Girls still are stuck in home econmics classes while boys take 'shop' — that's the gist of a new report released by the National Women's Law Center (NWLC). The report, “Tools of the Trade,” finds that despite three decades of Title IX, girls represent the vast majority of students in “female fields” (such as cooking, sewing and cosmetology) and boys the majority in “male fields” (such as carpentry, automotive and welding).
When girls sign up for nontraditional trade classes, they often face harassment from peers and even from teachers. The lack of girls in traditional male trade education affects their earning power, too, as their male counterparts go into fields that are twice as lucrative.
“The hard truth is that most carpenters and electricians simply earn much more than health care workers and cosmetologists,” said Marcia D. Greenberger, co-president of NWLC. “Breaking down the barriers that prevent girls from enrolling in nontraditional courses is not just a fairness issue, it’s an issue of dollars and cents.”
The data was collected from schools in 12 states, and NWLC has provided on its website separate state “toolkits” to learn about and address this gender discrimination.
8/28/2015 Alaska Court Protects Abortion Access for Low-Income Women - The Alaska Superior Court struck down a state law yesterday that would have severely limited abortion access for low-income women in Alaska.
The state's Superior Court also struck down a Department of Health and Social Services regulation that placed narrow specifications on Medicaid coverage for abortions, requiring that Medicaid-funded abortions be determined by a physician to be "medically necessary." Last year, the Center for Reproductive Rights, the American Civil Liberties Union, and Planned Parenthood sued on behalf of the Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest, claiming that the narrow definition of "medically necessary" arbitrarily established conditions designed to restrict the ability of low-income women to access abortion services.
The law was temporarily blocked last July by an Alaskan state court judge.
Superior Court Judge John Suddock ordered yesterday that the state be blocked from implementing this regulation, ruling that it placed an undue burden on low-income women seeking abortion services in Alaska.
"By providing health care to all poor Alaskans except women who need abortions, the challenged regulation violates the state constitutional guarantee of 'equal rights, opportunities, and protection under the law'," the ruling read.
"We applaud the superior court for striing down these cruel restrictions on women's health and rights that violate the Alaska Constitution," said Chris Charbonneau, CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest and the Hawaiian Islands. . . .
8/26/2015 Saudi Women Prepare to Vote for the First Time - The fight for gender equality is making slow but notable progress in Saudi Arabia, where women will be allowed to vote for the first time in upcoming December elections.
This shift in Saudi law came in 2011, when a royal decree announced that women would be allowed to vote and run in local elections beginning in December of 2015. . . .