A round-up of what’s happening in the worlds of gender and sexuality.
In the US, ‘walking while trans’ can be a death sentence
At least 22 transgender people have been killed in the US so far this year, according to the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs, Reuters reported. Of these, 18 were black or Latina and the incidents were classified as hate crimes.
Daniel Trotta wrote on Reuters last week that the transgender community in the country has a name for the dirty looks that they face when they are out in public. The insults from strangers and a perceived presumption of guilt from police is called ‘walking while trans.’
“We are in a state of emergency because of the continuous attacks and murder of our community,” Bamby Salcedo, president of the TransLatin@ Coalition told Reuters. The organisation advocates for transgender immigrants.
There do not exist any official figures to track murders and assaults on transgender people, which likely resulting in an undercount of cases. The FBI, according to the Reuters article, reported zero hate crime homicides against transgender people in 2014, the latest year of available data, when the anti-violence coalition reported at least 11 black or Latina transgender women were killed.
Advocates believe that the police often misrepresent the gender of victims in reports and often presume the transgender victims or witnesses are the perpetrators when they arrive at the scene, creating a climate of mistrust.
The anti-violence coalition also found less than half of LGBT victims of hate violence report their cases to police and of the those who did, 80% said police were indifferent or hostile.
WikiLeaks document reveals gender pay gap at Clinton Foundation
Hacked email documents released by WikiLeaks show an apparent pay gap between the male and female employees at the Clinton Foundation.
According to Fox News, the document revealed that the male employees at the foundation averaged about $68,000 per year, while women were paid about $64,000.
The salary average accounted for 37 women and 25 men employed by the foundation. US presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has often touted equality in the workplace as an important part of her campaign.
A Catholic charity’s initiative for transgender people in India has its limitations
In its attempt to embrace the transgender community, Caritas India – a branch of Catholic social welfare organisation Caritas Internationalis – recently announced the launch of a program designed to fight discriminatory attitudes toward transgender people, Huffington Post reported.
The group is “open to work with transgender people,” Reverand Frederick D’Souza, the executive director of Caritas India, said in a statement reported by Vatican Radio. “I am even open to recruiting them.”
The new initiative attempts to fight the bias that is prevalent towards the community by conducting outreach, but it is not without its limitations.
Through the outreach the group hopes to mark the “beginning of a new school of thought,” in which Catholic leaders offer greater “attention and support” to those dealing with “sexual confusion in their body,” but according to Antonia Blumberg of Huffington Post, the initiative is limited to the group D’Souza classified as “biological transgenders,” which to him denoted those who identify with a different sex but have not undergone surgery.
“We don’t want to confuse the two,” D’Souza said in the statement. “We have an opinion on those who undergo sex change, we are not in favour of that. We believe that the natural gender one is born with is what he/she is supposed to cherish and contribute to creation.”
Blumberg went on to add how this statement from the Catholic charity bares a fundamental misunderstanding of being a transgender, which according to the census includes roughly 500,000 people in the country.
Despite the presence of hijras, or trans women, in ancient Hindu and Jain texts, the community remains largely marginalised in the Indian society, she wrote.
Thousands of women in Argentina protest against gender-related violence
Thousands of women across Argentina stopped work for an hour last week to protest against gender-related violence after an escalation in attacks against women and girls this month, the New York Times reported.
Dressed in black and waving signs with the names of victims of violence and chanting slogans, scores of women participated in mass demonstrations in Buenos Aires and demanded more protection for women.
According to a Reuters report, the protests were organised by a group called ‘Not One Less’ to express outrage over the recent rape and murder of 16-year-old Lucia Perez by at least two men.
According to the Secretariat of Human Rights, she was among the 19 women and girls murdered in the first 18 days of October.
An Argentine non-profit Permanent Assembly for Human Rights claims that one woman is killed in Argentina every 30 hours.
“Every day there is one woman less. None of us is exempt from the violence,” 27-year-old Daniela Valle Lende told the New York Times.
It was the third national protest organised by the group since June 2015.
The organisers demanded an end to the violence against women and a clampdown on the trafficking of girls for prostitution, more opportunities for job promotions, equal pay with men, longer maternity leave, child care for working mothers and free access to lawyers for victims of domestic violence.
Over 40% of young women in the UK expect to face discrimination at work
According to a poll conducted by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, more than four in ten young women – all aged between 13 and 22 – feel that gender discrimination would hold them back in their careers, The Guardian reports.
On the other hand, the survey found only 4% of boys believe they might also face some form of career limiting sex discrimination in the workplace.
The survey comes after a number of reports showed that women face a higher risk of harassment and discrimination at work. A recent TUC study found that more than half of all women and nearly two-thirds of women aged 18-24 said that they have experienced sexual harassment at work. Polling of 1,553 women, according to The Guardian, found 52% of them had experienced unwanted behaviour at work.
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