Struggle of Afghan Women Highlighted at UN International Women’s Day
The United Nations marked International Women’s Day last Friday by looking ahead at the future for women in Afghanistan. Afghan Minister for Women’s Affairs Dr. Sima Samar sent a statement to the gathering stating that “The long darkness for the women and girls of our country may finally be over.” Samar, however, also highlighted the important role that the international community must play in helping to ensure that Afghan women’s rights are fully restored. “We hope the international community will not forget Afghanistan again,” said Samar.
Sima Wali, a delegate to the United Nations talks on Afghanistan in Bonn in December 2001 and an organizer of the Afghan Women’s Summit, noted that Afghan women still face many obstacles in their struggle for full participation in Afghan society. According to Wali, 12 million Afghan women live in “abject poverty.” These women are in desperate need of aid, job training, healthcare, and educational services.
On International Women’s Day, the Feminist Majority, joined by other national women’s organizations, called upon the U.S. government to support the expansion of international peace troops throughout Afghanistan and to expedite funding for the Afghan interim government, especially the Ministry of Women’s Affairs
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. . . .