A second woman has decided to run for president of Yemen. On March 15, Rashida al-Qaili joined Sumaya Ali Raja, who had announced her candidacy in December, as the first two women candidates ever to seek the position. Rashida Al-Qaili, a satirical columnist, will run as an independent candidate. She said she would rely on her "community of intellectuals" to support her bid for office, rather than the more traditional family tribe or political party, reports IRIN.
Both women will face opposition from the country's conservative and Islamist movements, as "There are a lot of constraints facing women's political participation," political science professor Dr. Bilqis Abu-Osba'a told IRIN. "This includes… traditional tribal society, as well as a lack of earnest support from political parties, which don't push a good number of women into leading positions."
Currently there are only two women in the Yemeni cabinet and one woman in the 301-seat parliament. Women's organizations have urged the government to reserve 30 percent of the seats in the upcoming election for women. Elections will be held in September.
Media Resources: Feminist Daily News 1/6/06; IRIN (Integrated Regional Information Networks) 3/15/06, 3/8/06
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. . . .
10/30/2014 UPS Switches Pregnant Worker Policy Ahead of Supreme Court Case - The United Parcel Service (UPS) is changing its policy on light duty assignments for pregnant workers, even though the company will stand by its refusal to extend accommodations to a former employee in an upcoming Supreme Court case.
UPS announced on Monday in a memo to employees, and in a brief filed with the US Supreme Court, that the company will begin offering temporary, light-duty positions to pregnant workers on January 1, 2015. . . .
10/30/2014 North Dakota Medical Students Speak Out Against Measure 1 - Medical students at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences are asking North Dakotans to vote no on Measure 1, a personhood measure on the state ballot this fall.
The students issued published a letter in the Grand Forks Herald stating that they opposed Measure 1 in part because they are against "the government's taking control of the personal health care decisions of its citizens." Nearly 60 UND School of Medicine students signed the letter, citing concerns over the "very broad and ambiguous language" used in the proposed amendment, which has no regard for serious and life-threatening medical situations such as ectopic pregnancies.
Measure 1 would change the North Dakota state constitution to create an "inalienable right to life" for humans "at any stage of development" - including the moment of fertilization and conception. . . .