Celebrity Gathering in NY Against Gender-Apartheid a Success
At a gala event sponsored by the Feminist Majority Foundation and Glamour Magazine, over 300 celebrities joined with human rights advocates Monday at the Forrest Ballroom of New York city's W Hotel to speak out against the terrible abuses women are suffering under Taliban military rule in Afghanistan.
Twenty-one year-old Maryam Shams, a refugee, recounted her own violent encounters with the Taliban militia as she and her friends tried to defy their edicts by maintaining an underground library of banned books, and gathering in public spaces. Hawa Ghaus, FMF's Afghanistan project associate, shared horrific stories from a recent survey expedition. Afghan refugees in Pakistan described to her massacres, executions, beatings, detentions, suicides, ethnic cleansing, religious and sectarian violence, rapes and gender abuse.
Joan Osborne, Melissa Etheridge and Jessica Tivens dedicated songs to Afghan women. Speakers Meryl Streep, Jane Meadows, Steve Allen, Marlo Thomas, Al Franken, Laura Dern, Glamour's Bonnie Fuller, and others voiced their support for the restoration of Afghan women's rights.
Media Resources: FMF, Azadi Afghan Radio - October 1999
10/30/2014 Medication Abortion Access Threatened by Oklahoma Court Ruling - An Oklahoma state district court judge has refused to block a state law restricting medication abortion, clearing the way for the law to go into affect on November 1.
The Oklahoma Coalition for Reproductive Justice, together with a local abortion clinic in Tulsa, challenged HB 2684 in September, arguing that the law was an unconstitutional restriction on non-surgical abortion in the earliest weeks of pregnancy. . . .
10/30/2014 UPS Switches Pregnant Worker Policy Ahead of Supreme Court Case - The United Parcel Service (UPS) is changing its policy on light duty assignments for pregnant workers, even though the company will stand by its refusal to extend accommodations to a former employee in an upcoming Supreme Court case.
UPS announced on Monday in a memo to employees, and in a brief filed with the US Supreme Court, that the company will begin offering temporary, light-duty positions to pregnant workers on January 1, 2015. . . .
10/30/2014 North Dakota Medical Students Speak Out Against Measure 1 - Medical students at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences are asking North Dakotans to vote no on Measure 1, a personhood measure on the state ballot this fall.
The students issued published a letter in the Grand Forks Herald stating that they opposed Measure 1 in part because they are against "the government's taking control of the personal health care decisions of its citizens." Nearly 60 UND School of Medicine students signed the letter, citing concerns over the "very broad and ambiguous language" used in the proposed amendment, which has no regard for serious and life-threatening medical situations such as ectopic pregnancies.
Measure 1 would change the North Dakota state constitution to create an "inalienable right to life" for humans "at any stage of development" - including the moment of fertilization and conception. . . .