Gender Equity


Friday, January 14, 2011
The benefits to students of playing high school and collegiate sports have been well-documented, from improved academic performance to better physical and emotional health.  In October 2010, the Women’s Sports Foundation and the National Center for Lesbian Rights released a ground-breaking report that provides policy recommendations for high school and college institutions on the inclusion of transgender student athletes.  On the Team: Equal Opportunities for Transgender Student-Athletes was drafted after WSF and NCLR held a national think tank in Indianapolis in October 2009, bringing together medical, legal, and athletic experts from all over the country. The report contains the think tank’s policy recommendations about how to include transgender students in sports while taking into account the competitive contexts of high school and collegiate athletics, along with medical and legal concerns.  
Tuesday, January 4, 2011
Let’s take truancy out of the top five reasons that girls in Washington state are locked up each year. According to the Governor’s Juvenile Justice Advisory Committee’s 2009 Annual Report, truancy was among the leading reasons for detention of girls. Statistics are not posted yet for 2010. There appears to be some good news in the same chart: in 2006, 2007 and 2008, more than 700 girls were locked up each year for truancy; in 2009, the chart shows “only” 273 were locked up for truancy.  The bad news is that 273 were locked up in 2009 for truancy. And Washington law still allows incarceration as a consequence for kids who miss school without excuse in violation of a court’s order telling them that, as the law says, they have to go to school. Others are locked up if they miss a court hearing in a truancy case.
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
A recent investigation by the House Committee on Energy and Commerce brought to light several disturbing findings about the inequities expectant parents face in the insurance market. Read more
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