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Iraq Trains Female Cops; HIV Top Threat to WomenBy Kimberly St. Louis
Saturday, November 14, 2009
In Iraq, 50 women became the first female graduates Nov. 9 of the country's police officer training academy, The New York Times reported.
"Everyone says men are able to do everything, but that's not true," First Lieutenant Farah Hameed, 24, said in the article. "In investigations, especially with women, women use their compassion with victims to get them to answer questions clearly."
Women trained and studied separately from their 1,050 male classmates, but were subject to the same standards, the article reported. However, while men slept at the academy, there was no housing for women. The women had to commute, some leaving their homes as early as 4 a.m. and returning after dark.
The women were encouraged by their families to join the academy, but some of the graduates said they received threats from men in their communities.
More News to Cheer This Week:To combat the passage of the restrictive, anti-choice Stupak amendment, Diana DeGette, co-chair of the Congressional Pro-Choice Caucus, collected 40 signatures of pro-choice House Democrats. They pledged they would oppose final passage of the act if the anti-choice amendment is not removed, according to a Nov. 8 press release by the Feminist Majority. Rep. Raul Grijalva, D-Ariz., also announced Nov. 10 that he will fight the Stupak amendment, TPM LiveWire reported. "No state should be able to restrict the health care choices available to its own people," he said in the article.
Actress Emma Thompson joined Mayor Bloomberg near New York City's Washington Square Park to open an art installation on Nov.10 that depicts one woman's story of sexual abuse and trafficking. The exhibit runs through Nov. 15 in New York City and will then premiere in Madrid.
Sharmini Boyle was unanimously elected founder president of the South Asian Women in Media Region Executive Body at their first regional conference in Lahore, Pakistan, Daily News reported Nov. 9. The organization is the first South Asian all-female media association.
Women's Health Research at Yale University will launch a collaborative study to identify gender differences among returning soldiers, according to a Nov. 9 press release by Media-Newswire.com. Women represent 220,000 of the two million Americans who fought in Afghanistan and Iraq since 2001, the largest number of women exposed to combat to date.
Australian scientists have developed a surgical technique that may enable women with breast cancer to re-grow their breasts after a mastectomy, Reuters reported Nov. 11. Human trials are expected to start within three to six months.
A refuge to protect women who are at risk of forced marriage and "honor-based violence" opened in East London, BBC News reported Nov. 10. The Saranaya Refuge is one of only two of its kind in the United Kingdom. The Association of Chief Police Officers estimates 17,000 British women are subject to "honor-based violence," including murder, each year and an estimated 3,000 women are forced into marriage each year.
HIV is the leading cause of death globally among women between the ages of 15 and 44, according to a report by the World Health Organization, the Associated Press reported Nov. 9.
The report, "Women and Health: Today's Evidence Tomorrow's Agenda," focuses on the health needs and circumstances of women worldwide. It found that the highest death rates of women in their reproductive years from HIV/AIDS occurred in low-income (22.3 percent) and middle-income countries (15.4 percent). Unsafe sex was the biggest risk factor.
More News to Jeer This Week:Children in the Britain who reported sexual abuse by women rose 132 percent since 2004-2005, revealed the hotline Childline, BBC News reported Nov. 9. Their report showed that out of the 16,094 children who called the helpline, 2,142 spoke of abuse by a woman. Nearly two-thirds (1,311 cases) of the female sex abuse claims involved the child's mother. Men still account for the majority of child abuse claims though, but experts say female sex abuse was under-reported.
Women may live six to eight years longer than men, but they receive poorer quality care throughout their lives, the World Health Organization said Nov. 9, Reuters reported. The largest health shortcomings are related to mental health problems and sexual violence, which women suffer more than men.
Mark Lowe, a wealthy British financer, is accused of bringing prostitutes to business meetings, Telegraph.co.uk reported Nov. 10. A former female employee who plans to take legal action against Lowe and his investment firm for alleged sex discrimination is bringing the charge.
The girlfriend of James Kazini, Uganda's former army chief, was arrested in connection to his death, BBC News reported Nov. 10. An army spokesman said Kazini had been a victim of domestic violence.
Darfur rape victims have lost vital medical and psychological support after 10 sexual violence aid agencies were expelled, Reuters reported Nov. 11. "Women are now feeling a lot less safe in reporting rapes and there's been a resurgence of the bad old days when women victims are treated like criminals if they report it," an official was quoted as saying.
Almost 50 percent of women who have surgery for breast cancer still have pain two to three years later, according to a Denmark study, guardian.co.uk reported Nov. 11. Women over 40 were most affected, 64 in 100 said they still had pain.
U.S. female hotel housekeepers are 50 percent more likely to be injured on the job than men, a study of 50 hotels found, The New York Times Housekeepers have a 7.9 percent injury rate each year. Hispanic women had the highest injury rate, 10.6 percent a year.
U.S. women diagnosed with certain serious illnesses are seven times more likely to become separated or divorced than men with similar health problems, according to a study reported in The New York Times Nov. 12. The study looked at 515 patients who were diagnosed with brain tumors or multiple sclerosis. It showed that among women who became ill, about 21 percent experienced the end of a marriage, compared to only 3 percent of men.
More women watch television than men, but there are still few--or no--female writers on late-night television shows such as "The Jay Leno Show," "The Daily Show," and "Late Show with David Letterman," The New York Times Nov. 11. This issue was brought to light following the recent David Letterman scandal.
Women represent only 18 percent of the top leadership roles in 10 sectors--including business and nonprofit--of the U.S. work force, according to a report by the White House Project, ABC News.com reported Nov. 13. As many as 90 percent of women and men are ready to see women in charge, according to the report.
A Wisconsin mother was sentenced to 30 days in jail Nov. 12 for her daughter's repeated refusal to comply with court ordered visitation with her father, NowPublic reported Nov. 12.
Noted:Women treated for breast cancer have about a 20 percent risk of relapse if they have "dense breasts"--those with less fatty tissue--according to Canadian researchers, BBC News reported Nov. 9. Researchers looked at the medical records of 335 women, with an average age of 63.5. Breast density was higher in younger women in the study.
A man suspected in the ax murders of four elderly women was arrested by police in Macedonia Nov. 8, after he allegedly tried to kill three more women, The Associated Press reported Nov. 9.
A female Brazilian student was readmitted to her university in Sao Paulo Nov. 9, after she was escorted off-campus and expelled Oct. 22 for wearing a short dress, BBC News reported Nov. 10. The university had said she was expelled for disrupting classes through "a flagrant lack of respect for ethical principles, academic dignity and morality." The student said she had never been warned about her dress.
Women who are obese at age 18 double their risk of developing multiple sclerosis--a disorder that affects nerve functioning--later in life, compared to slimmer women, Harvard researchers found, ABC News.com reported Nov. 10. A large body silhouette at age 20 increased the risk of MS by 96 percent.
Elizabeth Lambert's violent play during a soccer match in Colorado Springs, Colo., has spurred a national debate about sportsmanship, gender roles, double standards and the sexualized portrayal of female athletes, The New York Times reported Nov. 10. The match was between the University of New Mexico and Brigham Young University
U.K. surgeries to improve the appearance of female genitals for both psychological and physical reasons numbered 1,118 last year, an increase of 70 percent over the previous year, BBC News reported Nov. 11, citing a British report
A murdered pregnant Egyptian woman's killer was sentenced to life in prison without eligibility for early release, BBC News reported Nov. 11. Marwa Sherbini was stabbed at least 16 times by Alexander Wiens in July during a hearing in a German courtroom. Thousands attended Sherbini's funeral in Egypt.
The lawyer of the man trying to extort $2 million from talk show host David Letterman contended Nov. 10 that his client was trying to sell a story to Letterman, not extort him, The New York Times reported Nov. 11. A motion was filed Nov. 10 to drop the extortion charge in State Supreme Court in Manhattan.
A mother's plea to be buried with her son in a Massachusetts military cemetery was denied, ABC News.com reported Nov. 12. Currently only spouses and children can be buried in the same plot as a fallen soldier. An act that would allow biological or adoptive parents to this burial right is awaiting Senate approval.
Kimberly St. Louis is an editorial intern at Women's eNews through the New York Arts Program. She is a senior at Ohio Wesleyan University studying journalism and politics and government.