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A Brighter Butter Future, Nike's Boy's Club, Ivanka's Business Shutdown, and More

July 30: Badass women and the news that affects them

Mitra Norowzi

Quick Hits

  • It’s been sort of a rough year for Nike — this spring saw several of the company’s top executives step down after complaints of a ‘boy’s club’ culture with little female representation. After conducting an internal pay review, Nike found that many of its women and POC employees were being underpaid. Fortunately, Nike has taken a step in the right direction, pledging to raise the salaries of over 7,000 of its workers. Fortune

  • Land O’Lakes has named Beth Ford as its new president and CEO, making her one of 25 women running a Fortune 500 company. Ford will also be one of three openly gay Fortune 500 CEOs and the only openly lesbian CEO. Fortune

  • The University of Southern California Marshall School of Business has become the first major business school in the country to reach gender parity — with an incoming fall class that will be 52 percent women. Poets and Quants

  • A new report from the Institute of Women’s Policy Research has found that less than 19 percent of patents are issued to women, and the numbers are even lower for people of color. Fast Company

  • Transgender people in Puerto Rico will now be able to update the gender markers on their birth certificates. Most U.S. states allow individuals to change their official gender, but not all, and the process can be frustrating and slow. LOGO

  • The U.S. has been named the most dangerous country in the developed world for women who give birth. Around 700 women die of childbirth each year — and experts estimate about half of those deaths are preventable. USA Today

  • Ivanka Trump’s clothing brand will be closing its doors for business. Although the line has done well in sales, controversy welled up regarding Trump’s overseas production. Further, her position in the White House brought up complex ethics guidelines that put a strain on the brand. Refinery 29

  • You know the phrase, “If you want something done right, do it yourself”? Well, that’s exactly what British physicist Dr. Jess Wade has done. After becoming acutely aware of the gender disparity within STEM during graduate school, and seeing little progress arising from gender equality initiatives, Wade decided to craft Wikipedia pages for the forgotten women of science. And she’s already written over 270 of them. Huffington Post

In The News

The murder of Nia Wilson, a Black teenage girl and recent high school graduate, left the nation — its Black communities in particular — reeling. Police have since arrested John Lee Cowell, a white man, in connection with the senseless attack on Wilson and her sister as they were waiting at a Bay Area Rapid Transit station. Though there has been no “official” determination of cause for the murder, many are convinced it was racially motivated. Actress Anne Hathaway took to her large Instagram platform to make a post about Wilson’s murder. Among other things, she wrote a sobering reminder for white Americans to consider in light of such a crime: “White people- including me, including you- must take into the marrow of our privileged bones the truth that ALL black people fear for their lives DAILY in America and have done so for GENERATIONS. White people DO NOT have equivalence for this fear of violence.” Vox

CW: Sexual Assault and Rape

  • Larry Nassar, the former sports doctor who was convicted of sexually assaulting hundreds of his patients, is seeking to appeal his sentence, saying he was attacked by fellow inmates in the U.S. Penitentiary in Tucson, Arizona, where he is serving a life sentence. Nassar’s lawyer argues that the blunt remarks of the judge who oversaw his case led to the attack and constitute grounds for resentencing. Huffington Post

  • Lawyers for convicted rapist Brock Turner, the Stanford swimmer who sexually assaulted an unconscious woman behind a dumpster, are also seeking to appeal his conviction. Turner’s case drew ire when he was granted a pittance of a sentence — six months, of which he only served three. Now, his lawyer is seeking to appeal the count of attempted rape, arguing that Turner never intended to rape his victim, as he was only seeking external sexual contact or “outercourse,” whatever the hell that means. Turner’s victim was found bloodied, and covered with abrasions, lacerations, and dirt, including in her genitalia, after two cyclists discovered Turner assaulting her. Refinery 29

That’s terrible! Is there anything to be hopeful about in this arena? Yes! Here’s why:

  • A bipartisan group of House representatives has put forth a bill to prevent employers from requiring workers to sign nondisclosure and non disparagement agreements related to workplace harassment. InHerSight places great value on transparency in the workplace, and we know sexual assault victims too often get caught in the snares of privacy agreements. Here’s hoping it passes! Vox

  • Activist Amanda Nguyen is campaigning to get the Sexual Assault Survivors’ Bill of Rights, a set of guaranteed legal protections for victims that she created after surviving her own assault, passed in all 50 states. President Barack Obama signed off on the bill at the federal level back in 2016. Huffington Post

  • And let’s not forget that the #MeToo movement is constantly working to expose and bring down abusers. We know it’s awful to have to hear about their crimes, but the fact that we know about them means justice is nigh. Here’s the latest in #MeToo:

  • PIMCO Risk Chief Bill de Leon has resigned after the company conducted an internal investigation amid allegations that de Leon inappropriately touched a colleague. Barrons

  • CBS Corp. will investigate claims of sexual misconduct expected to be aimed against CEO Leslie Moonves. Bloomberg

Around the World

Somalia will conduct its first prosecution for female genital mutilation after a 10-year-old girl bled to death after being mutilated. The Guardian

New Zealand will become the second country in the world to offer paid time off of work for victims of domestic violence (the Philippines was first). Victims will be able to take 10 days off work with pay, granting them the critical time they need to move out and seek safe shelter. The New York Times

In South Korea, new fathers can take up to 52 weeks of paid leave. That’s a pretty sweet deal, right? But for some reason, men weren’t taking it (sound familiar?). Some cited pressure from management not to take leave or fear about being disadvantaged when they returned to work. This year, however, saw a 66 percent increase in the number of men who took paternity leave. Hooray for gender equity in caretaking! Quartz

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