24 May 2022 - NPWJ News Digest on FGM & Women's Rights


When the Constitution was drafted, abortion was a choice left to women
The Washington Post, 23 May 2022

 In his draft decision that would overturn Roe v. Wade, Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. repeatedly emphasizes that the Constitution did not explicitly provide the right to abortion. No, it did not. Nor did it provide for any other medical care specifically, much less intimate care related to sex and reproduction. But Alito makes a profound mistake in assuming that this means people did not regard fertility management as an elemental and presumed part of women’s familial and social roles. At the time the Constitution was drafted, abortion was something women were supposed to take care of, away from the public sphere, as abortion had to do with sex, and with women’s "secret" and "shameful" parts. 

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Taliban enforces order for Afghan women TV anchors to cover faces
Al Jazeera, 22 May 2022

 Afghanistan’s Taliban rulers have started to enforce a new order requiring all female TV news anchors in the country to cover their faces while on air. After the order was announced Thursday, only a handful of news outlets complied. But on Sunday, most female anchors were seen with their faces covered after the Taliban’s Vice and Virtue Ministry began enforcing the decree.

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Group invades Cannes red carpet to highlight violence towards women
The Guardian, 22 May 2022

Protests about women’s safety have taken place at the Cannes film festival for the second time in a matter of days, after a group invaded the red carpet at a premiere of a film about the killing of sex workers. About 12 women went on to the red carpet before the screening of Holy Spider, carrying a banner with the first names of 129 women killed in France since the last time the festival was held. The group, dressed in black, also set off black smoke grenades as they paused on steps in front of the Palais des Festivals. According to Agence France-Presse, the group are members of the feminist group Les Colleuses.

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The Role Of STEM Education In Achieving Gender Equality
Forbes, 20 May 2022

 The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are "the blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all." The SDGs, also known as the Global Goals, were adopted by the United Nations in 2015 as a universal call to action to "address the global challenges we face, including those related to poverty, inequality, climate change, environmental degradation, peace and justice." There are 17 SDGs. Each acknowledges that action in one area will affect outcome in others. For example, "ending poverty must go hand-in-hand with strategies that build economic growth and address a range of social needs including education, health, social protection and job opportunities, while tackling climate change and environmental protection."

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Women at the last mile: How investments in gender equality have kept health systems running during COVID-19
ReliefWeb, 17 May 2022

Even before COVID-19, investments in health systems— and especially female health workers—were too low. In 2019 the world had a gap of 18 million health workers. Two years and 15 million deaths later, we have at least 26 million fewer health workers than we need. This leaves us severely underprepared for future pandemics and other major shocks to the health system, including conflict and climate change. We must invest in health systems that don’t just meet the needs of today, but that are also resilient in the face of future shocks. Pandemic preparedness requires gender equality: equal recognition, support, and fair pay for ALL health workers. Globally, 70% of health workers are women, but half of their work is unpaid.iv We must do more to support these health workers. The glimmers of success in COVID-19 built on previous investments in women health workers, their skills, and equality in health systems. Pre-existing investments in equality helped systems respond to COVID-19. Increased investments will build better resilience for the crises that come next.

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