News Archives

Survey Reveals Gender Discrimination among Health Trainees and Professionals

Indian Express, India, 2/9/2019

Hesitation about reporting cases of sexual harassment and experiences of being made to feel inferior were common among female health trainees and professionals, as per the findings of a survey conducted across various medical centres in the world. The survey findings were reported in The Lancet special series on advancing women in science, medicine and global health. Between February 2017 and January 2018, a total of 653 women across various medical centres - including B J Medical College in Pune - were part of this survey that focussed on finding gender-based challenges that female healthcare trainees and professionals face. The reported gender discrimination issues included discouragement from promotions or leadership positions for women; while sexual harassment was another major issue, with unwelcome sexual advances reported by 120 participants.

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U.N. Rights Panel Calls on Japan to Address High Levels of Violence against Children

Japan Times, Geneva, 2/8/2019

A U.N. panel expressed concern on February 8, 2019, about ‘the high level of violence, sexual abuse and exploitation of children’ in Japan. The Committee on the Rights of the Child called on the government to ‘prioritise the elimination of all forms of violence against children,’ including by putting in place effective reporting mechanisms for victims. Concerns over child abuse cases rekindled in Japan after 10 year old Mia Kurihara died in January 2019 at her home due to alleged mistreatment by her parents. In its concluding report, the U.N. committee urged the government to establish ‘child-friendly reporting, complaint and referral mechanisms for child victims of abuse, including in schools, and sexual exploitation, supported by staff trained on the specific needs of child victims.’

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Bohra Women Want Genital Mutilation Issue In 2019 Election Manifestos

The Indian Express - Mumbai, India, 2/7/2019

A group of Bohra Muslim women on February 6, 2019, urged political parties to take steps to end the practice of female genital mutilation (FGM) prevalent in their community and make the issue part of their poll manifestos. The women gave the call on the 'International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation’, which is observed on February 6. The United Nations has dubbed the practice as a violation of human rights. ‘A lot of political parties talk about women’s rights and saving the girl child. We want to ask them what is their take on FGM? Will they end it? Will they support a ban on it? If yes, they deserve our vote,’ WeSpeakOut, a private organisation led by an FGM survivor, said in a statement.

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Japanese LGBT couples will file Valentine’s Day lawsuits demanding gay marriage be made legal

South China Morning Post, Japan, 2/6/2019

On February 14, 2019, at least 13 same-sex couples will file coordinated lawsuits in district courts across Japan. The couples will seek damages over claims that the national government and authorities had violated their constitutional right to equality. The legal action will be the first of its kind in Japan, and its organisers have timed it for maximum publicity. Activists accuse Japan of lagging behind other countries on LGBT issues, since it is the only member of the G7 – representing the world’s largest advanced economies – that does not recognise same-sex unions. It’s not the first time the fight has entered the legal realm in Japan, but the situation has intensified since voters in Taiwan, once seen as a beacon of LGBT rights, rejected a proposal to allow same-sex marriage.

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Zambia Orders Suspension of DSTV Show Over Homosexuality

Premium Times, Zambia, 2/5/2019

Zambia’s broadcasting regulator on February 5, 2019, ordered Africa’s biggest television operator, Multichoice, to suspend a reality show for allegedly promoting homosexuality. The Independent Broadcasting Authority (IBA) said Multi Choice Zambia, a unit of the South Africa-based television operator, should immediately suspend the Lusaka Hustle reality show on the DSTV platform, for allegedly ‘promoting a lifestyle contrary to Zambia’s values and culture’. In one of its episodes, a participant of the show, Kuni, was seen wearing an outfit that exposed his thighs which was panned by netizens to be a ‘homosexual’ act, Hence, the authorities shut down the show, stating that the move was in ‘public interest’. There still remains a ban on homosexuality in Zambia.

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