In Colorado Springs yesterday, the Bush administration’s Commission on Opportunity in Athletics held its third of four nationwide public hearings on Title IX, the 1972 law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in education. The hearings opened with three panels of appointed speakers including George Shur, general counsel for Northern Illinois University. Refuting testimony by US Olympic Committee president Marty Mankamyer and other representatives from US Olympic teams, Shur argued, “A college cannot be all things to all people. A university’s mission does not include furnishing athletes to Olympic teams,” according to Rocky Mountain News. He continued, “[Title IX] has made a difference not just in women’s athletic programs or for women athletes, but in how women are viewed and treated in general in our society,” reported the Baltimore Sun.
In the last 30 years since the passage of Title IX, women’s participation in sports has increased by more than 800 percent at the high school level and approximately 400 percent at the collegiate level. Title IX has also made possible the integration of medical schools and law schools. Despite the law’s enormous gains for women and girls, opponents attacked Title IX during yesterday’s panel discussion, erroneously alleging that it diminishes athletic opportunities for men and boys. Peggy Bradley-Doppes, athletic director at University of North Carolina at Wilmington and president of the National Association of Collegiate Women Athletic Administrators said, “Schools that cut men’s programs blame Title IX, but “Title IX is not the reason. A lack of leadership is,” reported the Rocky Mountain News. Bradley-Doppes insists that scrutinizing athletic budgets allows for the creation of opportunities without eliminating male programs.
The commission scheduled five hearings around the country on Title IX—four of which are open to the public. The final town meeting will be held in San Diego on November 20-21.
10/31/2014 Federal Judge Exempts Another Catholic University from Birth Control Coverage - A federal judge ruled Tuesday that Ave Maria University, a Catholic university in Florida, does not have to comply with federal rules meant to ensure that covered employees can exercise their right to obtain birth control at no cost.
The Affordable Care Act requires all new health insurance plans to cover all FDA-approved contraceptives - such as the pill, emergency contraceptives, and IUDs - without charging co-pays, deductibles or co-insurance. . . .
10/31/2014 Women of Color in Tennessee Are United in Opposition to Amendment 1 - Just days before the general election in Tennessee, a coalition of community leaders, clergy, and advocates led a press conference encouraging women of color to vote no on Amendment 1, a dangerous and far-reaching measure on the state's ballot.
SisterReach, a grassroots organization focused on "empowering, organizing, and mobilizing women and girls in the community around their reproductive and sexual health to make informed decisions about themselves," organized the press conference "to call attention to the unique concerns Black and poor communities throughout Shelby County and across the state of Tennessee face on a daily basis" and to emphasize how the upcoming election "could further limit [black women's] reproductive, economic, political, and social autonomy."
"We assemble today to impress upon black women and women of color, many of whom are heads of households, to get out and vote," said SisterReacher Founder and CEO Cherisse Scott at the event.
SisterReach has been educating voters about the particularly dangerous impact of Amendment 1 on women of color. . . .
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. . . .