This Saturday I trudged through the snow to attend the 35th Scholar and Feminist Conference put on by the Barnard Center for Research on Women. Quite appropriately, considering the recent weather, we were discussing feminism and climate change. Commenting on the nearly 36 inches of snow dumped on New York City, Janet Jakobsen, director of BCRW, asked in her welcoming remarks, “Is this a once in a century event or a sign of global climate change?”
According to Obama’s FY2011 Budget proposal released earlier this month, key investments for greater economic security and job creation are education, clean energy, infrastructure and innovation. An article in the Christian Science Monitor this week picks up on that last investment. Says the article,
According to national studies, women hold more than half of all professional occupations in the U.S. but fewer than 24 percent of all computing-related occupations, representing a huge pool of untapped talent. The numbers are not moving in favor of increasing women’s participation in technology; in 2008 women earned only 18 percent of all computer science degrees. Back in 1985, women earned 37 percent of CS degrees, nearly double today’s share.
Today we learned about this newly launched national initiative that "seeks to educate and build the self-esteem of middle school girls to increase their knowledge of the political process and encourage future political involvement." It’s called Girls Rock the House:
Over a week has passed since the earthquake in Haiti shook the world. Our hearts go out to the people of Haiti and those who have gone to help in relief efforts. We learn with sadness about the many lives lost, including key players in the Haitian women's movement. Experts are uniting behind the idea that the most effective way to help presently is to donate money.
Many members of the National Council for Research on Women network are involved in various humanitarian efforts in Haiti. Of particular concern is the gender dimension and ensuring that women and children's specific needs are not overlooked or undervalued.
Below is news about some efforts under way in sending both relief and funds to the people of Haiti. We are concerned with efforts to address the present dire situation, but also with those directed toward rebuilding the country's infrastructure and institutions. I hope you find this useful.
As reports filter in from Haiti in the aftermath of Wednesday's catastrophic earthquake, it is difficult to process the sheer immensity of this tragedy. My thoughts go to the tens of thousands of grieving and displaced who are struggling with unimaginable loss. I am also thinking about the hundreds, maybe thousands of colleagues, advocates and humanitarian workers who have sacrificed their lives while trying to rebuild a nation ravaged by hurricane, poverty and continuing mismanagement. The UN mission in Port au Prince is still missing more than 100 staff members and countless schools, clinics and businesses have been destroyed.
I won't go into the long and turbulent history of Haiti's past: revolt against slavery, independence, colonialism, dictatorship, fragile democracy and the US's troubling role in this tested nation's myriad challenges.
The Christian Science Monitor featured several articles this week on the veil and the Muslim Women's Movement. They're well worth the read! From "Behind the veil: Why Islam's most visible symbol is spreading:"