The alarming erasure of black women in science textbooks

A new study surveying more than 1,000 names found in common biology textbooks in the US revealed that the most common scientists featured were white men, and that just over 13 percent were women.

The study, titled, “A scientist like me: demographic analysis of biology textbooks reveals both progress and long-term lags” was published on The Royal Society Journal. It revealed 962 names in the textbooks were of men, and 145 scientists were women, representing a 1:7 ratio of women to men. That is seven men for every woman scientist.

Even more startling in their findings was the almost entire erasure of women who were BIPOC in the textbooks. In fact, not one single black woman was represented across any textbooks that were analysed. A mere 6.7 percent of scientists were from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic backgrounds.

Source: The alarming erasure of black women in science textbooks

‘Beggars belief’: women’s office excluded from talks on $150m scheme to boost females in sport

The department responsible for advising the prime minister on women’s policy was excluded from consultations about a $150m program to improve female participation in community sports that was subsequently caught up in the sports rorts saga.

Source: ‘Beggars belief’: women’s office excluded from talks on $150m scheme to boost females in sport | Coalition | The Guardian

Stop the brutality: Abolish prisons

Most women in prisons have gone through violent or sexual abuse. These already vulnerable women are then subjected to more abuse from the state. They need people to start speaking out for them, not judging them.

As an advocate for First Nation women prisoners, especially Yamatji prisoners, I find the present situation disturbing. Prisoner numbers just keep growing and new prisons keep getting built. I have learned that the number of First Nations women being locked up is growing at a faster rate than any other demographic. These women, who have more than likely encountered an aggressive police officer or two, are taken from their children or, even worse, their children are put in state care. Prison breaks up families, causing more social issues back in the community.

Women detainees also face violations of their bodies via multiple strip searches. What the average Australian would call a violation of a woman’s body is done legally in prison. The prison system legally violates a woman’s body in the name of law and order.

I support prison abolition and while people are being locked away in cages, I will continue to be an abolitionist. There is not only a strong need to abolish the police force but an even stronger need to abolish the prison system. They work hand in hand, the police and prison systems.

[Deborah Green is a Yamatji woman and writer.]

Source: Stop the brutality: Abolish prisons | Green Left

After Robodebt, it’s time to address ParentsNext

Our research suggests ParentsNext needs also to be addressed .

It subjects more than 75,000 low-income parents of pre-school children, 95% of whom are female, to a compulsory, complicated and discriminatory “pre-employment program”.

In December 2018, 75,259 people were in ParentsNext: 95% women, 19% Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander, 21% culturally and linguistically diverse, and 12% with a disability.

ParentsNext continues largely unreformed despite the Senate committee’s recommendation that it cease in its current form.

It is consistent with a long Australian history of blaming, punishing and stigmatising welfare recipients and single mothers in particular.

Source: After Robodebt, it’s time to address ParentsNext

Special report: As men’s sport clamours to restart, how women’s sport is being abandoned 

Across the sporting landscape, men’s sport is gearing up to resume, headlined by the return of the Premier League on June 17. Meanwhile, women’s competitions are being abandoned by governing bodies and sponsors alike.

“This pandemic has highlighted more than ever how women’s sport is underfunded,” says Sam Bird, the head coach at Superleague franchise London Pulse. “We do not have the luxury of being able to provide tests for players, or control over our own premises to provide a safe working environment.”

Source: Special report: As men’s sport clamours to restart, how women’s sport is being abandoned 

Every Mother is a Working Mother Network 

We are a national multi-racial grassroots network of mothers, other carers and supporters campaigning to establish that raising children is work and that caring work has economic value, entitling us to welfare and other resources.

Source: Every Mother is a Working Mother Network

Dear Men, start putting your home schooling where your mouth is

A report in the New York Times by Claire Cain Miller says that nearly half of men say they do most of the home schooling. Only 3 percent of women agree.

[T]his isn’t the first time research has shown a huge disconnect between what men say or believe they are doing on the domestic front and reality.

As Cain Miller points out in the NYT article, past research using time diaries has consistently shown that men often overestimate the amount they do, and that women actually do more.

If that wasn’t enough, in 2018, in a piece entitled “The ‘Woke’ Men Who Still Want Housewives”, US-based feminist writer Jessica Valenti wrote about a new study with data spanning four decades that shows while Americans’ attitudes on gender are progressing (there is broad support for equality between men and women) there is still a major gap in how people reconcile their political beliefs with their private lives.

Twenty-five percent of the people surveyed in the study said that while women and men should be equal in the “public sphere”, they believed women should do the majority of domestic work and childcare.

After nearly a decade that has seen the proliferation of “engaging men for gender equality” initiatives, such as Male Champions of Change here in Australia (which celebrates its tenth anniversary this year) and the UN Women’s HeForShe global solidarity movement for gender equality, that’s just not good enough.

Source: Dear Men, start putting your home schooling where your mouth is

Judge dismisses US women’s soccer team’s crusade for equal pay

The U.S women’s soccer team have been dealt a crushing blow after a federal judge rejected their claims that they had been underpaid relative to the U.S men’s team due to gender discrimination.The ruling, delivered by Judge R. Gary Klausner, comes 10 months after chants of ‘Equal pay! Equal pay!’ erupted among a nearly 60,000 strong crowd after the U.S women’s team won the World Cup last July.

The players involved in the lawsuit make up the most successful women’s soccer team in the world, having won four World Cup titles – a staggering feat in comparison to the US men’s team that did not qualify for the 2018 World Cup.

As player Becky Sauerbrunn said,”If you know this team at all you know we have a lot of fight left in us. We knew this wasn’t going to be easy, change never is.”

Source: Judge dismisses US women’s soccer team’s crusade for equal pay

It’s time to properly consider the value of women’s work

When the Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced the latest coronavirus spending spree he said this: “You may have thought that was a lot (of money)“. Consider this. According to a new analysis from Oxfam, if American women received a minimum wage for the unpaid care work they do around the house, including caring for relatives, they would have made $1.5 trillion last year.

Globally, women would have earned $10.9 trillion. That exceeds the combined revenue of the 50 largest companies on the Fortune Global list. Women perform 75 percent of such work globally.

As schools and childcare centres close, as elderly or disabled parents, friends or neighbours require additional support, and as individuals en-masse (at least those lucky enough to still have a job) work from home, it begs the question: who will take on the burden of the additional unpaid care and domestic work that goes along with these seismic changes?

The short answer, most experts agree, is women. At least in the short to medium term. Past behaviour predicts future behaviour and all that.

This pandemic is causing a dramatic reappraisal on many fronts. Who would have thought Australia would essentially see the introduction of a basic income?

The value of women’s work, or the traditional undervaluing of such work, should not escape such scrutiny.

Source: It’s time to properly consider the value of women’s work

75% of the UK’s NHS workers are women. But average hospital protective-wear designed for the average man

Seventy five per cent of NHS workers in the UK are women, a figure that rises to 90 percent for nurses. And yet the personal protective equipment (PPE) currently being used across the country’s 1,257 hospitals were designed for the “size and shape of male bodies”.

That’s according to the British Medical Association, a professional organisation for doctors, with over 160,000 members.

Source: 75% of the UK’s NHS workers are women. But average hospital protective-wear designed for the average man