Author: lsokol

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After Meghan Hampsey was raped, she called her mom. She was a junior at George Washington University. Her mother, who lived in New York, got in the car. She arrived in DC four hours later and spent the weekend with Hampsey in her twin-sized bed. “I am really lucky to have a strong support network,”…

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(WOMENSENEWS)–Tiny cars buzz around a classroom in the Stanford Gates Computer Science Building as eight teen girls look on, laptops in hand. These young programmers at SAILORS, the Stanford Artificial Intelligence Laboratory Outreach Summer program, are testing code for their mini self-driving cars. These girls are part of a group of 32 females, all rising…

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Rwanda, Namibia, and Burundi are respectively ranked fifth, twelfth, and fourteenth on the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Index 2016. All have ratified their equivalent of an Equal Rights Amendment into their respective constitution equivalents, unlike the United States, which has not and ranks 45th. In these sub-Saharan countries, especially Rwanda, ratifying the Equal…

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As thousands gathered for the Los Angeles Pride festival in West Hollywood in June, Sabel Samone-Loreca found herself in the midst of the crowd, suddenly feeling ill. She asked paramedics to take her to nearby Cedars Sinai hospital, where the doctors knew her, knew that she had completed her transition from male to female, and…

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MISSION VIEJO, Calif. (WOMENSENEWS)—I didn’t find out I was autistic until I was 11. My parents knew seven years earlier but didn’t tell me because they wanted me to have a “normal” life. I uncovered my diagnosis when I was looking through my individual education plan papers. Knowing I was autistic helped me understand why…

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On my first day at the State Department, nearly six years ago, I cried.  Standing in a bare-bones conference room under an American flag, I choked up with pride as I repeated the oath of office: “I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States.” Six years later, I cried again when I…

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In this exciting new monthly series from peace-building organization NGO International Alert, we explore how achieving peace exists within our collective power. Through a new article each month, we will profile peacemakers around the world, from the stigmatized women and girls who escaped from Boko Haram in Nigeria to those tackling sexual and gender-based violence…

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When Carole King wrote the 1971 song “You’ve Got a Friend,” she may not have known that 46 years later she’d be honoring women who speak those same supportive words to help other women. King was among the celebrity presenters on June 19 at the 7th Annual Elly Awards Luncheon benefiting The Education Fund of the…

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In our on-going struggle towards gender equality, there are few who have embodied the courage and resolve necessary to challenge the powers that be like Betty Dukes. Last spring, as a student organizer, I had the honor of gathering an all-female panel of groundbreaking leaders eager to engage a room full of students about the…

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There is an increasing awareness that most of the girls and women who are bought and sold for sex in the United States are darker skinned and come from poverty. Half of that was true in my case. I grew up in a middle-class setting with a big, beautiful home, and I was an honor-roll…