Gender Equity


Monday, October 25, 2010
When teens get pregnant, most drop out of school. When they drop out of school, they likely face a life of economic insecurity. And the role that discrimination plays in their decisions to drop out raises serious civil rights concerns. Read more
Friday, October 8, 2010
The New York Times recently reported that sex offense rates on the campuses and surrounding areas of 12 colleges and universities are 83 percent higher than the overall national average. As the Women’s Rights Project of the ACLU explained, “This statistic . . . highlights the importance of a school’s response to rape.” Fortunately, federal law has acknowledged the importance of a school’s response to sexual assault by requiring that schools respond to victims’ needs and take action to protect students. Read more
Monday, September 27, 2010
A recent report by the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) indicates that the Clallam County Jail in Port Angeles had the third highest rate of sexual assaults against inmates amongst all jails surveyed throughout the U.S. Clallam County disputes the report, and has asked the FBI to investigate; BJS has countered its objections. This recent controversy casts a light on an important national issue that until recently, aside from the occasional crude joke, has been shrouded in silence. Sexual assault is a serious, pervasive problem in America's prisons, jails, and juvenile detention facilities, including in Washington.
Friday, September 17, 2010
I watched the Storm’s championship-clinching game last night with my 11-year-old daughter.  To her it was an exciting game, to me it also was a political event.  I’ve been a Title IX advocate for 25 years, and I still can’t contain my sense of accomplishment when I see prominent coverage of women’s sports. (And I still sometimes get choked up when I see a team of girls swarm a soccer field or a basketball court). Read more
Friday, August 6, 2010
A Washington State woman was featured in a recent newspaper article that triggered government investigations into pregnancy discrimination in mortgage lending. Federal law prohibits mortgage lenders from discriminating against borrowers based on pregnancy, as long as the borrowers can demonstrate that they intend to return to work and will be able to continue meeting the income requirements for the loan. And, although lenders may ask about borrowers’ incomes to determine loan eligibility, they may not use pregnancy or maternity leave as grounds to deny mortgages. Read more
Thursday, July 29, 2010
Under federal Title IX and state law, girls and boys in Washington state are supposed to have equal opportunities to participate in high school sports All too often, however, boys’ opportunities far exceed girls’ because schools offer more boys sports, more squads within a sport, or bigger team rosters. Read more
Friday, July 23, 2010
This week a federal court in Connecticut issued a ground-breaking decision in a Title IX athletics case brought by the ACLU against Quinnipiac University.  Title IX is the landmark legislation passed in 1972 which prohibits educational institutions from discriminating against students based on sex.  Title IX applies to all aspects of educational programming, including extracurricular athletic programs.
Thursday, June 24, 2010
Fair Play in Community Sports This summer marks the one-year anniversary of the Washington Fair Play Law, the law that requires community sports programs to provide equal benefits and opportunities to girls in sports. While the federal Title IX law has long prohibited discrimination in school sports, community sports programs could - and did - discriminate with impunity. So the Fair Play Law was passed to deal with persistent inequities that played out in community sports programs throughout the state. Read more
Friday, May 14, 2010
This session the Washington Legislature passed a landmark civil rights law (HB 3026). The measure explicitly prohibits discrimination based on race, sexual orientation including gender expression or identity, religion, disability, national origin, veteran or military status, and disability in public schools – sex discrimination was previously banned. And it gives the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) the tools to enforce compliance with these prohibitions against discrimination. This is an important step forward. But it's not time to breathe a sigh of relief yet. There is more work to ensure this law does what it is supposed to do. OSPI is hosting town halls across the state to get community members’ input to inform the creation of the Washington State Code (WAC) that will implement the new law.