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HomeFeminismWeekend Studying on Ladies's Illustration: Sexual Harassment Is Pervasive in State Politics;...

Weekend Studying on Ladies’s Illustration: Sexual Harassment Is Pervasive in State Politics; Remembering Sandra Day O’Connor

Weekend Studying on Ladies’s Illustration is a compilation of tales about ladies’s illustration in politics, on boards, in sports activities and leisure, in judicial workplaces and within the personal sector within the U.S. and world wide—with just a little gardening and goodwill blended in for refreshment!

It’s onerous to consider December is right here. I hope you’re staying heat and feeling a little bit of pleasure and hopeful anticipation this vacation season.

This week, I used to be studying by means of Forbes’ twentieth annual listing of the World’s 100 Most Highly effective Ladies and observed the shortage of girls in high political roles, with Italy Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni being the only girl main a G20 economic system. Ten years in the past, 5 ladies had been heading nations among the many high 25 world economies.

At RepresentWomen, we all know that present progress in the direction of gender stability is sluggish and uneven—however that programs options can speed up progress.

On this week’s Weekend Studying, let’s study new information and information tales on ladies’s illustration and the options for the issues they spotlight.

New Report Sheds Mild on Latina Underrepresentation in Politics

Hispanas Organized for Political Equality (HOPE) launched a brand new report titled ”Latina Illustration in California Authorities,” detailing that though Latinas characterize 20 % of California’s inhabitants, their illustration in elected workplace lags far behind that. The report covers Latina illustration in any respect ranges of presidency and finds that their native illustration is strongest: 

Latinas maintain no statewide seats and have but to see a consultant maintain constitutional workplace in California. 

Latinas maintain simply 4 of 52 congressional seats — all in Southern California and one in every of whom has introduced her retirement on the conclusion of the present time period. 

There may be motive for optimism. Vital positive aspects have been made by ladies and Latinas, particularly on the metropolis council and college board ranges, driving elevated illustration on these our bodies and constructing a powerful bench of officers who could run for greater workplace sooner or later.

Our report additionally discovered vital energy in Los Angeles, the place the most important variety of Latinos are registered in California, and the place Latinas maintain relative parity between their inhabitants and illustration in any respect ranges of presidency besides metropolis council.

We now have additionally discovered rising Latina energy within the Central Valley and on the Central Coast, the place once more Latinos and Latinas maintain sturdy voter registration numbers. 

‘Rethinking Ladies’s Political Energy’: The Want for Programs Reforms

Our pals over on the Heart for American Ladies in Politics, led by the terrific Debbie Walsh, launched a well timed report authored by Kelly Dittmar, “Rethinking Ladies’s Political Energy.” This report is stuffed with quotes from interviews with elected officers and different leaders (as pictured above), and reiterates the necessity for programs change and improved coordination to take away obstacles to ladies’s entry into politics.

We’re obsessed with constructing a extra cohesive motion for gender-balanced democracy by means of our latest initiative, the Ladies’s Energy Collaborative, to assist treatment the obstacles outlined within the report. 

Rethinking ladies’s political energy requires rethinking help infrastructures for girls in politics, increasing past candidate coaching and focused marketing campaign giving to think about different websites for and types of help that can foster sustainable political engagement for a full variety of girls…

Whereas helps particularly for political ladies exist of their state, they’re restricted in scope, capability, and attain. A number of interview topics lamented the shortage of coordination amongst organizations and packages, suggesting there’s potential for extra coalition-building and partnerships – much like Georgia’s recruitment coalition – to help a variety of girls in politics…

Whether or not as a result of restricted capability, concentrate on self-sustainability, or different components, current helps for girls in politics usually operate inside silos as a substitute of in coordination with different gender-focused or non-gendered efforts to extend political engagement and energy throughout websites and ranges.

Report on Sexual Harassment in State Authorities Reveals Pervasiveness of the Difficulty 

A brand new report launched by the Nationwide Ladies’s Protection League titled “Abuse of Energy: Uncovering a Decade of Sexual Harassment in State Authorities” reveals that sexual harassment by sitting state lawmakers during the last decade is pervasive and ongoing: Not less than 130 statehouse lawmakers had been accused of sexual harassment by 359 people in 45 states since 2013–with precise numbers probably thrice as a lot as a result of underreporting by survivors and legislatures. The report makes clear that sexual harassment by state lawmakers isn’t a single-party difficulty or an anomaly–it’s a systemic and underregulated abuse of energy in each statehouse throughout the nation.

Right here’s what to know concerning the new report’s findings:

  • Each events are accountable: Sexual harassment isn’t unique to 1 celebration, although each events try and leverage it as a partisan difficulty. Members of each political events commit sexual harassment at an almost equal degree.
  • Little accountability or dependable recourse: Practically 60 % of lawmakers try to stay in workplace instantly after an accusation of sexual harassment, and in 55 % of the incidents recognized, no official motion was taken towards the accused elected official.
  • An issue in all 50 states: The report recognized particular lawmakers accused of sexual harassment in 45 states and stakeholders within the remaining 5 states who spoke to the issue of sexual harassment.

Sexual harassment is an issue that continues to place lots of of individuals’s security, professions, and well-being in jeopardy. In a cultural second of reconciling the facility dynamics in workplaces throughout the nation, and regardless of an uptick in public stories and media protection of unchecked harassment by lawmakers in recent times, little analysis has been completed to determine the magnitude and scope of sexual harassment in political and authorities workplaces.

Are Ladies’s Challenges in Mexico Fixable with a Lady President?  

Xóchitl Gálvez on Oct. 8, 2023 in Mexico Metropolis, Mexico. (Carlos Santiago / Eyepix Group / Future Publishing by way of Getty Photographs)

In an article printed by Refinery29, Bárbara González writes about Mexico’s upcoming election. Among the many candidates are two ladies, Claudia Sheinbaum and Xóchitl Gálvez.

Though there are lots of types of discrimination that ladies expertise within the political, financial, and social spheres, you’d anticipate that the prospect of a feminine president would convey Mexican ladies hope for a greater future; nonetheless, each of the candidates aren’t precisely pro-woman.

This text brings up an necessary query on the minds of many of us working to advance ladies’s illustration and construct ladies’s political energy: how can we guarantee getting extra ladies within the seats interprets to substantive illustration of the problems that ladies care about?

It’s newsworthy for a rustic with a popularity for rampant machismo to probably have a girl main on the highest ranges of presidency, however feminists within the nation query if it is going to truly be efficient for his or her wrestle. Ladies in Mexico are nonetheless being discriminated towards, attacked, and killed. Mexican ladies are paid a lot lower than males. For each 100 pesos a Mexican man earns in a single month, a Mexican girl makes 65. The hole grows when ladies have youngsters and spend extra time doing unpaid labor at dwelling. Greater than 70% of Mexican ladies over the age of 15 have skilled at the very least one incident of psychological, financial, bodily, or sexual violence…. It ought to thus come as no shock that Mexican feminists are skeptical, if not outright pessimistic, when introduced with the potential of a presidenta… 

Fátima Gamboa, director of EQUIS Justicia para las Mujeres, challenges the idea {that a} presidenta would be the magic bullet that can resolve Mexican ladies’s issues. Whereas she acknowledges that “it’s all the time necessary and that an increasing number of positions of energy and political illustration are occupied by ladies,” she additionally tells Somos that “a feminine president doesn’t robotically translate into bettering the state of affairs of insecurity, poverty, inequality, and violence.” Furthermore, Gamboa says that the present pattern of militarization, unlikely to be reversed by both of the ladies candidates, doesn’t bode properly for the top of violence towards Mexican ladies…

The upcoming Mexican presidential election will undoubtedly be historic. These two candidacies are a welcome advance by way of descriptive illustration, however there’s nonetheless a lot work to be completed to deal with the deep-rooted points that proceed to have an effect on Mexican ladies. 

If you’re enthusiastic about studying extra about ladies’s political illustration in Mexico, try RepresentWomen’s report, “Reaching Gender Parity: Programs Methods Across the World.”

Sarah Blahovec Discusses the Pressing Have to Create Area for Disabled Leaders in Politics  

Giant set of disabled individuals within the office with a blind man and canine, woman with prosthetics and wheel chair customers, flat cartoon coloured vector illustration

Sunday, Dec. 3, was the Worldwide Day of Disabled Individuals. In honor of this event, our shut ally Sarah Blahovec wrote an article for Gender on the Poll, which reiterates the pressing want for creating house for disabled leaders inside the political sphere. 

As our analysis has demonstrated, disabled people, significantly disabled ladies, face steep obstacles to political illustration and are sometimes hindered by the principles and construction of our political system. To mitigate this longstanding downside, Sarah Blahovec helped co-found Incapacity Victory, the first-ever group devoted to empowering disabled people to run for workplace.

As defined within the article, Incapacity Victory creates a protected, accessible house for disabled people to assist each other fight ableism, study to advocate for his or her wants, and navigate the distinctive challenges they face in campaigning and operating for workplace.

 As disabled individuals, we all know that society is stuffed with systemic entry obstacles. These obstacles are current in our democratic processes, from voting to operating for workplace. We additionally know that disabled individuals are underrepresented in elected workplace, particularly disabled ladies. Which means that our voices are sometimes lacking as policymakers who can impact change and make our society extra accessible and inclusive.

These obstacles prolong to the marketing campaign path. Over the previous a number of years, we’ve heard from disabled candidates, marketing campaign workers, and volunteers concerning the challenges they’ve encountered operating for workplace and dealing on campaigns. Not solely that, we’ve heard concerning the difficulties disabled candidates have confronted in getting equal entry to the knowledge they should run for workplace, from struggling to get lodging to take part in marketing campaign coaching packages to not discovering solutions to their questions on operating for workplace as a disabled candidate……

Accessibility is a journey, not a vacation spot. You can begin by making easy adjustments, equivalent to including different textual content to pictures you share on social media, importing movies with closed captioning, and including a solution to request lodging in your occasion registration pages. These small adjustments could make a serious impression, and also you’ll quickly understand that when you begin training accessibility, it turns into a behavior. So, make entry a apply, and collectively, we will make the political enviornment extra accessible and inclusive to hundreds of thousands of disabled leaders.

Relaxation in Energy: Sandra Day O’Connor, First Lady on U.S. Supreme Court docket

Sandra Day O’Connor in her workplaces on the U.S. Supreme Court docket on January 23, 2007. (Charles Ommanney / Getty Photographs)

The New York Occasions featured a touching tribute to former Supreme Court docket Justice Sandra Day O’Connor written by Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter Linda Greenhouse

President Ronald Reagan named O’Connor to the Supreme Court docket in 1981, making her the primary girl in U.S. historical past to serve on the Court docket. The trailblazer broke a consequential glass ceiling in American authorities and paved the trail ahead for future feminine Supreme Court docket Justices Ruth Bader Ginsberg, Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Kagan, Amy Coney Barrett, and Ketanji Brown Jackson–inspiring ladies who’ve exemplified service and management!

RepresentWomen’s ‘Ladies on the Supreme Court docket’ highlights all the ladies who’ve served on the Supreme Court docket.

Justice O’Connor’s recollection of an assault of nerves could have been charming to her viewers of Supreme Court docket bar members and Washington insiders however scarcely believable to them: It was merely onerous to think about a nervous Sandra Day O’Connor. Athletic (she loved golf, tennis, snowboarding, and driving), with a powerful grip and a piercing gaze that would flip into an intimidating stare, the general public Justice O’Connor was the image of self-confidence.

On the bench throughout an argument session, she usually requested the primary query, and it was often one to strike concern into the center of even an skilled Supreme Court docket advocate: Is your case correctly on this court docket? Why shouldn’t we dismiss it as moot? What provides your consumer standing?…

The path to success in arguing a case earlier than Justice O’Connor lay not in invoking authorized doctrine or bright-line guidelines however in marshaling the info to show a call’s potential impression. Justice Anthony M. Kennedy described her with admiration as a pragmatist, which he outlined as “listening to real-world penalties.” Her jurisprudence, Justice Kennedy wrote in a tribute printed after her retirement, was “grounded in actual expertise.”

The outcomes from final week’s ranked-choice voting ballot are in! Readers weighed in on who they thought was essentially the most impactful girl in U.S. politics, and nearly all of voters named Shirley Chisholm!

Persevering with with the theme of options to extend ladies’s illustration: Which do you assume is essentially the most impactful system reform to take away obstacles to gender-balanced illustration? Tell us with this ballot!

P.S. Our Ranked-Alternative Voting and Illustration Toolkit is now dwell! With this one-stop store, you’ll have on the spot entry to our newest and most impactful sources on RCV and its optimistic affect on ladies’s illustration in authorities.

The perfect half? You gained’t want to fret about lacking out on updates—our toolkit robotically refreshes, protecting you knowledgeable with essentially the most present data. Bookmark the toolkit and empower your self to talk confidently about RCV’s advantages for girls’s political energy. 

Up subsequent:

U.S. democracy is at a harmful inflection level—from the demise of abortion rights, to a scarcity of pay fairness and parental go away, to skyrocketing maternal mortality, and assaults on trans well being. Left unchecked, these crises will result in wider gaps in political participation and illustration. For 50 years, Ms. has been forging feminist journalism—reporting, rebelling and truth-telling from the front-lines, championing the Equal Rights Modification, and centering the tales of these most impacted. With all that’s at stake for equality, we’re redoubling our dedication for the following 50 years. In flip, we want your assist, Assist Ms. at this time with a donation—any quantity that’s significant to you. For as little as $5 every month, you’ll obtain the print journal together with our e-newsletters, motion alerts, and invites to Ms. Studios occasions and podcasts. We’re grateful to your loyalty and ferocity.

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