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Restricting Women’s Clothing – and Freedom Featured Human Rights 

Restricting Women’s Clothing – and Freedom

Belgium (HRW) – European Court Upholds Ban on Face Coverings The European Court of Human Rights has struck another blow to women’s autonomy, ruling in favor of bans on full-face veils enacted in 2011 in Belgium. Echoing a 2014 ruling in S.A.S v. France, the court cited the vague idea of “living together” as justification for the bans. Nowhere does the European Convention on Human Rights state that “living together” can be adequate grounds for restricting rights. The court accepted the Belgian government’s argument that wearing clothing that obstructs the face is “incompatible, in Belgian society, with social communication and, more generally the establishment of Read More

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#SleevelessFriday: Lawmakers Bare Arms in the House of Representatives Featured Politics Women 

#SleevelessFriday: Lawmakers Bare Arms in the House of Representatives

United States (GREED) – Women Representatives exercised their right to bare arms in the House of Representatives Friday, showing support for a push to modernize the House dress code. Controversy arose, according to The Hill, after women journalists were denied entry to the Speaker’s lobby for wearing sleeveless tops and/or open-toed shoes. Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan, defended the sergeant-in-arms decision, based upon historical use of the dress code: “The sergeant-at-arms was simply enforcing the same interpretation of the rules as under my predecessors. It’s nothing new and certainly not something that I devised. At the same time, Read More

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Brazil’s Zika Epidemic Undercovers Human Rights Issues Unaimed 

Brazil’s Zika Epidemic Undercovers Human Rights Issues

São Paulo (HRW) – Brazil has not addressed longstanding human rights problems that allowed the Zika outbreak to escalate, leaving the population vulnerable to future outbreaks and other serious public health risks, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The government declared an end to the national public health emergency related to the Zika virus in May 2017, but the Zika threat in Brazil remains. The 103-page report, “Neglected and Unprotected: The Impact of the Zika Outbreak on Women and Girls in Northeastern Brazil,” documents gaps in the Brazilian authorities’ response that have a harmful impact on women and girls and leave Read More

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Forgetting About Girls in Afghanistan – Again Featured Human Rights 

Forgetting About Girls in Afghanistan – Again

Afghanistan (HRW) – Robot Visits US, Afghan Girls Stuck at Home We want to make a difference and most breakthroughs in science, technology, and other industries normally start with the dream of a child to do something great. – Team Afghanistan’s statement on the competition website They seized the chance to study in a country that has long denied that advantage to many girls. They excelled in science and technology – a male-dominated field. And they competed successfully to represent their country against some of the brightest young minds in the world. But, after overcoming these improbable odds, a robotics team of six Afghan girls Read More

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The Highs and Lows of One Hectic Day in Northern Ireland’s Abortion Struggle Health Human Rights 

The Highs and Lows of One Hectic Day in Northern Ireland’s Abortion Struggle

Ireland (Conversation) – The deal struck by the Democratic Unionist Party to prop up Theresa May’s Conservative minority government in London has led to unprecedented interest in the politics of Northern Ireland. This interest intensified on June 29, when several key developments in the debate around access to abortion occurred at once. Northern Ireland has one of the most restrictive and punitive abortion laws in the world. Abortion is prohibited unless pregnancy poses a threat to the woman’s life or a serious permanent or long-term threat to her physical or mental health. Breach of this criminal prohibition could result Read More

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What Is Sharia Law? A Woman Professor of Islamic Studies Explains Culture 

What Is Sharia Law? A Woman Professor of Islamic Studies Explains

World (Intellectual Takeout) – My knowledge of Sharia Law is modest. So when I came across an article on The Conversation—“What Sharia law means: Five questions answered”—written by Indiana University professor Asma Afsaruddin, I decided to learn a little more about it. I’m glad I did this, because apparently a lot of my assumptions on Sharia Law were just plain wrong. Afsaruddin opens her article by explaining the fundamental objectives of Sharia Law: “Sharia provides guidance on how to live an ethical life. It lays down guidelines on how to pray and how to treat one’s family members, neighbors Read More

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Badass Women Not Enough People Are Talking About: Nobel Women’s Initative Activism Badass Women Women 

Badass Women Not Enough People Are Talking About: Nobel Women’s Initative

World (openDemocracy) – The rising backlash against women’s rights, as well as that against activists of all stripes, was infused with new and terrifyingly overt vigor with the campaigning tactics of Donald Trump leading up to the dumbfounding results of the US presidential elections last November. But perhaps for many, equally as surprising has been the massive, and mostly nonviolent opposition in the US to Mr. Trump’s dystopian agenda that favors the rich and Wall Street at the expense of the poor and middle classes, its sexist assault on women’s rights, and the fact that it doesn’t give one whit Read More

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Badass Women Not Enough People Are Talking About: Women Standing Up Against Child Marriage in Mozambique Activism Badass Women Culture 

Badass Women Not Enough People Are Talking About: Women Standing Up Against Child Marriage in Mozambique

World (New Internationalist) – For many, the gentle rushing sound of the ocean lapping at the shore symbolizes freedom. It conjures images of exotic horizons, paradise islands and beach-hut bars. For Flavia Fioretta, the ocean waves also mean freedom. They remind her of the trip she took with her mother to Tofo beach in Inhambane, Mozambique, when she was 14 years old, just before she was forced by her father to marry. She says it is the last time she remembers being truly free. Flavia’s story is typical of many girls in Mozambique. She fell pregnant when she was 14. She felt too Read More

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No Heels, No Make-Up, No Problem? UK Women Battle Sexist Workplace Dress Codes Women 

No Heels, No Make-Up, No Problem? UK Women Battle Sexist Workplace Dress Codes

United Kingdom (Sputnik) – Sexist employee practices are on the rise, according to new research released on Wednesday. Employers in the UK are telling female workers that they must have plunging necklines and wear high heels. One black female employee was denied a job at the Harrods department store in London because she refused to wear a wig. The stories documented in the UK parliament investigation were told by female employees, they include accounts of employers requesting that women wear revealing outfits and that they reapply make-up. These experiences were unearthed by a UK parliamentary report High Heels and Workplace Dress Codes into the case of a Read More

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