Boxer Introduces Afghan Women Security and Freedom Act 2004
Before a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on Afghanistan's stabilization and reconstruction, Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) announced her introduction of the "Afghan Women Security and Freedom Act 2004." The act authorizes $300 million for each of the fiscal years 2005, 2006, and 2007, earmarking $20 million for the Afghan Ministry of Women's Affairs and $10 million for the Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission each year.
This act calls for direct funding for the Ministry of Women's Affairs, the Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission, and Afghan women's organizations. According to the act, "not less than 25 percent of such assistance" should be provided to women-led non-governmental organizations that are located in Afghanistan.
In addition, the act calls for expansion of international peacekeeping forces and the authorization of Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRTs) to intervene to stop human rights and women's rights violations, which the current mandate does not allow. The act also states that assistance should be used to implement programs to protect women and girls from sexual and physical abuse, trafficking, and sex discrimination in the delivery of humanitarian aid.
According to the act, not less than every six months the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the US State Department will be required to submit a report on the activities detailing the amount of assistance released to the Afghan Ministry of Women's Affairs, other ministries of the Afghan government, the Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission, Afghan non-profit organizations, international non-profit organizations, and United Nations agencies.
12/11/2013 Human Rights Day Celebrated Around The World - Yesterday marked International Human Rights Day, a day to celebrate human rights advances and to assess the challenges that lie ahead in protecting them.
"The fundamentals for protecting and promoting human rights are largely in place: these include a strong and growing body of international human rights law and standards, as well as institutions to interpret the laws, monitor compliance and apply them to new and emerging human rights issues," said United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay in a statement. . . .
12/11/2013 UConn Under Federal Investigation For Mishandling Sexual Assault Cases - The US Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights (OCR) informed the University of Connecticut on Monday that it will investigate the school for allegedly mishandling sexual assault cases and violating Title IX, the federal law that requires all recipients of federal financial assistance for education programs and activities to prohibit sex discrimination and sexual harassment [PDF].
The investigation was sparked after seven women filed a formal complaint in October alleging that UConn had failed to protect them from sexual assault and exposed them to a sexually hostile environment.One woman says her attacker was expelled from campus but later readmitted without her knowledge. . . .
12/11/2013 Massachusetts Democrat Katherine Clark Wins Congressional Seat - Democrat Katherine Clark will become the fifth woman to represent Massachusetts in the US House Tuesday, after easily defeating three opponents in a special election.
"Six years ago, there wasn't a single woman representing Massachusetts in Congress," said Niki Tsongas, the only other woman representing Massachusetts in the House. . . .