Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) successfully won passage of an amendment to the Foreign Operations Appropriations Bill calling for the inclusion of Afghan women in the reconstruction of Afghanistan, giving women a voice in the establishment of a new Afghan government. Under the Taliban, women have been subject to a horrific system of gender apartheid whereby they are prohibited from working, attending school, and leaving their homes without a male relative and without wearing the head-to-toe burqa shroud. Before the rise of the Taliban, women in Afghanistan enjoyed equal rights with men under the Afghan Constitution, adopted in 1964. Boxer called the U.S.-led war on terrorism, “an opportunity to return women to their rightful place in Afghan society.”
Boxer also joined on the Senate floor Senators Barbara Mikulski (D-MD) and Kay Bailey Hutchinson (R-TX), who have introduced new legislation aimed at helping to alleviate the healthcare and educational crisis facing Afghan women and girl refugees. Senator Hutchinson emphasized lack of educational opportunity and the substandard conditions faced by many Afghans, noting that forty-two percent of deaths were due to contaminated food and water and were easily preventable. Other women Senators also gave Mikulski and Hutchinson their support, including Susan Collins (R-ME) and Debbie Stabenow (D-MI). Senator Stabenow called the Taliban an “extremist, perverted group of people,” and went on to demand that women and children not be left out of a new government, as that would place Afghanistan once again “in jeopardy.”
Media Resources: Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Press Release, 10/24/01; Feminist Majority
7/27/2015 Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell Blocked Efforts to Defund Planned Parenthood - An attempt in the Senate to defundÂ Planned Parenthood by Mike Lee (R-UT) was blocked this weekend by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY).Â Lee tried to attach the elimination of federal funds for Planned Parenthood to a vote for highway legislation, a move which was rejected by McConnell asÂ out of order.
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7/24/2015 Katherine Spillar Urges Cleveland to Dramatically Increase Hiring of Women Police to Mitigate Police Violence - In a well-received speech at the City Club of Cleveland today, Katherine Spillar, Executive Director of the Feminist Majority Foundation urged Cleveland city officials to dramatically increase the hiring of women police officers as a way to decrease police brutality incidents.
Following a number of high profile police killings in Cleveland of African Americans, and an eight-month investigation by the US Attorney's office of the Northern District of Ohio, the City of Cleveland has now entered into a Consent Decree that requires numerous reforms in how the city oversees and investigates police operations, including training in use of force.
"Among the most important reforms mandated by the consent decree - and the most easily overlooked - are the changes the Cleveland Division of Police must make in its recruitment and hiring practices,
said Spillar. . . .