Mexico Compensates Rape Victim for Denying Her Right to an Abortion
Nearly seven years after Paulina Ramirez became pregnant from a rape attack in her home by a heroin addict, the Mexican government has agreed to pay her reparations for forcing her to carry the pregnancy to term. Marta Lamas, founder of the Reproductive Choice Information Group, declared to the Times, “This is a triumph for all women. After six years, the government has finally acknowledged that it denied this young woman her rights.”
Abortion is legal in Mexico in cases of rape or where the woman’s life is endangered. When Ramirez was raped at the age of 13, she and her mother decided to terminate the resulting pregnancy, but officials continually delayed the procedure, forcing her to carry the pregnancy to term. According to a new report from Human Rights Watch, rape victims in Mexico often face hostile officials who actively prevent women from accessing legal abortion services.
In what Luisa Cabal, director of the Center for Reproductive Rights’ International Legal Program, called “the most important legal victory for women in Mexico in a decade,” the state will reimburse roughly $40,000 in medical and legal fees, as well as provide free public education for Ramirez’s six-year-old son, according to the Times. According to the San Diego Union-Tribune, Silvia Resendiz, a member of the women’s rights group Alaide Foppa, which was involved with the case, stated that the government will “modify laws and regulations so that the Paulina case is not repeated.”
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. . . .