Womens Justice Center




















News Round-up ~ Resumen de noticias


 

 Former President Jimmy Carter

Speaks Out On Abolishing Prostitution

In a May 2015 address to an Atlanta Summit on Ending Sexual Exploitation,
Former President Jimmy Carter said,

“I would like to see each city and state in the United States adopt the Nordic model law.”

- Former President Jimmy Carter May 2015

carter & vendita

Former President Jimmy Carter and Breaking Free’s Vednita Carter
are connected by a common goal: ending prostitution & trafficking.

 

“The most serious human rights violation on earth is the abuse of women and girls, and prostitution is the foundation for all other abuses of women and girls.”- Former President Jimmy Carter May 2015

“The reason for [prostitution’s] expansion is the men who don’t care whether this abuse continues. Men enjoy the privilege arising from prostitution. It was the same when I was a child in Georgia: we had official legal separation of the races. White men derived a great benefit from the subjugation of Black people. White men got the best jobs, the best schools, they were on juries. We overcame that. But this problem of the greatest human rights abuse continues.” – Former President Jimmy Carter May 2015

ARTICLE

 

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La Oficina de la Mujer de la Corte Suprema de Justicia de la Nación elaboró una Guía interactiva de estándares internacionales sobre derechos de las mujeres. Esta herramienta ha sido ideada con el propósito de facilitar el acceso y conocimiento a las normas internacionales, fallos y otros documentos elaborados por organismos del sistema regional y universal de derechos humanos. Por medio de una categorización amplia de los derechos de las mujeres y subcategorías más específicas, permite una búsqueda rápida de normas, fallos o recomendaciones internacionales sobre un tema concreto.
 
     Los estándares que allí se encuentran retoman textualmente sus fuentes. Además, se indica la cita y se habilita un link al documento completo. La información es de acceso público, a través de la página web de la Oficina de la Mujer, Argentina.
 
 
 

 

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Contact:

Taina Bien-Aimé

Coalition Against Trafficking in Women

media@catwinternational.org

(212) 643-9895

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

U.S. Congress Takes a Momentous Stand Against Human Trafficking

Anti-Trafficking Organization Celebrates Passage of Groundbreaking Law

 

New York, May 19, 2015 - The Coalition Against Trafficking in Women (CATW) applauds the U.S. Congress for passing the Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act (JVTA), the first comprehensive bill to address domestic human trafficking.  It now awaits the signature of President Barack Obama to become law.

 

The JVTA creates a new funding stream to finance services for U.S. trafficking victims. Up to $30 million of the innovative funding mechanism will come from $5,000 fines on perpetrators of crimes ranging from human trafficking to child pornography. The legislation also redefines federal law to clarify that sex buyers of children and human trafficking victims can be prosecuted as traffickers.

 

"Not only will the JVTA finance services for U.S. victims of trafficking, it puts the onus on sex buyers who cause the devastating harm. We finally have strong federal legislation that aims to prevent the demand for sex trafficking and commercial sexual exploitation," says Taina Bien-Aimé, executive director of CATW.

 

One of the JVTA's most important provisions requires the Department of Justice to incorporate demand reduction strategies into all human trafficking training programs. Survivors have been key in demanding more accountability from commercial sex buyers who cause extensive harm to those they exploit. As a result, the JVTA also creates a new U.S. Advisory Council on Human Trafficking, with at least eight survivors, to make recommendations to the US Government on anti-trafficking strategies.

 

"This victory is not only the result of successful collaborations across political and ideological lines, but it is a testament to the power of survivors enlightening us with the best solutions to end trafficking and exploitation," says Bien-Aimé.

 

The Coalition Against Trafficking in Women (CATW) is a non-governmental organization working to end human trafficking and the commercial sexual exploitation of women and girls worldwide. CATW engages in advocacy, education, victim services and prevention programs for victims of trafficking and prostitution in Asia, Africa, Latin America, Europe and North America. www.catwinternational.org

 

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from IntLawGrrls

EXCERPT: In the summer of 2014, fieldwork research was conducted as part of a doctoral thesis entitled, “Strengthening Women’s Reproductive Rights in the Inter-American Human Rights System: Gender, Reparations and Reproductive Justice.” Upon completion of interviews with actors engaged in work on reproductive rights in the Inter-American System, a report entitled, “Women’s Reproductive Rights in the Inter-American System of Human Rights: Conclusions from the Field, June-September 2014,” was distributed to interview participants. The objectives of the report were (1) to examine the María Mamerita Mestanza Chávez v. Peru (2003), Paulina del Carmen Jacinto Ramírez v. Mexico (2007), and Artavia Murillo et al. v. Costa Rica (2012) cases, in order to understand how reproductive rights cases develop, and the subsequent challenges and advancements; (2) and to learn from these cases in order to suggest recommendations for how actors can make better use of the Inter-American System as one of several avenues for fulfilling women’s reproductive rights.  The report identifies three main challenges to the implementation and enjoyment of women’s reproductive rights: (1) limited understanding and institutionalization of ‘gender'; (2) ineffective or nonexistent collaboration between actors; and (3) inadequate development, implementation, and compliance-monitoring of reparation measures. The report also recommends strategies in order to achieve a more efficient Inter-American System when dealing with reproductive rights: (1) creating a tradition of gender-based reparations; (2) using theConvention of Belém do Pará consistently and constantly in litigation efforts; and (3) institutionalizing gender training in the Inter-American System. 

As human rights law is increasingly utilized as a tool in the advancement of women’s reproductive rights, it is essential for actors to engage in every opportunity to reflect on advancements and missed opportunities. The intention of this report is to play a small role in that process of reflection.

Report in both English and Spanish. The author welcomes any questions, comments, and additional information @ c.o-connell [at] sussex.ac.uk.

 

 

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Webinar | May 29, 2015 | 3:00PM-4:00PM EDT
Presented by Viktoria Kristiansson, Attorney Advisor, AEquitas and
Kathryn Walker, Criminal Justice Fellow, National Center on Criminal Justice and Disability, The Arc 

People with developmental disabilities face myriad issues and unique challenges when encountering the justice system. The traumatic impact of sexual assault may further exacerbate already-existing issues. Developmental disabilities may impact a victim’s participation in a criminal investigation and testimony at trial. Prosecutors must be prepared to address the impact of the developmental disability on the victim and on the dynamics of the crime, particularly when assessing the offender's behaviors, victim selection, and steps taken to perpetrate the crime. 

This webinar will prepare prosecutors to anticipate issues and evidence prior to trial; file and argue pretrial motions; develop trial strategies that take into account the victim’s intellectual or developmental disabilities, as well as any mental health issues; introduce relevant evidence at trial while excluding the irrelevant; and consider appropriate sentencing options.

Click here to register for this webinar.


 


 
Recent Webinar Recordings
 Recent Publications
 

 

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On Friday, Yamani Hernandez steps into the role of executive director at the National Network of Abortion Funds (NNAF). In that position, she will lead almost 100 nonprofits nationwide that help people fund their abortion procedures and offer other types of assistance. The 37-year-old Chicago native recently chatted with RH Reality Check about her work to build a broad human rights movement that lives up to its inclusive values, her unconventional professional trajectory, and the people who inspired and stoked her activism.

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La aclamada escritora Selva Almada, autora de "Chicas muertas", libro en el que aborda tres femicidios que quedaron impunes en la década del 80, habló con Infobae sobre la inquietante ola de crímenes contra mujeres que sacude el país y que provocó una inminente marcha

-Vos escribiste "Chicas muertas" a partir de casos de femicidios que te impactaron cuando eras chica. ¿Creés que el problema de la violencia contra las mujeres se ha agravado en la actualidad?

La violencia de género y su expresión máxima, el femicidio, son prácticas comunes en una sociedad como la nuestra, patriarcal y misógina. No podemos trazar una perspectiva histórica porque estos datos no existen, porque estos hechos han sido naturalizados y, por ende, invisibilizados. Pero no tengo dudas de que no es un problema de nuestro tiempo, sino algo que viene repitiéndose y fomentándose a lo largo de las décadas. Es cierto que desde hace unos años a esta parte, la violencia contra las mujeres empezó a formar parte de la agenda de los medios de comunicación, del Estado y de otros organismos. Este tipo de casos, de a poco, está dejando de ser algo del ámbito privado (violencia doméstica o crímenes pasionales como se los llamaba hasta hace muy poco) y empieza a ser un tema de todos, un problema de nuestra sociedad y de nuestro país. No sé si ahora se matan más mujeres que antes, pero ahora nos enteramos y reaccionamos de una manera diferente ante este tipo de violencia.

-¿La escritura del libro surgió de una inquietud de entender que hay detrás de la violencia contra las mujeres?

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Author: Shawn C. Marsh ; Carly B. Dierkhising . ; Kelly B. Decker ; John Rosiak
Corporate Author: National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges
United States of America

Document URL: 

    PDF  

Publication Date: April 2015
  
Annotation: This guide assists judges and personnel of juvenile and family courts in deciding whether a trauma consultation is appropriate for their jurisdiction, and it outlines what courts can expect before, during, and after a trauma consultation.
Abstract: The rationale for having a trauma consultation for a juvenile and family court stems from prevalence data that show a high percentage of those who come before juvenile and family courts have been exposed to severe and chronic traumatic events. These events often lead to symptoms and behaviors typically linked to traumatic stress. Because juvenile and family courts work with children and families that are dealing with trauma-related issues, they are in a unique position to promote healing and prevent future trauma. In 2013 the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (NCJFCJ) developed a court trauma consultation protocol in response to an increase in requests for assistance. At the time, there was no known protocol for conducting this type of consultation and subsequent technical assistance. The current manual was not developed with the intent to make it a “how to” guide for courts in conducting their own internal trauma consultations. This guide is intended to help jurisdictions and juvenile courts decide whether a consultation with an experienced, objective external team is right for them. It also assists jurisdictions and courts in preparing for the consultation team and in using subsequent recommendations of the team in implementing and maintaining trauma-informed services. 30 references and 15 resources listings

 

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Por Mariana Carbajal

Cada tres horas, una niña de entre 10 y 14 años se convierte en madre en la Argentina. Al año, serán alrededor de 3000 las chicas que den a luz antes de cumplir los 15. La tasa más alta de madres-niñas se concentra en el noreste del país: Formosa encabeza el ranking con 6,1 nacimientos anuales por cada 1000 chicas. Sin embargo, en números absolutos las madres niñas son más numerosas en el conurbano: en 2012 allí hubo 429 nacimientos con madres menores de 15 años. Los datos surgen de un estudio que se presentará hoy en una actividad científica organizada por la Sociedad Argentina de Pediatría, y que realiza una radiografía de la maternidad temprana: quienes son esas madres, qué riesgos corren ellas y sus hijos, en qué se parecen o se diferencian de las madres de mayor edad.

La investigación advierte que las relaciones sexuales que dieron lugar al embarazo fueron, generalmente, con varones más grandes: en no pocos casos se trata de adultos, en contextos de abuso sexual. Cuatro de cada 100 niñas tendrán su segundo y hasta su tercer hijo antes de festejar el cumpleaños de 15. “Aunque las relaciones sexuales hayan sido consentidas se dieron sin protección anticonceptiva o contra las infecciones de transmisión sexual”, advirtió a Página/12 Edith Pantelides, investigadora del Cenep (Centro de Estudios de Población) y coautora del relevamiento.

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Different jurisdictions and immunities apply to civilian and military personnel, made more obscure by a lack of transparency and detail in the U.N.’s reporting of abuse cases. Photo: UN Photo/Pasqual Gorriz

UNITED NATIONS, May 13 2015 (IPS) - “We can really argue as much as we want but if we put ourselves in the skin of victims, we just have to do something to stop this.”

This was Graça Machel’s appeal at the launch of Code Blue, the campaign to end impunity for sexual violence by United Nations (U.N.) peacekeeping personnel Wednesday.

“Each country will act according to what it thinks is appropriate and more often than not rather than a full-fledged investigation you simply see a plane arriving and a bunch of people being put on a plane and disappearing." -- Lt. General Roméo Dallaire

Machel, a renowned human rights advocate, spoke of her own dismay when researching the landmark U.N. study ‘The Impact of Armed Conflict on Children’.

“We came across, eye to eye, women and girls who had been abused by U.N. peacekeeping personnel – it was shocking to us,” Machel said.

Peacekeeping is about more than military peace but also about bringing peace in people themselves, Machel said.

Her sentiments were shared by a panel of international leaders, including Lt. General Roméo Dallaire, Force Commander for the U.N. mission during the Rwandan genocide; Ambassador Anwarul Chowdhury, former Under-Secretary General; Theo Sowa, CEO of the African Women’s Development Fund; and Paula Donovan Co-director of AIDS-Free World, the organisation spearheading Code Blue.

The panel implored the United Nations and world leaders to act, and called for a truly independent Commission of Inquiry, with unobstructed access to U.N. records and correspondence, and full subpoena power.

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SEE ALSO:

NGOs Urge Commission of Inquiry to Probe Sexual Abuse in U.N. Peacekeeping

AND:

PRESS RELEASE: Experts launch 'Code Blue,' demand end to UN immunity for peacekeeper sex abuse

Contact: 
Coimbra Sirica: +1 301-943-3287, csirica@burness.com
Wanda Bautista: +1 301-280-5760, wbautista@burness.com
Gill Mathurin: + 1 646-924-1710, gm@aidsfreeworld.org

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NACIONES UNIDAS, 13 may 2015 (IPS) - El número creciente de casos de abusos sexuales cometidos por las misiones de paz de la ONU ocasionó el lanzamiento de una campaña de alto nivel para que cesen los ataques a mujeres y niños, así como el pedido de una comisión independiente que investigue la situación.

Los últimos “horribles” ataques sexuales se atribuyeron a las fuerzas de paz francesas presentes en República Centroafricana, aunque el portavoz de la ONU (Organización de las Naciones Unidas) Stephane Dujarric aseguró que “no estaban bajo el mando y control” del foro mundial.

"Pero la verdad es sorprendente y sencilla. Ningún mecanismo nuevo, ni métodos de operación nuevos, ni políticas nuevas podrán funcionar en la práctica para prevenir o castigar a los abusadores sexuales… debido a que la burocracia de la ONU responsable de implementar los cambios es completamente disfuncional": Paula Donovan.

“Esperamos que cualquier persona que participó en las actividades atroces que involucran a niños en República Centroafricana enfrente a la justicia y sea procesada”, dijo a los medios de comunicación.

Paula Donovan, codirectora de AIDS-Free World, la organización que ayudó a difundir un informe sobre la situación que se mantenía oculta, denunció a IPS que hubo “desde confusión e ineptitud en el terreno, hasta encubrimientos en los más altos niveles de la ONU en Nueva York”.

“Los Estados miembros deben someter a las fuerzas de mantenimiento de la paz de la ONU a una comisión rigurosa, totalmente independiente, de investigación con acceso completo a los documentos y el personal”, exigió.

Hasta que eso ocurra, las políticas o procedimientos nuevos que se adopten fracasarán, lo mismo que sucede con las actuales, advirtió Donovan.

En 2014 se registraron más de 50 casos de abuso sexual cometido por personal de la ONU, aunque el número real sería mucho mayor. La inmunidad diplomática permitiría que los culpables queden impunes y eviten las restricciones legales.

La propuesta de un convenio internacional que castigue a los acusados ​​de delitos sexuales en las operaciones de la ONU en el extranjero, presentada en 2008, nunca se concretó.

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Cameras strapped to police don’t just record bad behavior by officers or people confronted in the field — they often stop the rough stuff from even beginning.
 
As San Francisco moves toward equipping all of its officers with body cameras, police departments big and small, from Oakland on down to Menlo Park, are reporting huge drops in use-of-force incidents as well as citizen complaints since they began using the devices.
 
Since deploying wearable cameras in 2010, use-of-force incidents in the 400,000-population city of Oakland have plunged 72 percent, according to department records. With 700 body cameras, Oakland has the biggest inventory in the nation.
 
Across the bay in Menlo Park, population 33,000, use-of-force incidents fell 33 percent after body cameras were handed out to that city’s 49 officers in 2012. Campbell has seen its citizen complaints drop by half since starting camera use in 2010 — and similar numbers are reported in Brentwood, which has been using cameras since 2008, longer than anyone in the Bay Area.
  1. CONTINUES
  2. SEE ALSO:
  3. Use of Police Body Cameras in
  4. Cases of Violence Against Women and Children
  5.  

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Una adolescente que escapó de un taller textil clandestino denunció que había sido víctima de trata y explotación. La Justicia dispuso allanamientos en Flores, Mataderos y Villa Lugano y rescató a otras seis personas. Denunciaron 170 talleres más.

La Justicia realizó ocho allanamientos en la Ciudad de Buenos Aires y rescató a seis víctimas de trata para explotación laboral, tras la denuncia de una adolescente de 16 años que escapó de un taller textil ilegal. Las víctimas eran trasladadas desde Mendoza y Bolivia. No habían cobrado ningún salario, vivían hacinadas y sin medidas de seguridad e higiene. Por otro lado, la organización La Alameda confeccionó un mapa con 170 nuevos talleres clandestinos regenteados por redes de explotación laboral, que los vecinos de esos lugares detectaron en la última semana. Además se presentaron denuncias contra el gobierno porteño por el taller incendiado en el que murieron dos niños.

El titular de la Fiscalía Nacional Criminal y Correccional Federal Nº 10, Diego Iglesias, ordenó allanar cinco domicilios ubicados en Flores, Mataderos y Villa Lugano, y tres locales comerciales de Once y la avenida Avellaneda. Durante los procedimientos, fueron rescatadas seis personas y otras cinco fueron detenidas, tras lo cual fueron clausurados los lugares allanados. En los talleres había, además, 22 trabajadores, muchos en situación migratoria irregular.

La causa judicial se inició en octubre pasado, cuando una adolescente de 16 años, que había escapado de un taller ilegal, realizó la denuncia y contó que una mujer –ahora imputada– la trajo desde Bolivia mediante engaños, entre ellos, la promesa de trabajo bien remunerado. Tres días duró el viaje hasta la Ciudad de Buenos Aires, contó la joven, quien fue obligada a vivir en el taller donde trabajaba de lunes a sábado desde las 6 hasta las 22. Además era víctima de maltrato físico y psicológico, y padecía hostigamiento sexual.

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Mary Jane Veloso was spared from death at the last minute. She still faces execution.

Mary Jane is a migrant domestic worker just like me. Like me, Mary Jane was forced to become a migrant domestic worker because of poverty, because of a commitment to support her family, because she had no other choice. Like me she suffered abuse. Like me she almost died.

When working as a domestic worker in Dubai Mary Jane was attacked and hospitalized. After a month in hospital and a rape trial of the perpetrator she went home. But she couldn’t earn money at home to support her children and had no choice but to sell her few possessions and become indebted to an informal agent who professed to be her friend and migrate again. She was told she would be given work in Malaysia, like so many Indonesian domestic workers.  But the work didn’t eventuate. She was given new clothes and a new suitcase and told to go to Indonesia until other work would be sorted for her.

Like me, Mary Jane was in no position to question the agents that made her migration possible. Like me she was in debt. Like me she trusted people that promised to help. Like me she couldn’t speak the local language. Like me she needed to navigate a legal system that wasn’t in her language and that she didn’t understand.

But unlike me Mary Jane was a defendant. And unlike me Mary Jane had no support.

Mary Jane was charged with drug trafficking. But in fact it was Mary Jane who was trafficked. Like hundreds of thousands of women around the world Mary Jane was controlled and made to travel as human cargo for the profit of others.

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Title: 

 

From Warriors to Guardians: Recommitting American Police Culture to Democratic Ideals

Author: Sue Rahr ; Stephen K. Rice
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice (NIJ)
 
Document URL: FULL PDF ONLINE HERE  
Publication Date: April 2015
Annotation: 

One in a series of papers that will be published from the Executive Session on Policing and Public Safety, this paper describes a training model for police that will assist in transforming the law enforcement culture from a “warrior” orientation to that of “guardian” of democratic ideals.

 

Abstract: 

Much of the contemporary culture of policing has promoted law enforcement officers as “warriors” facing a cauldron of crime that must be suppressed by the tactics and weapons of force and control that parallel those of military “warriors” facing a hostile enemy. This warrior/militaristic culture is also reflected in the traditional hierarchical police organization that parallels the ranking and authoritative structure of the military.

This paper advocates the transformation of the police culture into the posture and functions of a “guardian,” which involves implementing the concepts of “procedural justice.” In acting as a “guardian,” police officers treat each individual fairly and consistently. Fairness relates to the protection of human rights, which includes equal treatment, non-discrimination, and protection of human rights and the worth of each individual.

As Tyler and colleagues explain, “If legal authorities exercise their authority fairly, they build legitimacy and increase both willing deference to rules and the decisions of the police and the courts and the motivation to help with the task of maintaining social order in the community.” The transformation from the “warrior” mentality to the “guardian” mentality in the police culture is being facilitated at the Washington State Criminal Justice Training Commission. It has established a training model that emphasizes “justice-based policing,” “crisis intervention,” “tactical social interaction,” and “”the respect effect.” A 5-year longitudinal study of the effectiveness of this training model is being conducted.

 

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End Family Detention

Since last summer, hundreds of mothers and children have been locked up in immigrant detention facilities after they came seeking safety in the U.S. Most of these women and children are asylum seekers fleeing extreme violence in their home countries, and instead of finding the protection they need, they're being incarcerated. 
 
Detaining mothers and children punishes families fleeing for their lives, needlessly puts them in harm's way and violates their human rights. 
 
Last year President Obama reversed course after terminating large-scale family detention in 2009 amidst a firestorm of human rights abuses. Today women and children, including babies and toddlers, are being locked up in two new privately run facilities in Texas, and in an expanded facility in Berks County, Pennsylvania.
 
Stand up for the rights of women and children. Sign the petition, and tell Director Saldaña of Immigration and Customs Enforcement to end family detention now!
 
ORGANIZER
Detention Watch Network
@DetentionWatch
The Detention Watch Network works through the collective strength and diversity of its members to expose and challenge the injustices of the U.S. immigration detention and deportation system and advocate for profound change that promotes the rights and dignity of all persons.
 
 

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La violencia contra la mujer es una forma de discriminación y una
violación de los derechos humanos. Causa sufrimientos indecibles, cercena
vidas y deja a incontables mujeres viviendo con dolor y temor en todos los
países del mundo. Causa perjuicio a las familias durante generaciones,
empobrece a las comunidades y refuerza otras formas de violencia en las
sociedades. La violencia contra la mujer les impide alcanzar su plena realización
personal, restringe el crecimiento económico y obstaculiza el
desarrollo. La generalización y el alcance de la violencia contra la mujer
ponen de manifiesto el grado y la persistencia de la discriminación con que
siguen tropezando las mujeres. Por consiguiente, sólo se puede eliminar
tratando de eliminar la discriminación, promoviendo la igualdad y el
empoderamiento de la mujer y velando por el pleno ejercicio de los derechos
humanos de la mujer.
Toda la humanidad saldría beneficiada si se pusiera fin a este tipo
de violencia, ya que se han logrado grandes progresos en la creación del
marco internacional para lograrlo. Sin embargo, han surgido nuevas formas
de violencia y, en algunos países, se ha producido un retroceso en los
avances hacia la igualdad y la ausencia de violencia que había logrado ya
la mujer o están en una situación precaria. El predominio constante de la
violencia contra la mujer es una demostración de que los Estados todavía
no han encarado el problema del compromiso político, la visibilidad y los
recursos necesarios.

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Yesterday May 7 the Women’s Court on war crimes against women during the war in the 1990ies formally started in Sarajevo, Bosnia.
Women have come together from all the corners of the former-Yugoslavia to participate in the Women’s Court in Sarajevo, to demand justice for the crimes committed against them during the wars and the enduring inequalities and suffering that followed. 

The impressive composition of the organisational committee speaks for the unity and solidarity of women across the national divides that came with the partition of the former Yugoslavia : from Bosnia & Herzegovina: Mothers of the Enclaves of Srebrenica and Zepa, ; Women’s Forum (www.forumzena.org), Foundation CURE (www.fondacijacure.org); from Croatia: Centre for Women’s Studies (www.zenstud.hr), Centre for Women War Victims - ROSA (www.czzzr.hr); from Kosovo: Kosovo Women’s Network (www.womensnetwork.org); from Macedonia: National Council for Gender Equality (www.sozm.org.mk); from Montenegro: Anima (www.animakotor.org); from Slovenia: Women’s Lobby Slovenia (www.zls.si); from Serbia: Women’s Studies (www.zenskestudie.edu.rs), Women in Black (www.zeneucrnom.org)

This, in and by itself, is a huge achievement, at a time when Europe is plagued with the rise of nationalisms, of extreme right forces that divide peoples along ethnic and religious lines ; at a time when attempts are made to homogenize nations and to exclude minorities and diversity ; at a time when even citizens of one country are further separated by the construction of antagonistic ‘communities’. 

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by Vanessa Pérez

In the early morning hours of July 5, 1953, two New York City police officers spotted a figure on the ground near the corner of Fifth Avenue and 106th Street in East Harlem. As they approached, they saw the body of a woman with bronze-colored skin. Once a towering woman at five feet, ten inches, she now lay in the street, unconscious. They rushed her to Harlem Hospital, where she died shortly thereafter. The woman carried no handbag and had no identification on her. No one came to the morgue to claim her body. No missing person’s case fit her description. She was buried in the city’s Potter’s Field. One month later, the woman was identified as award-winning Puerto Rican poet Julia de Burgos. Her family and friends exhumed and repatriated her body.

When I began writing about Julia de Burgos, I hesitated to mention her notorious death, seeking to move away from the narratives of victimhood that have shrouded her life for more than half a century. I wanted to focus on her poetry, her activism for women’s rights, social justice and the independence of Puerto Rico, and her legacy. Most Puerto Ricans already know her story, and many both on the island and in New York have been captivated by her life. However, I soon realized the importance of recounting even the most difficult details as I introduced her to new audiences. Her migration experience and her death on the streets of New York capture the imaginations of readers everywhere. Becoming Julia de Burgos builds on recent approaches to her work that focus on movement, flow, and migration. This book proposes a new way of reading Burgos’s work, life, and legacy, focusing on the escape routes she created in her poetry to write herself out of the rigid confines of gender and cultural nationalism.

ESSAY CONTINUES

 

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One in three teenagers report being sexually harassed at work, according to a recent survey.

A study polled 518 teens in 2008 and 2009 and found that one-third said they had experienced a type of sexual harassment. But even that figure likely masks the real number, Laura Gunderson reports at The Oregonian, as many probably don’t report the abuse. Nationally, as few as 5 percent of adults will file a complaint, and researchers say younger workers are even less likely to do so. As Gunderson writes, they often “don’t realize the graphic comments and unwanted touching they may have tolerated in school constitutes sexual harassment at work,” and of those who realize something is wrong, “many are too scared, embarrassed, or in need of a paycheck to speak up.”

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  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press; 1 edition (May 13, 2015)
  •  
  • "It's all too easy for Americans to imagine that protest targeting abortion workers has died down in recent years. David Cohen and Krysten Connon's Living in the Crosshairs offers a bracing corrective to that misimpression, with this deep dive into the daily lives of abortion providers -- from bulletproof vests to online stalking. Living in the Crosshairs affords us a look at the legal framework that protects providers from such targeted harassment and imagines the reforms needed to do so more effectively. For anyone wondering why reproductive freedom is on the decline in America, this book moves the conversation from vague abstraction to the vitally concrete." -Dahlia Lithwick, Slate.com

"In this compelling and important book, Cohen and Connon show beyond a doubt that the harassment of abortion providers is ongoing, pervasive, serious -- and often unpunished. It's time to call it by its rightful name: terrorism." -Katha Pollitt, author of Pro: Reclaiming Abortion Rights

"Cohen and Connon have written a terrific, though chilling book describing how abortion providers are harassed and terrorized. Relying on in-depth interviews, they offer an unprecedented description of what those who provide reproductive health services must endure. Their proposals for legal reform should be an agenda for action and legislatures across the country." -Erwin Chemerinsky, founding Dean and Distinguished Professor of Law, and Raymond Pryke Professor of First Amendment Law, the University of California, Irvine School of Law

"Living in the Crosshairs is an extremely important addition to the literature on abortion in the United States. For those readers unfamiliar with the day-to-day realities of abortion provision, this book will be a true eye-opener, as the authors detail the unacceptable, often harrowing, situations that abortion providers have long endured at the hands of their opponents, and continue to do so to this day. Most valuably, the book outlines the necessary legal and social reforms to address this violence and terrorism. A must-read for those who care about the future of abortion availability in this country." -Carole Joffe, Professor, Bixby Center for Global Reproductive Health, University of California, San Francisco; author, Dispatches from the Abortion Wars: The Costs of Fanaticism to Doctors, Patients, and the Rest of Us

"Living in the Crosshairs gives statistics a human face often missing in media coverage as it details the real, day-to-day experiences of abortion providers in this country. In addition to bringing to light stories of harassment, Crosshairs also calls for reforms in the legal system, making it an absolute must-read for anyone in media and/or reproductive rights advocacy." -RH Reality Check

"...a gripping, well-researched and maddening book, and while it is not the first or only text to highlight the abuse foisted on providers, it offers a clear list of common-sense recommendations for improving staff and patient safety." -Truthout

About the Authors

David S. Cohen is a law professor at Drexel University Thomas R. Kline School of Law, where he teaches constitutional law and gender and the law. Prior to teaching, Cohen was a staff attorney at the Women's Law Project in Philadelphia and litigated cases involving abortion clinic safety, reproductive rights, Title IX, and LGBT family law.

Krysten Connon is a 2012 graduate of the Drexel University School of Law. Following law school, Connon worked as a federal judicial law clerk. She is currently an attorney in private practice in Philadelphia.

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