SIGN UP FOR JOBS NEWS & ALERTS:
print Print    Share Share  
Weekly Email Weekly News Email RSS Feed News RSS

Feminist News

Search Feminist News by keyword

Search News and/or 

first record   previous record  News Stories 12776 to 12800 of 13967  next record   last record


9/4/1997 - Senate Moves to Eliminate Medicaid Abortions

The Senate voted Wednesday to eliminate Medicaid funding for abortions performed by managed care organizations. Exceptions would be granted in instances where the unwanted pregnancy was caused by rape or incest or endangers the mother's life. The House will consider this provision, sponsored by Sen. John Ashcroft, R-Missouri, later this week.

According to Kate Michelman, president of the National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League, abortion services are currently covered by two thirds of managed-care plans. The Senate's move will have a particularly devastating affect on poor women, who depend on Medicaid-funded managed care for their basic healthcare. Parenthood Federation of America president Gloria Feldt remarked, "This action stands in stark contrast to the original intent of the federal Medicaid program by further marginalizing poor women and erecting barriers to equal health care for all."


9/4/1997 - Nutri/System Replaces Fen-Phen With Phen-Pro

Nutri/System Weight Loss Centers has discontinued the use of fen-phen in response to reports that the drug causes damage to heart valves and increases blood pressure. Nutri/System has replaced fen-phen with an alternative drug combination called phen-pro, a mixture of phentermine and Prozac, an anti-depressant.

Nutri/System claims that the new drug is effective and safer than fen-phen. Others, like Dr. Lewis J. Rubin, head of pulmonary medicine at the University of Maryland Medical School, claim that phen-pro has not yet been proven safe. "Let's not embrace the next [drug] that comes down the pike until it's proven safe and effective."


9/4/1997 - Calcium, Vitamin D Prevent Bone Fractures, Study Reports

A new study found that calcium and vitamin D supplements reduce the risk of broken bones in elderly persons. Previous studies have established that calcium supplements can slow bone loss and increase bone density, and that vitamin D encourages the body's absorption of calcium. The new study by Dr. Beth Dawson-Hughes et al and published in last Thursday's New England Journal of Medicine, is unique in that it shows that calcium can actually prevent fractures from occurring.

In the study, subjects that took calcium supplements were more than 50% less likely to suffer a broken bone after a fall than were subject that did not take calcium supplements. The annual cost of osteoporosis (gradual thinning and weakening of bone tissue) and fractures that are caused by osteoporosis is an estimated $10 billion.


9/3/1997 - Abortion Dispute May Obstruct Administration's Plan

An anticipated abortion dispute in Congress, led by Republican Rep. Chris Smith of N.J., may jeopardize the Clinton administration's plan to repay United Nations debt and restructure U.S. foreign policy organization through the State Department authorization bill. The authorization bill, which was discussed and partially agreed-upon in a House-Senate conference last month and may come up in the House again this week, would bring the U.S. Information Agency and the Arms Control Agency under the State Department and allocate $819 million for repayment of U.S. debt to the United Nations.

The portion of the bill that is in contention is a measure that concerns funding for family planning organizations that practice or advocate abortion. Smith would like to reinstate the former "Mexico City" provision by amending the State Department authorization bill. The Mexico City provision, strictly enforced by the Bush and Reagan administrations and then abolished by Clinton in 1993, bars the use of U.S. funds for international family planning organizations that perform or advocate abortions. If the House-Senate approves the "Mexico City" language suggested by Smith, Clinton will likely veto the bill.


9/3/1997 - Corporations Cater to Women Entrepreneurs

The U.S. Department of Labor has projected that women will own approximately one-half of U.S. businesses by the year 2000. There are approximately eight million women business owners today, and these businesses generate $2.3 trillion in sales. Lucile Reid, who directs a $10 billion loan program for women business owners for Wells Fargo Bank, says of women-owned businesses, "They've grown from being tiny businesses to strong, small businesses with great growth prospects, so you [corporations] better pay attention."

Several major U.S. corporations have responded to women's growing economic power by altering their sales strategies and marketing specifically to women. IBM now has women-led divisions that target women business owners. AT&T has launched commercials which feature women business owners and has trained its sales force to use communication skills and tactics that women are said to prefer. For example, women, more so than men, desire partnerships with their vendors. They seek to establish long-term relationships, demand frequent personal attention, and are often more loyal to their vendors than are men. Some women business owners dispute these generalizations and fear that essentialist stereotypes will impede them in their struggles for equality with men.


9/3/1997 - Chicago Sponsors Gay-Pride Themed Renovations

Chicago's North Halsted Street, home to one of the city's most visible and prosperous gay communities, will receive city funds for renovations and improvements that have a gay-pride theme. Mark Johnson, spokesperson for the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, said, "Such a institutional recognition of a largely homosexual community is a national first." The renovations, scheduled to begin in March of 1998, will include rainbow-colored lights, hung in arches on a half-mile stretch of Halsted Street. In addition to the new lighting, sidewalks will be repaired and widened, and trees will be planted. "This particular strip has contributed million of dollars to the economic base of the city, so the city is reinvesting in the community," said Mary Morten, liaison to the gay and lesbian community for Mayor Richard Daley.


9/3/1997 - WOC Honors Diana With Land Mines Campaign

Women Organizing for Change (WOC) is honoring Diana, the Princess of Wales, by lending its efforts to one of her many worthy causes. "There will be many memorials to the Princess of Wales. But perhaps the best tribute to her life would be to make her fight against land mines a success." According to the WOC, the U.S. government has done little to eliminate the use of these destructive devices, which claim many innocent lives each year. If you would like to contribute to WOC's efforts, please contact President Clinton and urge him to join in the fight to eliminate land mines. He can be reached via e-mail (president@whitehouse.gov), phone (202/456-1414), fax (202/456-2883), or mail (1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington, DC 20500).


9/3/1997 - Dallas Diocese Asks Vatican to Nullify Priest's Ordination

Roman Catholic officials in Dallas asked the Vatican to nullify the ordination of Father Rudolph Kos on grounds that Kos lied to them about his background and sexual orientation. Kos, who is an accused pedophile, cost the church $119.6 million in a July 24th civil lawsuit award to 11 plaintiffs. The jury found that the diocese was "grossly negligent" in dealing with the alleged abuse and concealed information about Kos. Former Vatican Embassy lawyer speculates that Vatican will likely reject the request for nullification. "They ignoring warnings for years and didn't do anything. You can't undo that."


9/3/1997 - Dallas Diocese Asks Vatican to Nullify Priest's Ordination

Roman Catholic officials in Dallas asked the Vatican to nullify the ordination of Father Rudolph Kos on grounds that Kos lied to them about his background and sexual orientation. Kos, who is an accused pedophile, cost the church $119.6 million in a July 24th civil lawsuit award to 11 plaintiffs. The jury found that the diocese was "grossly negligent" in dealing with the alleged abuse and concealed information about Kos. Former Vatican Embassy lawyer speculates that Vatican will likely reject the request for nullification. "They ignoring warnings for years and didn't do anything. You can't undo that."


9/3/1997 - Fort Bragg Soldiers Disciplined for Sexual Harassment

Army officials at Fort Bragg, N.C., have disciplined seven of thirteen soldiers accused of sexual misconduct and may punish an eighth. Army investigators determined that the remaining five soldiers will not be punished. The accused harassers worked in the 1st Corps Support Command Consolidated Dining Facility and were charged with making inappropriate sexual comments and fraternization.

Of the seven soldiers disciplined, two were charged under Article 15 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice, which allows for demotions, reductions in pay, the assignment of extra duty, or the imposition of mild restrictions. The remaining five soldiers received written reprimands. A new manager has been appointed at the dining facility.


9/2/1997 - Oregon Prisoner Denied an Abortion

The Yamhill County, Oregon board of commissioners passed a new anti-abortion law last Thursday. Under this law, Joni Ledbetter, a prisoner jailed on robbery charges, will be denied an abortion and forced to carry her unwanted pregnancy to term because Yamhill county agents will not release her for the procedure. The law prohibits county agents from facilitating abortions in any way.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Oregon plans to challenge the Yamhill County law in court. Executive Director David Fidanque defended women's constitutional right to an abortion, stating, "No government agency can force a woman to continue a pregnancy she doesn't want to continue."

[Source: Reuters - August 29, 1997


9/2/1997 - Israelis Accused of Prostituting South African Women

Ten South African women, lured to Tel Aviv with the promise of legitimate jobs, allege that they were forced into prostitution. One of the accusers claimed that she was threatened with death. The South African women have since been sent home and an investigation is underway.


9/2/1997 - Hong Kong Sex Discrimination Laws Challenge Popular Newspaper

Hong Kong's Apple Daily printed an advertisement for "several pretty female reporters," in an apparent violation of the country's new anti-discrimination employment laws. The new anti-discrimination laws prohibit employers from citing sex, marital status, or lack of disability as a condition of employment, but allow employers to request workers of a specific age or race. The publisher of the popular Apple Daily newspaper will be the first organization tried under the new discrimination laws.


9/2/1997 - WOC Honors Diana With Land Mines Campaign

Women Organizing for Change (WOC) is honoring Diana, the Princess of Wales, by lending its efforts to one of her many worthy causes. "There will be many memorials to the Princess of Wales. But perhaps the best tribute to her life would be to make her fight against land mines a success." According to the WOC, the U.S. government has done little to eliminate the use of these destructive devices, which claim many innocent lives each year. If you would like to contribute to WOC's efforts, please contact President Clinton and urge him to join in the fight to eliminate land mines. He can be reached via e-mail (president@whitehouse.gov), phone (202/456-1414), fax (202/456-2883), or mail (1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington, DC 20500).


9/2/1997 - Janet Jagan May Become Guyana's First Female Head of State

Janet Jagan, widow of Guyanese President Cheddi Jagan, accepted the People's Progressive Party's presidential nomination on Sunday, August 31st. If elected, Jagan will be the first female head of state in Guyana. A Chicagoan and Jewish-American nurse, Jagan would also be Guyana's first foreign-born elected leader.

Jagan has served in Guyana's highest post of prime minister since her husband's death in March of 1996 and has also served as health minister. Her husband's deputy, Sam Hinds has been president since Cheddi Jagan's passing and will be Janet Jagan's running mate in the coming election.


9/2/1997 - WBNA Attendance Rivals Men's Sports

The Women's National Basketball Association wrapped up a wildly successful inaugural season with a championship game this Saturday. The WNBA drew more spectators than Major League Soccer in August and matched the television audience of men's professional golf. New York's Liberty team drew more fans to Madison Square Gardens than the New York Knicks have since 1987, and both the Phoenix and New York teams averaged more than 13,000 spectators per game. Even the Utah team, which had the lowest average attendance at 7,611, drew nearly twice as many fans as was originally anticipated. The WBNA looks forward to an even more successful season next year.


9/1/1997 - Army Excuses Aberdeen Commander

On July 31, Army officials said the two-star general in charge of Aberdeen should not be held responsible for the widespread sexual scandal that occurred on the base. Four mid-level officers at the Aberdeen Ordnance Center should, however, receive administrative punishment for the sex scandals in their battalions, according to the Army leadership.

Gen. William Hartzog, who heads the Army’s Training and Doctrine Command and who determined the disciplinary measures after a seven-month review, excused Maj. Gen. Robert D. Shadley, the Aberdeen commander, because he claims Shadley had no idea of sexual misconduct on the base. Although the Army decided the four officers who were directly responsible for the battalions should receive punishment, an official described the disciplinary action as “nothing earth-shattering” and may not affect the future careers of the men. The Army’s decision prompted Rep. Jane Harman (D- Calif.), a member of a House panel studying gender issues in the military, to comment, “There was clearly a lax environment at Aberdeen and my view is that there is responsibility at the top and through the chain of command. I’ll be watching to see what the Army’s total solution is. It must include some action against senior levels who were asleep at the switch. Wrongdoing must be punished and wrongdoing includes failure to supervise.”


9/1/1997 - U.N. Continues to Deny Taliban Afghan Seat

The international community continues to resist the Taliban's efforts to gain recognition as the official government of Afghanistan. The chairman of the United Nations credentials committee has so far refused to meet with Abdul Hakeem Mujahid, the Taliban's designated ambassador to the U.N. Without the chairman's recommendation, it is virtually impossible that the Taliban will be granted a U.N. seat.

The Taliban is a fundamentalist Islamic group which overthrew Afghanistan's Rabbani government on September 27, 1996, and imposed an end to women's human rights there. For this reason, the Netherlands and other European countries have been reluctant to endorse the Taliban's U.N. membership. Although the U.S. has taken no official position on the matter, women's and human rights groups have pressured government officials not to recognize the Taliban.

"The American government and the United Nations must refuse to recognize the Taliban as a legitimate government in Afghanistan. How can women be safe anywhere if some governments can carry out gender apartheid with impunity? Do not think such fundamentalist terror can only happen in a far off country!" said Feminist Majority President Eleanor Smeal at a July 30 noontime picket.


9/1/1997 - Tax Cut Benefits Single Mothers

President Clinton and Congress have agreed to a tax cut that will add a $500 dollar tax credit per child. This credit, according to tax analysts at Deloitte and Touche, will benefit working single mothers. Under the current system, a working mother with two children and an income of $20,000 per year would receive a $771 tax refund . This refund comes from the Earned Income Tax Credit, a credit designed to create incentive to work in low-wage jobs. Under the new agreement, the same working mother will receive an additional $500 per child, for a total of $1,771. The tax cut will also benefit middle-income households with children under 17 or in college, and families with substantial capital gains investments.


9/1/1997 - Study Examines Gender Differences in Math Skills

A study published in Developmental Psychology found that boys’ higher math scores result more from better spatial skills than girls’ low self-confidence. Researchers tested 94 high school students on their math self-confidence and their spatial skills, the ability to mentally visualize and rotate 3-dimensional objects. They discovered that 64% of the difference in math scores stems from boys’ better spatial ability, while 36% results from girls’ lower self confidence. M. Beth Casey, a developmental psychology professor at Boston College and the report’s leading author, believes boys obtain better spatial skills because their elders encourage them to play with blocks and toys such as model airplanes at early ages and to participate in sports. Casey says girls’ math skills would benefit from the same encouragement.


8/29/1997 - D.C. Dept. of Corrections Settles Sexual Harassment Suit

The District of Columbia will pay $8 million to settle a sexual harassment suit filed by seven D.C. Department of Corrections employees in 1994. The plaintiffs allege that sexual harassment, including outright demands for sex and punishment for those who refused sex, pervaded the agency.

A federal court jury found for the plaintiffs in 1995 and awarded $1.4 million to six of the eight women. In August of 1996, a federal appeals court voided the 1995 decision and ordered a new trial on the grounds that U.S. District Judge Royce C. Lamberth erred in refusing the defense's request to call non-expert witnesses. Under the terms of yesterday's settlement, the eight plaintiff will share $1.6 million, or about 80% of what was awarded to them in the 1995 trial. Two other plaintiffs will receive $80,000 each and the large remainder of the settlement, minus the attorneys' $2 million fee, will be shared among women who worked at the agency between April 4, 1991 and July 22, 1997 and reported that they were harassed.


8/29/1997 - Military Jury Sentences Drill Instructor and Sgt. 1st Class

On Thursday in Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, Sgt. 1st Class Gary F. Alford was convicted on charges of sodomy, adultery, conspiring to violate a military regulation and three counts of violating a military regulation. He was sentenced to two years in prison. Alford was found not guilty of committing an indecent act with a trainee, perjury, sodomy, and four counts of violating a military regulation.

Also on Thursday, a military jury in Columbia, S.C., convicted Sgt. 1st Class Gary F. Alford of 15 counts of sexual misconduct and sentenced him to 4 years in prison for those crimes. Alford was acquitted on two rape counts.

Eight noncommissioned officers at Fort Leonard Wood have plead guilty to or been convicted of sex-related charges involving trainees since last November.


8/29/1997 - Mitsubishi Settles Private Bias Suit

Mitsubishi Motor Corporation has settled a lawsuit with 27 women who claim they were subjected to obscene remarks, unwanted touching, and sexual discrimination at the auto plant. Two of the original 29 plaintiffs chose not to participate in the settlement.

As part of the settlement agreement, Mitsubishi has agreed to donate $100,000 to women's causes and to make substantial cash payments to the plaintiffs. The amount of these payments has not been made public. A more extensive lawsuit, filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, accuses Mitsubishi of harassing more that 300 women and is not affected by the settlement of this private suit.


8/27/1997 - Women's Advocate Lucy S. Howorth Dies

Lucy S. Howorth, an accomplished lawyer and champion of women's rights, died on August 23rd of a heart attack. Howorth attended women's suffrage meetings with her mother and was known for her independent and determined spirit.

Howorth, as general counsel to the War Claims Commission, became one of the first women to hold this position at a federal agency. Howorth gave the opening address at Eleanor Roosevelt's 1944 White House Conference on Women in Postwar Policy Making and served on President John F. Kennedy's Commission on the Status of Women. Howorth was a former president of the Business and Professional Women's Club of Washington and a vice president for the American Association of University Women, where she defeated the AAUW's policy of racial segregation and led a task force on women's post-WWII employment opportunities. Howorth mentored and advised women throughout her long and successful career.


8/27/1997 - Victims of Violence Often Know Their Attackers

A new U.S. Justice Department report released on Sunday, August 24, reveals that nearly half of the 1.4 million people who received emergency-room treatment after a violent attack in 1994 were hurt by someone they knew. Seventeen percent of the victims were attacked by intimate partners such as their current or former spouses or by their boyfriends/girlfriends. Within the group of people abused by their spouses, women were 9 times more likely to be attacked than were men. Relatives composed 8% of the attackers and friends and acquaintances accounted for 23%. Strangers committed 23% of the attacks. The remaining thirty percent of attackers could not be categorized because the victim was not willing to acknowledge the abuse and/or to name the abuser. Bonnie J. Campbell, director of the Justice Department's Violence Against Women Office, stated that the results of this study confirm feminists' claims that domestic violence is highly unreported.