feminist news round-up 2.1.12
black women enlisting at higher rates in US military
Black women now represent nearly a third of all women in the US armed forces, according to a study by the Pew Research Center. Their representation in the military, which is at about 31 per cent, accounts for twice the number of black women in the civilian population. It confirms what military experts have known for years: that black women are a crucial source of new recruits for the Army and the Air Force. As a matter of comparison, black men represent about 16 per cent of the enlisted population. You can read more here.
aussie women turn to US sperm donors
A shortage of Australian sperm donors has led IVF Australia to import sperm from the US. The drop in donations, according to Fertility Specialist Professor Peter Illingworth, is directly linked to changes made to donating laws which require all sperm donors to provide identifying information so that the child would be able to contact them once they reached 18. ‘There is no doubt that when the law was first introduced, it affected the number of men willing to donate sperm. It is a big undertaking. Being a donor is very serious and the fact is, not many men are willing to do it,’ he said. You can read more here.
young women drop out of workforce and head back to school
For the first time in thirty years, there are more women in school than in the workforce. Unlike their male counterparts, who will ‘take any job they can get, women are postponing their working lives to get more education and upgrade their skills. According to economists, the long-term consequence is a generation of women with a significant advantage over men. You can read more here.
egypt bans forced virginity tests by military
An Egyptian court has ordered a halt to forced virginity tests on female detainees in military prisons. The verdict was welcomed by hundreds of people, including human rights organisations, but a top army official has declared the tests necessary when it comes to possible charges of rape. An army general, who spoke to CNN on the condition of anonymity, also defended the practice. The court ruled, however, that violating young women’s bodies was no way to protect against possible charges of rape. You can read more here.
child bride tells of torture by mother-in-law
An Afghan child bride has spoken out about her ordeal of being held captive in a toilet for six months and tortured by her mother-in-law who beat her, burned her with cigarettes and pulled out her fingernails, all because she defied her in-laws who tried to push her into prostitution. She was denied food and water and was suffering severe blood loss and psychological problems when she was admitted to hospital. Afghan health minister Dr Suraya Dalil says the case is an example of ‘increased cases of violence against women in Afghanistan.’ You can read more here.
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