Research & Action Report Spring/Summer 2005
In March of 2005, with funding from The Margaret L. Keon International Understanding Initiative, representatives from the Wellesley Centers for Women (WCW) attended the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) conference in New York. The program focused on two issues: 1) review of the implementation of the Beijing Platform for Action and the outcome documents of the special session of the General Assembly, entitled "Women 2000: Gender Equality, Development and Peace for the Twenty-First Century" and 2) current challenges and forward-looking strategies for the advancement and empowerment of women and girls.
Interview by Susan Lowry Rardin
This is a fateful time for the United States. Two distinct visions for the country were pitted against each other in the recent elections. Clearly, women’s rights are still in question; civil rights are seen by some as irrelevant; and the federal budget deficit looms without a consensus as to its importance or how to fix it.
Public policy decisions, which often seem about war and the budget, are, in fact, always about women as well. Though we must focus on “women’s issues,” we must not lose sight of the importance for women of economic and military issues, Supreme Court and other judicial court appointments, and even environmental policies. As the Wellesley Centers for Women motto goes: “A world that is good for women is good for everyone.” - Jean Hardisty, Ph.D.
On an almost daily basis, I see, read, or hear a story about how women can improve their careers, advance in their pay levels, and avoid the stereotypes associated with women in the workforce. As a feminist, I am interested in these developments and am always rooting for women to pioneer new positions and achieve new forms of advancement.
Story after story of former welfare recipients who now hold jobs have created the dominant media metaphor—women formerly leading hopeless, dead-end lives are required by welfare reform to become employed and now are thrilled with their independence and new sense of self-worth.
Senior Scholar Jean Hardisty shares her thinking on structural racism engrained in U.S. society that became front-page news during Hurricane Katrina coverage.