News Archives

Movie Based on Popular Novel Puts South Korean Gender Divide Back in Focus

Times of India, South Korea, 10/31/2019

A movie based on a controversial and best-selling novel that chronicled the everyday sexism faced by women has topped South Korea’s box office, reigniting a national debate over women’s roles in an historically male-dominated society. 'Kim Ji-young, Born 1982' - based on a 2016 book of the same name – which released in South Korea last has highlighted divisions within the country over sexism, the #MeToo movement, and feminism. The story follows a married woman in her 30s who feels forced by social circumstances to give up her work in order to raise her young child. In a survey of 1,000 single South Koreans aged between 19 and 44 by pollster Realmeter in September, 81.2% of respondents said gender conflict was a serious issue in South Korea.

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Rights Groups Slam Bahrain over Detention of Female Activists

Al Jazeera, Bahrain, 10/30/2019

Rights groups on October 30, 2019 slammed the Bahraini government for what they say is the systematic targeting of female political activists and their mistreatment in prisons. A recent report titled Breaking the Silence: Bahraini Women Political Prisoners Expose Systemic Abuses, outlines the cases of nine former and current female prisoners in Bahrain throughout the process of their arrests and trials, as well as the conditions of their detentions. The 138-page report found that the women activists were arrested without search warrants and were subjected to physical, psychological and sexual assaults during interrogation. Of the nine women mentioned in the report, three are still detained in a women's prison under dehumanising conditions, while six other women have been released after serving prison sentences.

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Free Bus Rides for Over 2.2 Lakh Women on Day 1 of Delhi Scheme

The Indian Express - New Delhi, India, 10/29/2019

Delhi government’s free bus ride scheme for women rolled out on October 29, 2019, and by 4 pm, over 2.2 lakh women constituted approximately 32% of the total ridership till then on DTC and cluster buses. Under the scheme, women will not have to pay anything to travel on 5,589 buses that run on the city’s roads. The cost of travel will be reimbursed to bus operators, with the Delhi government paying them a fixed fare of Rs 10 per commuter. The scheme, which was first proposed in June 2019, was an effort to ensure greater mobility for women. The government had also proposed free travel for women on Delhi Metro, but that is yet to be implemented until a new Fare Fixation Committee is notified.

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Maternal, Infant Health Improves in India, Says Study

News18, India, 10/28/2019

Community-based health programmes in parts of India, Ethiopia and Nigeria have been successful in improving health care for mothers and newborns, but inequities still exist, says a new study published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal (CMAJ). To assess the impact of community-based health interventions linked to the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals, an international team of researchers looked at eight essential maternal and newborn health indicators in rural India, Ethiopia and Nigeria, representing more than 22 million people. Indicators included antenatal and postnatal care, births in health care facilities, hygienic umbilical cord care, breastfeeding initiation and more. According to the researchers, inequities in rural settings mean that more work is needed to reach these families, who record higher numbers of maternal and newborn mortality.

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In Japan, Workplace Bullying and Harassment are Driving Women to Seek Mental Health Treatment

South China Morning Post, Japan, 10/27/2019

A recent government report released in Japan has found that a third of about 1,000 women who received treatment for mental illness over a seven-year period attributed their ill health to sexual harassment, assault, bullying or the abuse of power by superiors at work. Workplace harassment is far from unusual in Japan, with its often brutal work culture. The government has taken steps to tackle this, introducing legislation specifically to eliminate harassment at work and encouraging companies to draw up their own guidelines to prevent it, but progress on the law is seen to be slow. However, the higher numbers are also an indication of increased reporting of workplace harassment, and increased access to mental health care, in comparison to what it was before.

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