Thousands Gather to Demonstrate Against Gender-Based Violence
This past Saturday, thousands gathered in Kenya for the largest demonstration against sexual and gender-based violence in the country’s history. Kenyan women have faced a wave of femicides in recent years, and media outlets are reporting at least fourteen additional deaths in the first month of this year. Many protesters are demanding that the government declares femicide as a national emergency and establish expedited processes for adjudicating such crimes. Although current legislation exists to target gender-based violence, most violators avoid punishment. And even when crimes are prosecuted, it often takes years before a ruling is handed down. Demonstrators chanted “Sisi ni watu sio wanyama” in Swahili, meaning “we are human beings not animals.”
New York City Initiative Aims to Address Gender Disparities
Mayor Eric Adams of New York City has unveiled a new program— “Women Forward NYC” —that will support investments for women, including transgender and gender-fluid individuals. The initiative will spend more than $43 million to address gender disparities in professional development, health care, gender-based violence, and housing. Adams said, “This plan builds on our administration’s existing efforts by creating a clear path to holistically and comprehensively address the inequities women face today. New York City leads the nation in many ways — now, it’s time we lead on gender equity and take the steps to make this the most women-forward city in America.” In New York, women continue to be paid 86 cents for every dollar a man makes, with even more discrepancies for women of color.
Trans Rights Under Threat
Last week, lawmakers in Ohio voted to ban access to gender-affirming care for minors and to prohibit transgender athletes from competing on girls and women's sports teams. Ohio’s republican governor, Mike DeWine, had previously vetoed the legislation after hearing from parents of transgender youth that such care was lifesaving. But the Ohio senate successfully over-rode the governor’s veto. The law will come into force in ninety days, blocking physicians from providing any care to assist a minor with gender transition. It will also prohibit schools that participate in national athletic competitions from allowing participation by trans athletes.