Women’s Leaders Set Record Straight on Bush Commission’s Stealth Attack on Title IX
Women’s rights leaders today led a press conference to set the record straight about the serious threats to Title IX, the landmark 1972 law that mandates gender equity in federally funded education, including athletic programs in public high schools and colleges. The Commission for Educational Opportunities – appointed by President Bush to “review” Title IX – voted yesterday to allow interest surveys to be used as a tool in enforcing Title IX and to redefine proportionality to allow more discrimination. Both measures significantly weaken the enforcement of Title IX.
“The Bush administration is conducting a stealth attack on Title IX, and women and girls cannot and must not let them get away with it,” said Eleanor Smeal, Feminist Majority president. She was joined by Martha Burk, president of the National Council of Women’s Organizations; Jacqueline Woods, executive director of the American Association of University Women; Marcia Greenberger, president of the National Women’s Law Center; Terry O’Neill, vice-president of the National Organization for Women; and April Osajima, public policy director for Girls’ Inc.
“The purpose of this commission’s actions is to reduce girls’ opportunities – let there be no mistake about it,” Smeal said. “Today, it’s athletics; tomorrow, it’s the whole Title IX.” Smeal suggested that the Bush Commission’s attack on girls and women in sports may be the opening salvo in a broader attack on Title IX and the opening of opportunities for women in law, medicine, and other traditionally male-dominated professions.
The Commission for Educational Opportunities will present its final report on Title IX to Education Secretary Roderick Paige on February 28. With a commission largely made up of opponents to Title IX, the report is expected to recommend a weakening of the law.
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. . . .