UN Study Declares Violence against Women a Widespread Problem in Afghanistan
A new report by the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) is shedding light on the extent of violence against women in Afghanistan. Uncounted and Discounted is based on over 1,300 incidences of violence against Afghan women between January 2003 and June 2005. Among the main conclusions of the report are that women are subjected to physical and psychological violence, often from an early age, and that neither employment, education levels, or marital status determines who will be victimized.
Intimate partners are often the abuser and often act “with impunity,” as there are few repercussions, either legally or within families. Furthermore, Afghan women who are suffering violence at the hands of family members often have nowhere to turn to for support. The report suggests that while further research is necessary to understand the full extent of violence against women, the state must step in immediately to provide support to those against whom acts of violence are committed.
Meanwhile, a resurgence of the Taliban in recent months has brought an increase in militia bombings, burnings of girls' schools, and the killing of teachers. Under the Taliban regime, education for Afghan women and girls was banned. Attacks on girls' schools began immediately following the reopening of the schools by the new Afghan government in 2002, but the current situation has reached crisis proportions, undermining the rights that Afghan women and girls were just beginning to enjoy.
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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. . . .