Microsoft women greeted by sceptical court in unequal-pay case

Women engineers who claim Microsoft Corp. discriminates against them for pay and promotions faced tough questions from a federal appeals court weighing whether their ground-breaking lawsuit should become a class action.

The lawsuit against Microsoft is the first in a series of gender-pay-disparity cases against big technology companies to reach an appeals court over the question of class-action status.

The three plaintiffs want to represent about 8,630 peers who have worked for the company since 2012. Pursuing the case on behalf a large group would give the women much stronger leverage in settlement negotiations before a trial.

Women employees at Twitter Inc. lost their bid for class-action status in July 2018 in San Francisco state court. Similar cases against Oracle Inc. and Google are pending.

Source: Microsoft women greeted by sceptical court in unequal-pay case

Gender pay gap is at its most extreme for women in their 50s

New research released by UK based organisation Rest Less has revealed that the gender pay gap at its most extreme for women in their 50s.

Last year, government research showed age discrimination occurred at an alarming rate in Australian organisations, where 30 percent of surveyed employers admitted to not employing people over 50.

While In 2017, the National Bureau of Economic Research tested for the prevalence of age discrimination in hiring and found that that the résumés of older women got far fewer callbacks than both those of older men and younger applicants of either gender. As The Guardian columnist Suzanne Moore puts it, “Being good at your job seemingly counts for little. Try getting a new job past 55.”

Source: Gender pay gap is at its most extreme for women in their 50s

Struggling with the juggle? Working parents report difficulties managing their health

[O]ne in three mothers (34 per cent) reported missing out on opportunities for promotion due to taking paid parental leave, compared with 11 per cent of fathers.

And around a third of women again (35 per cent) reported missing out on promotion opportunities due to their use of flexible work, compared with 14 per cent of men.

Other key findings from the preliminary results include:
• Nearly half of all respondents (46 per cent) said that a worker’s commitment to their job was questioned if they used family-friendly work arrangements.
• Most parents (85 per cent) reported that paid parental leave was offered at their workplaces and around half of all mothers and fathers had accessed all or part of the parental leave benefit.
• But more than half of fathers (57 per cent) and one-third of mothers reported the leave was ‘too short’.
• Twenty-three per cent of mothers and 13 per cent of fathers reported receiving negative comments from managers and supervisors for using paid parental leave.

Source: Struggling with the juggle? Working parents report difficulties managing their health

‘She taught me to survive’: Kristina Keneally’s fight for parents of stillborns

In Australia, six babies every day are stillborn with the rate remaining largely unchanged for two decades.

[M]ost organisations in Australia don’t extend their parental leave policies to cover employees recovering after a stillbirth. Keneally’s quest is therefore to have more employers standardise this as part of their framework; a change that would not impact a company’s bottom line given they’d already accounted for that employee’s leave.

Source: ‘She taught me to survive’: Kristina Keneally’s fight for parents of stillborns

The Visible Farmer initiative showcasing power of women in agriculture

On International Day of Rural Women 2019, the Visible Farmer campaign is working hard to put a spotlight on the often hidden faces of women in agriculture.

According to the Australian Federation of Business and Professional Women, half of all our food is produced by the work of women.

Source: The Visible Farmer initiative showcasing power of women in agriculture

US sprinter Allyson Felix beats Usain Bolt’s gold medal record 10 months after giving birth

A 33-year-old U.S. sprinter broke a world record for gold medals Sunday, toppling former record-holder Usain Bolt.

Allyson Felix won her 12th gold medal at the World Championships during the mixed-gender 4x400m relay, Business Insider reports. Bolt was the previous World Championships record-holder, since 2013, with a total of 11 gold medals.

It was Felix’s first race since giving birth to her daughter, Camryn, in November 2018.

As Felix gets ready for her fifth Olympics, she also has been vocal against Nike’s long-standing maternity policies for sponsored athletes. She’s pushing so that she and other female athletes won’t be impacted financially for being pregnant.

Source: US sprinter Allyson Felix beats Usain Bolt’s gold medal record 10 months after giving birth | WBNS-10TV Columbus, Ohio | Columbus News, Weather & Sports

Sex at the High Court: On the Redefinition of “Sex” in Civil Rights Law and Faulty Accounts of “Discrimination”

Activists are asking the Court to rewrite our nation’s civil rights laws in a way that would directly undermine one of their main purposes: protecting the equal rights of girls and women. Congress did not legislate such an outcome, and the Court should not usurp Congress’s authority by imposing such an extreme policy on the nation. Biology is not bigotry, and the Court should not conclude otherwise.

Source: Sex at the High Court: On the Redefinition of “Sex” in Civil Rights Law and Faulty Accounts of “Discrimination” – Public Discourse

Only 2% of global art auction spending is on work by women, study finds

A new study has found that despite perceived signs of progress, the art world remains overwhelmingly male-dominated.

According to a report assembled by In Other Words & artnet News, the last 10 years has found a lack of growth for female representation in art with just 2% of global art auction spending on work by women. This figure is also unevenly distributed, with five artists making up 40.7% of this figure and Yayoi Kusama in particular accounting for 25% alone.

“The art world is simply not the liberal, progressive bastion that it imagines itself to be,” said Helen Molesworth, a former chief curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, “and you can’t solve a problem you can’t own.”

Source: Only 2% of global art auction spending is on work by women, study finds | Art and design | The Guardian

French council fined for having too many female managers

A district council in eastern France has been fined €90,000 (£81,000) for appointing too many women to its management team in breach of public-sector gender parity laws.

Public institutions are usually fined for failing to meet the statutory 40 per cent quota of women in top jobs under a 2012 parity law. This is the first time a state body is known to have been penalised for appointing more than 60 per cent women to senior positions. Few employers were aware that the maximum limit could apply to women as well as men.

Jean-François Debat, the chairman of the Bourg-en-Bresse council, is unapologetic. “I think it’s comical to be punished for this reason,” he said. “Not only do I stand by our appointments, I’m proud of having so many women in our management teams.”

Source: French council fined for having too many female managers