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Un-Happy Meals, Girls Named James, 'Wild Peeing' in Paris, and More

September 17: Badass women and the news that affects them

Mitra Norowzi
Contributor

Quick Hits

  • Looking to start your own business? The Female Founders Alliance, a group of women startup leaders, has put together a five-week accelerator program to help female-founded startups raise more capital. They’ve also made it mom-friendly by allowing participants to work remotely for four out of the five weeks, and providing free housing and child care for participants to travel to San Francisco for the final week. InHerSight

  • Apple highlighted diversity at their annual showcase presenting their new iPhones — every image they showed featured a woman or person of color. Nice! That’s what we like to see! But...Apple still has a long way to go before it becomes truly diverse. According to the company’s 2017 diversity report, 68 percent of its employees were male and 54 percent were white. The numbers for employees in leadership roles were more disappointing — 71 percent were male and 66 percent were white. InHerSight

  • In continuance of the #MeToo movement, McDonald’s workers in multiple cities across the country have organized a one-day strike on September 18 to pressure management to take stronger measures against workplace sexual harassment in what will be the first multi-state strike in the U.S. focusing on this issue. Happy striking! Associated Press

  • We see you, Twitch! The video game streaming service announced three new executive hires Friday that will make the company’s executive team majority female. Mashable

  • So far this year, 878 CEO’s have stepped down from their roles. Of those, 152 were women. We’ll admit, we got a bit worried about female representation when we saw that powerhouses like Indra Nooyi of Pepsi was stepping down. Would the mere 5 percent amongst Fortune 500 CEO’s decrease even further? But, it seems like we don’t have too much to worry about — 152 women may have left, but 161 women have been added to replace them. Fortune

  • Nia Impact Capital has received the first-ever Gender Equity Now Award. The Daily Times

  • The Texas Board of Education has voted to remove mentions of Hillary Clinton and Helen Keller, among other figures, from its history curriculum. Teachers may still choose to teach about them, but learning about them will no longer be required material. Time

  • Parents are increasingly giving their girl babies traditionally male names! Girls with gender-neutral names are more likely to take advanced math and science classes in high school and female lawyers with traditionally male names are more likely to become judges. The Atlantic

In the World of Entertainment

  • Country Music Television’s (CMT) Artists of the Year show airing on October 17 will honor only women musicians after the country music industry has come under fire for a lack of female representation. InHerSight

  • Speaking of underrepresentation, women now account for only 40 percent of speaking roles on TV, down 2 points from last year. The number of women working behind the scenes has also decreased by 1 point. InHerSight

  • There is a silver lining, though. Of women’s speaking roles, Latina voices have reached an all-time high of 7 percent, up from 5 percent last year. Hollywood Reporter

In the World of Politics

  • Actress-turned-activist Cynthia Nixon lost her bid for governor against incumbent Andrew Cuomo in New York. But, she shared this inspiring message over Twitter: “To all the young people. To all the young women. To all the young queer people who reject the gender binary. Soon you’ll be standing here, and when it’s your turn, you’ll win.” Mashable

  • New York did see at least one promising victory, though — Letitia James became the first Black woman to win a major party statewide nomination in her bid for Attorney General. Five years ago, she made history by becoming the first Black woman to be elected to city-wide office in New York. And, if she wins against her Republican opponent in November, she’ll make it again by becoming the first Black woman to hold statewide office there. New York Times

  • Disturbing news about Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh has surfaced. In an anonymous letter sent to Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) this summer ahead of Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearings, Palo Alto University professor Dr. Christine Blasey Ford described how Kanvaugh sexually assaulted and attempted to rape her when they were high schoolers in Maryland. Ford’s letter claimed that she feared Kavanaugh might inadvertently kill her as he drunkenly held her down, covering her mouth. Although she initially requested to remain anonymous, Ford decided to come forward when news of her letter broke, despite the potential risks to her reputation and career. Vox

Around the World

  • Pope Francis has summoned the presidents of every bishops conference around the world for a February summit to figure out how to prevent child sex abuse in the church. When news broke of abuse by a Chilean priest, Francis was not receptive to fixing the problem, but has now admitted to an error of judgement. The summit is to include 100 presidents of bishops conferences and will be the first of its kind, signalling that the Catholic Church may finally be taking the issue of church predation seriously. PBS

  • Paris is now home to new bright-red eco-friendly public urinals or “uritrottoirs” in an attempt to solve the city’s “wild peeing” problem. But these new urinals are sparking important conversations about the appropriateness and hypocrisy such a product entails. Women are left wondering why there is no similar product designed for them, not to mention how men exposing themselves in public might be used to intimidate and harass. RightsInfo

  • For the first time in Morocco, legislation has been passed to protect women from violence and offer support to victims. But many claim the new law does not provide enough protection. For instance, marital rape is not included in the text and it fails to provide guidance and training to police, judges, and prosecutors. Middle East Eye

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