1. Canadian Women’s Favourite Pick-up Line via Bev


     women  Canada 


     police  Ontario  women  assault 

  3. Mark Gonzales - As With Most Men


     men  women  poems 

  4. From the New York Times:

    Saodat Rakhimbayeva says she wishes she had died with her newborn baby.

    The 24-year-old housewife had a cesarean section in March and gave birth to Ibrohim, a premature boy who died three days later.

    Then came a further devastating blow: She learned that the surgeon had removed part of her uterus during the operation, making her sterile. The doctor told her the hysterectomy was necessary to remove a potentially cancerous cyst, while she believes he sterilized her as part of a state campaign to reduce birthrates.

    ”He never asked for my approval, never ran any checks, just mutilated me as if I were a mute animal,” the pale and fragile Rakhimbayeva said through tears while sitting at a fly-infested cafe in this central Uzbek city. ”I should have just died with Ibrohim.”

    According to rights groups, victims and health officials, Rakhimbayeva is one of hundreds of Uzbek women who have been surgically sterilized without their knowledge or consent in a program designed to prevent overpopulation from fueling unrest.


    Several health workers, who spoke on condition of anonymity also because they feared dismissal or persecution, said the authorities are especially eager to sterilize women with HIV, tuberculosis or a drug addiction. Instruments often are not sterilized properly and can infect other women, they said.

    Inexperienced medical workers can also cause serious health complications. ”Any negligence can do a lot of damage,” said Shakhlo Tursunova, a gynecologist from Tashkent.

    Health workers involved in the campaign are threatened with salary cuts, demotion or dismissal if they do not persuade at least two women a month to be sterilized, a former high-ranking Health Ministry official told the AP on condition of anonymity.


     Uzbekistan  health  women  sterilization 

  5. Ten Things You Should Know About International Women’s Rights

    mohandasgandhi : crashintome9 : caraobrien :


    1. One in three women die or are seriously injured as a result of gender-based violence. Violence against women results in more deaths among women ages 15 to 44 than the total number of women who die because of war, malaria and cancer.

    2. An estimated four million women and girls are bought and sold worldwide each year, either into marriage, prostitution or slavery.

    3. One out of every six American women have been the victim of an attempted or completed rape in their lifetime. An estimated 60 percent of all rapes are not reported to the police.

    4. Approximately 96 million young women in developing countries still cannot read or write. Globally, girls account for 55 percent of children not in school.

    5. Nearly 75 percent of those displaced by violent conflict are women. Displacement leaves women without access to health care, proper nutrition or education. Displaced women face a higher threat of gender-based terrorism and violence.

    6. The 1994 genocide in Rwanda resulted in hundreds of thousands of violent sexual assaults, resulting in an estimated 250,000 women falling victim to HIV/AIDS. While many women awaiting treatment died, their perpetrators receive antiretroviral therapies in prison.

    7. Saudi Arabia is the only country in the world that actually denies women the right to vote by law. In other parts of the world, where women are legally allowed to vote, many women still struggle to exercise their rights. For example, in Afghanistan, some women were denied the right to vote in 2009 because the country lacked the necessary amount of female staff members to provide enough polls for women.

    8. With its rate of violence, sexual assault and inadequate health care, Afghanistan remains the most dangerous place in the world for women to live.

    9. In 1974, Isabel Peron became the world’s first woman president, when she was elected President of Argentina. Around the world, 68 women have served as head of state in their country (not including monarchies). Currently, 38 women serve as head of government around the world. In 1997, Ireland became the first country to succeed power from one female president to another.

    10. African nations have more women in parliament than most western nations. Rwanda ranks number one in world rankings for the highest representation of women at 49 percent.



     human rights  women  violence 

  6. A 10-year Adelaide study has busted the myth that women use abortion as birth control.



    A Flinders University study of 965 women over 30 who used Adelaide’s largest abortion clinic found 62 per cent were using contraception when they became pregnant.

    Nursing and Midwifery researcher Wendy Abigail said the vast majority of the remainder of women also had not wanted to become pregnant.

    She said they were not using contraception for dozens of reasons such as: cultural bans, thinking they could never have children, having been raped or having had what was thought to have been “permanent” birth-control surgery.

    Ms Abigail blamed primarily male politicians for perpetuating the myth that women used termination as a convenience rather than for emotional and medical reasons.

    “People have preconceived ideas which relate to education, what their friends think and what their own values are,” she said.

    “These comments are not based on research but on personal and societal views.

    “There are so many shades of grey, though right-to-life people portray it as a black-and-white issue.”

    Ms Abigail said the finding, which was published in the Australian Journal of Primary Health, added to earlier research that showed 70 per cent of women under 30 were also on contraception when they became pregnant and then sought a termination.

    She said further research was needed to find out how many of the women who were not using contraception also did not want to become pregnant.

    “There are many reasons why women don’t use contraception, for instance domestic violence situations where the man controls what contraception is used,” Ms Abigail said. “Just because women are not using contraception doesn’t mean they want to get pregnant. “That’s what we need the additional research for and hard facts.”

    She said the current research also dispelled the myth that termination was increasingly being used for convenience, with no significant changes in trends of conception used during the study period 1996-2006.

    Ms Abigail said evidence of the failure of birth control used by the women in the study could be used to reduce the number of unwanted pregnancies.

    “Contraception does have a failure rate and with the change in fertility patterns, policies and health promotion activities need to be further developed to address this, particularly for women aged over 30 years,” she said. (emphasis mine)

    (via Adelaide Now)>

    Link to article. Great news, debunking anti-abortion myths is always a good thing. ~ waif

    Fucking expensive method of contraception, if you ask me.


     abortion  health  women 

  7. From the Globe & Mail:

    Abortion is strictly outlawed in Tanzania in virtually all circumstances. The word itself is taboo, rarely spoken in polite society. Yet it takes only a few minutes to find a man in the backroom of a slum neighbourhood pharmacy who is quite willing to perform an illegal abortion.

    His shabby dispensary is on a dusty street in Manzese, the biggest squatter community in Tanzania’s biggest city. It’s become known as a place for desperate women to go.

    The Globe and Mail asked a Tanzanian man to pose as the boyfriend of a young woman wanting an abortion. He was referred to a man in a white coat, in a backroom, who appeared to be a doctor. After a brief warning that the procedure was illegal, the white-coated man began haggling over the price, agreeing eventually to do it for the equivalent of about $18. “It should be done before one o’clock because inspectors pass by in the afternoon,” he told his customer. “The government doesn’t allow it, so don’t tell anyone. It has to be a secret.”

    Unsafe abortions, especially those done covertly or illegally, are one of the leading causes of maternal deaths in Africa, killing at least 25,000 women annually and injuring a staggering 1.7 million every year. Many are maimed or killed by horrific “home remedies” that include catheters, roots or herbs placed in their vaginas to induce bleeding.

    One-seventh of African deaths in pregnancy and childbirth, and nearly one-fifth in Tanzania, are caused by complications from unsafe abortions. Yet governments in Africa – and Canada – are reluctant to discuss the problem, even as Ottawa puts maternal health on top of the agenda for the G8 summit next month.


    The failure to reduce Africa’s maternal death rate is partly due to the political and cultural sensitivity of some of the leading causes: abortion, AIDS, early marriage, genital mutilation and the unequal status of women. Many African countries are so culturally conservative that their politicians are unwilling to consider any liberalization of abortion laws – despite strong evidence that illegal abortions are killing and maiming thousands of women.

    emphasis mine



     abortion  Africa  women  health 

  8. From the National Post:

    The number of women starting federal prison sentences in Canada has grown by more than 50% in the past decade — a “troubling trend” that experts say will only get worse as the Conservative government moves toward harsher laws and order measures.

    Most concerning, they say, is that the small pool of incarcerated women share many common traits: They are primarily poor or homeless, undereducated and have addictions or mental-health problems such as schizophrenia, depression and anxiety disorders.

    Almost all of them — 82%, according to advocacy group Elizabeth Fry Society — have a history of sexual or physical abuse. That figure rises to 91% for aboriginal women.


    "There’s a much larger over-representation of aboriginal women and women with mental health issues than men, so they’re being disproportionately impacted by that lack of preventive measures, and social welfare, and appropriate health-care services," he said.


    Moreover, the number of aboriginal women serving federal time has jumped 90% since 2001, with aboriginal women now representing 33% of women behind bars, although they make up only three% of the female population.

    While aboriginal men are also over-represented in federal prisons, their figures have grown 17% in that time, according to Mr. Zinger.

    Women are twice as likely to have a mental-health-problem diagnosis at the time of admission to custody than men — with 30% of women having been admitted to a psychiatric hospital before being incarcerated, compared to 14.5% of men.

    "If the mental-health system, for example, is failing, then some of the behaviour linked to symptoms of mental health are now being criminalized, and that can certainly contribute to the rising numbers," Mr. Zinger said.


     Canada  women  health  prisons 

  9. From Gary Leupp:

    If you’re trying to explain to friends and family why you oppose the war in Afghanistan, you can find much useful information in the latest “Report on Progress Toward Security and Stability in Afghanistan.”


    The fifth such report has just been released. It does not in fact report “progress” but tells us, among other things:

    The U.S. military has designated in Afghanistan 80 “Key Terrain districts” (“districts where the bulk of the population is concentrated, and that contain centers of economic productivity, key infrastructure, and key commerce routes connecting such areas to each other and to the outside world”) and 41 “Area of Interest districts” (“districts that, for a variety of reasons, exert influence on Key Terrain districts to a degree that renders it necessary to focus information collection and operational resources upon them to support operations in the Key Terrain districts”). These surround the three main highways linking the major cities.

    The International Security Assistance Force (ISAF)—-the international force which is overwhelmingly U.S. with diminishing NATO and other participation—-only has “the resources to conduct operations in 48 focus districts.” Thus even as the U.S. forces climb to 98,000 by August by order of President Obama, ISAF will be unable to operate in most key districts. Several key generals have noted that the war cannot be won militarily. This report tacitly admits that victory would require a huge further “surge.” (This at a time when ISAF is planning an assault on Kandahar opposed by the local people and even the Karzai regime, which politically fearing too intimate an association with the invaders has invited the U.S. to fix a deadline for withdrawal.)

    The report states, “Violence is sharply above the seasonal average for the previous year - an 87% increase from February 2009 to March 2010.” It spiked during the election last September. As U.S. troops sought to “stabilize” areas so that the balloting could be held—-and upheld to the world as an instance of “democracy” conferred upon the Afghans by the invaders—- Karzai rigged his re-election. (And got away with it, however much U.S. officials were obliged to express distaste. It’s not like they have many Afghans willing to work with them.) The increase in occupation forces has contributed to the increase in violence.

    The report tells us: “The overall assessment indicates that the population sympathizes [as of March 2010] with or supports the Afghan Government in 24% (29 of 121) of all Key Terrain and Area of Interest districts.”


    The report notes, “Afghan women and girls can still be sent to prison for ‘moral crimes,’ including fleeing domestic violence or eloping. Many State Department rule of law and human rights programs help civil society organizations and Afghan policymakers advocate for reform of such discriminatory laws…”

    In other words, all that pre-war hype (including from Laura Bush, taking over her husband’s weekly radio address in November 2001) about freeing the Afghan women from the burqa etc. was just that—-cynical hype. The fact is the Afghan war proponents have all along tried to enlist women in their cause arguing that the invasion was necessary to liberate women. The point was not so much to liberate anybody but to vilify the Taliban for their misogyny for political propaganda purposes. It worked in the short term but now with all these reports of continued abuse of women (with the backing of current legal authorities) it gets hard for U.S. officials to posture as any kind of moral authorities in Afghanistan.

    Full article at The Smirking Chimp


     war  Afghanistan  women  Hamid Karzai 

  10. wtftory:

    The cuts have come to light in the wake of Conservative Senator Nancy Ruth’s blunt advice to foreign-aid groups earlier this week.

    She warned groups they’ll face a backlash if they don’t “shut the …. [fuck] up” on Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s refusal to include abortion in his G8 maternal health initiative.

    Related: Senator’s profanity reveals Tory ‘culture of intimidation,’ critics say


     women  health  Canada  politics  Conservatives  Tories 

  11. The Conservative government has declared that it will not support foreign-aid projects that include abortion.

    “Canada’s contribution to maternal and child health may involve various interventions, including family planning, which includes the use of contraceptive methods. The details remain to be determined; however, Canada’s contribution will not include funding of abortions,” Bev Oda, the federal minister of international co-operation told reporters in Halifax Monday after she arrived for a meeting of G8 development ministers.

    Toronto Star


     Canada  women  Tories  Conservatives  abortion 

  12. The United Nations issued a direct, public appeal to Canada Tuesday, asking for the country’s help with the international peacekeeping operation in the troubled Democratic Republic of the Congo.

    The challenge to Canada to step up was echoed repeatedly by residents in Goma on a day when Governor-General Michaëlle Jean arrived amid tight security as violence rose in regions of the country.

    A possible UN pullout at this critical stage has soldiers, civilians, and men and women of Goma fearing a wholesale withdrawal will leave people at the mercy of vicious armed groups hiding in the jungle.


    It is widely expected here Canadian Gen. Andrew Leslie will get the nod from Ottawa and members of the Security Council to take over command of the UN mission in Congo, and will bring with him up to 100 top-level officers to support the mission.

    The question swirling around political circles in Canada is whether the Stephen Harper government will back Leslie with Canadian troops, effectively redeploying soldiers from Afghanistan where Parliament has set a mid-2011 deadline to begin a pullout.

    Toronto Star


     Congo  DRC  violence  women  rape  peacekeeping  UN 

  13. (via lakarune)


     Uganda  women  politics 

  14. The FDLR (a Rwandan Hutu militia linked to the 1994 genocide) showed up at Generose’s home and demanded money. She gave them everything she had — $120 — but they wanted more. They started beating her husband and Generose cried out to alert her neighbors. As punishment they killed her husband and then cut off Generose’s leg, cooked it over the fire, and told the children to eat the leg. Her nine-year old son refused so they killed him. The other children did as they were told. [The militia members] tried to burn them alive, but her children managed to drag her out of the house and save her. Next door, they killed an entire wedding party. That kind of attack, where 30 or 50 people are killed at one time, was standard in the village of Kaniola.

    Lisa Shannon - From Oprah to Congo: One Woman’s Attempt to Save Thousands (via caraobrien)

    Lisa Shannon is the author of A Thousand Sisters. From the book’s website:

    A Thousand Sisters chronicles how I raised sponsorships for Congolese women, beginning with a solo 30-mile run, and then founded Run for Congo Women. Despite countless warnings, with no credentials, I abandon my quickly collapsing home life and plunge into an unlikely lone journey through eastern Congo on a mission to ignite a movement for the world’s most forgotten women, to meet hundreds of my sponsored “sisters,” and hear their stories firsthand. But in a place where no man with a gun is the good guy, I confront militias, massacres, murder cover-ups, and unspeakable horror.

    Lisa also provides some very accesible resources on the conflict.


     women  FDLR  DRC 

  15. Liberia: Microfinance - United Nations Development Programme (YouTube)

    Improving the economic situation of women is key to peace-building efforts in Liberia following a civil war that tore the country apart and left 75 percent of its people in extreme poverty. UNDP, with funds from Denmark, has set up revolving microloans that provide funds to women entrepreneurs, many of whom are heads of households. Women make up 80 percent of the informal sector in Liberians economy


     Liberia  economy  women  microloans