University of South Florida, where in the last academic year, 71 women were reported as members of the school's cross-country team, yet only 43 students ever ran in a competition. According to the report, double- and triple-counting women has allowed nearly 50 Division I universities to hide the fact that they have fewer female athletes.
Quinnipiac University was sued in a class action lawsuit last August for failing to adhere to Title IX regulations, manipulating numbers in the list of male athletes and replacing the women's volleyball team with competitive cheerleading in order to build the roster of female athletes.
Nancy Hogshead-Makar, an Olympic swimmer and the senior director of advocacy at the Women's Sports Foundation, told The New York Times "The fraud is disheartening. Intercollegiate athletics are rare educational opportunities, subsidized with our tax dollars, which deliver superior lifelong returns on investment. When an athletic department engineers itself to produce only the appearance of fairness, they flout the law and cheat women."
Media Resources: Athletic Business Newswire 4/26/11; NY Times 4/25/11; Feminist Newswire 5/26/2010
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. . . .
8/26/2015 Saudi Women Prepare to Vote for the First Time - The fight for gender equality is making slow but notable progress in Saudi Arabia, where women will be allowed to vote for the first time in upcoming December elections.
This shift in Saudi law came in 2011, when a royal decree announced that women would be allowed to vote and run in local elections beginning in December of 2015. . . .