Women’s Rights

Mitsutoki Shigeta: ‘Baby factory’ dad wins paternity rights

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A Bangkok court has awarded paternity rights to a Japanese man over 13 babies he fathered through Thai surrogate mothers. BBC The ruling allows Mitsutoki Shigeta, 28, to pursue custody of the children. The son of a wealthy entrepreneur, he caused controversy in 2014 when he was revealed to have fathered 16 babies via surrogates in Thailand. His so-called “baby factory” case and others led to Thailand banning commercial surrogacy for foreigners. Mr Shigeta, who was not present at the ... Read More »

When judges wear wigs and robes, what’s so offensive about a niqab?

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The statue representing justice is blindfolded for a reason – to symbolise that all people are treated equally in our courts no matter their wealth, position in society or religious beliefs. Duncan Fine The Age Sometimes the courts fail to live up to that ideal. This week Justice Christopher Beale in the Victorian Supreme Court banned a woman who was wearing a niqab from sitting in the public area of the court where her husband is facing a trial on ... Read More »

Anti-Abortion Democrat Loses Key Support To Progressive Challenger

UNITED STATES - JANUARY 17: Marie Newman, candidate for Congress in IL-03, speaks to reporters after receiving the endorsement of Reps. Jan Schakowsky, D-Ill., and Rep. Luis Gutierrez, D-Ill., in Washington on Wednesday, Jan. 17, 2018. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Marie Newman’s campaign against Rep. Dan Lipinski (D-Ill.) is getting a big boost from EMILY’s List By Daniel Marans HuffPost EMILY’s List, the fundraising group that backs pro-abortion rights Democratic women, on Friday endorsed Illinois progressive Marie Newman’s campaign against Rep. Dan Lipinski (D-Ill.), one of the last anti-abortion Democrats in Congress. Support from EMILY’s List, a fundraising powerhouse closely aligned with Democratic Party leadership, gives Newman a major boost in her effort to unseat Lipinski in the March 20 ... Read More »

Patchwork abortion laws a lottery for women

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Every Australian should have access to the health services they need. Full stop. This shouldn’t be a controversial statement, but when it comes to reproductive health services, it seems it still is. Tanya Plibersek * Brisbane Times Abortion is one of the most common medical procedures that Australian women will experience in their lives. But our patchwork of abortion laws and holes in service provision mean more and more women are having to travel interstate. Tasmania’s only provider of surgical ... Read More »

Thanks, L’Oréal, but I’m growing weary of this hijab fetish

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Amena Khan’s role in a new ad campaign, though short-lived, shows how the industry struggles to represent Muslim women Nesrine Malik The Guardian This month Amena Khan became the first hijabi model to star in a global mainstream hair campaign. L’Oréal, which featured her in its advert, apparently wanted to promote an important message: hair care is for everyone, whether or not they choose to show their hair in public. I’m not sure who exactly thinks that women in hijab don’t care ... Read More »

Iranian woman skydiver looks to break down stereotypes

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For Iranian parachuting enthusiast Bahareh Sassani, skydiving is “a way to prove that women are just as capable as men” — a small step from a big height for women’s equality in her country. TEHRAN – Agence France-Presse Hurriyet The 35-year-old accountant has been skydiving less than two years but already has more than 220 jumps under her belt. “I encourage all women to try this experience. It gives you the feeling you can do whatever you want. Women should ... Read More »

Margaret Atwood faces feminist backlash on social media over #MeToo

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The Canadian author’s defence of due process for those accused of sexual misconduct sparked online ire Ashifa Kassam in Toronto The Guardian Canadian author Margaret Atwood is facing a social media backlash after voicing concerns about the #MeToo movement and calling for due process in the case of a former university professor accused of sexual misconduct. Writing in the Globe and Mail, Atwood described the #MeToo movement, which emerged in the wake of sexual assault allegations against Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, as a “massive ... Read More »

Women speak out against #metoo ‘witch hunt’

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HOLLYWOOD is full of women speaking out about harassment These high-profile women are against the movement AFP FRANCE’S most revered actress, Catherine Deneuve, declared Tuesday that men should be “free to hit on” women, condemning a new “puritanism” she claimed has been sparked by sexual harassment scandals. She was one of around 100 French women writers, performers and academics who wrote an open letter deploring the wave of “denunciations” that has followed claims that Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein sexually assaulted ... Read More »

Can juries deliver justice to sexual assault victims?

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It seems we’re in an era where every time we read the news there is a new case of sexual assault While the #metoo campaign flooded my social media newsfeed and The Silence Breakers came forward, I stayed quiet. Emily Cole The Age Not because I haven’t been a victim. Just like one in six women (at least) in Australia, I too have been sexually assaulted. I stayed quiet because I was serving on a jury of a child sexual ... Read More »

Somaliland passes first law against rape

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For the first time in its history, the self-declared republic of Somaliland has passed a law against rape. BBC In the past, a victim’s family could force them to marry their rapist to avoid being shamed. Rapists now stand to face at least 30 years in prison. Somaliland declared itself independent from Somalia in 1991 but is not internationally recognised as a country. There is still no law against rape in Somalia. Somaliland’s speaker of parliament, Bashe Mohamed Farah, told ... Read More »

Oireachtas committee has opened the door to abortion for disability

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If no reasons for abortion need be given in the first 12 weeks any reason will do William Binchy The Irish Times The report of the Joint Oireachtas Committee on the Eighth Amendment of the Constitution is a dismal document It proposes the introduction of abortion on demand, expressly for the first twelve weeks of the child’s life, and covertly at all stages potentially up to birth. The majority of the committee proposes the abortion of unborn children in the ... Read More »

Muslim women will not misuse the ‘triple talaq’ law

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Immediately after the Indian government announced a bill criminalising “triple talaq”, the proposal has been mired in controversy. Mariya Salim AlJazeera Banning the practice of a husband divorcing his wife by uttering “talaq” three times within Muslim communities has been under discussion in India for years now. The practice has rendered hundreds of Muslim women homeless, forced out of their matrimonial homes overnight, with many learning that they have been divorced from relatives, by phone or even by a text message. A recent ... Read More »

Publicly, We Say #MeToo. Privately, We Have Misgivings.

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You can be sure that this weekend at the Golden Globes, Hollywood celebrities, not exactly known for their independent thinking, will turn the red carpet into a #MeToo moment replete with designer duds. Daphne Merkin The New York Times Many have promised to wear black dresses to protest the stream of allegations against industry moguls and actors. Perhaps Meryl Streep will get grilled — again — about what she knew about Harvey Weinstein. The rest of us will diligently follow ... Read More »

Iceland has made it illegal to pay men more than women

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ICELAND is the first nation in the world to legally ensure women are paid equally to men David Bol TheScotsman The Arctic country has passed legislation meaning companies and government agencies that employ more than 25 workers, will be forced to receive official certification from the government for their equal-pay policies. The law came into effect in Monday and companies failing to demonstrate equal pay could be fined. Dagny Osk Aradottir Pind, board member of the Icelandic Women’s Rights Association, ... Read More »

Taiwan court orders dentist to pay mother for raising him

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Taiwan’s top court has ordered a dentist to pay his mother around Tw$22.3 million ($744,000) as reimbursement for the money she spent raising and educating him. TAIPEI – Agence France-Presse Hurriyet  The supreme court Jan. 2 upheld a previous ruling that the 41-year-old, identified by his family name Chu, should honor a contract he signed with his mother 20 years ago promising to refund her. The plaintiff, surnamed Lo, divorced her husband in 1990 and raised their two sons on ... Read More »

Forgotten in hell: Half of abducted Iraqi Yazidi girls remain in ISIS captivity & sex slavery

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15yo Nadi could barely speak when RT crew met her just a few hours after she was bought out after years of slavery for $2,500 – not the highest ransom by far, as ISIS terrorists fetch $10,000 on average for young Yazidi girls. RT Nadi is one of thousands of Yazidi girls, captured and then enslaved by Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS) terrorists who would turn the girls – often no older than 10 years – into forced laborers, sex ... Read More »