18 January 2011

Weekly Round-Up: Grantees Making Waves Nationwide

What have Ms. Foundation for Women grantees been up to recently? Read below to learn more about how the groups we support are changing the world around us -- every day.
  • In response to the Arizona shootings, GRITtv highlighted a valuable interview with immigrant rights activist Salvador Reza of Tonatierra, a Ms. Foundation grantee. More than a year before this violent act took place, Reza spoke presciently about the climate of hate building in Arizona, and the dangerous outcomes of discriminatory immigration policies. Watch and learn.
  • Did you know that women veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan are more likely to suffer from mental health problems, but that men are twice as likely to receive VA benefits to treat PTSD? On January 11, Anuradha Bhagwati of Service Women's Action Network appeared on CNN to discuss this and other challenges that women veterans face upon returning home. Bhagwati took time to highlight the high levels of combat stress and sexual trauma faced by women in today's military, and noted that the troubling gap in benefits awarded to women is in part a result of policies that prohibit women from serving in combat roles -- despite the fact that women are effectively serving on the front lines every day. Read the transcript to learn more.
  • Led by two Ms. Foundation grantees -- NLIRH and NAPAWF -- and SEIU, the National Coalition for Immigrant Women's Rights (NCIWR) offered up some much needed and clear-eyed commentary on the introduction of legislation to undo a key clause of the 14th Amendment -- the latest attack on immigrants' rights. From "anchor babies" to "alien invaders," NCIWR looks at how anti-immigrant language vilifies women and children in the debate over immigration reform, and scapegoats vulnerable communities.
  • On Friday, January 14, grantee group Family Planning Advocates of New York State was featured on North Country Public Radio discussing Governor Andrew Cuomo's early support for the Reproductive Health Act. FPA has led the way in advocating passage of the bill -- which would protect abortion in New York state should Roe v Wade ever be overturned -- and has penned an important and informative memo in support of its passage.
  • The National Day Laborers Organizing Network released a unique interactive timeline of anti-immigrant violence in Arizona, which was featured on the Roll Call blog. A History of Hate: Political Violence in Arizona provides a detailed, chronological list of critical acts of violence against immigrant communities stretching from 1987 to today -- a reminder of the many lives at stake in the struggle for just and inclusive immigration reform. 
  • Grantee Win Alert! The Richmond, California City Council unanimously approved a new solar and green jobs resolution -- a piece of legislation fiercely advocated for by Ms. Foundation grantee Solar Richmond. Richmond’s Mayor, Gayle McLaughlin, noted that “given Richmond’s high unemployment rate, we need to pursue all strategies for job creation, including in the rapidly growing clean energy sector.” Congrats to Solar Richmond on a job well done!
  • HIRE Minnesota’s analysis of workforce data from the Minnesota Department of Transportation for the past three construction seasons found that after significant job losses in 2008 and 2009, women and people of color finally saw an uptick in hiring by the DOT in 2010. In fact, hiring of these groups rose by as much as 45%, thanks in part to advocacy by HIRE MN to advance hiring equity. In 2011, MnDOT will formally adopt all of the group's suggested transparency and results measures -- another major win for transportation workers in the state! 
Photo by Elizabeth Rappaport. Service Women's Action Network, New York City Veterans' Day Parade, November 2010.

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