Gender Parity Index 2022: Women Continue to Break Records—But We Must Break Down Barriers

RepresentWomen’s Gender Parity Index (GPI), which weighs women’s representation at the national, state and local levels, shows how incremental and sporadic progress for gender balance truly is. According to this year’s Index, there are no states that have reached gender parity — a basement metric if we’re to call ourselves a truly reflective 21st century democracy. A majority of states earned a “D” grade for women’s representation in government, further proving that we are not even close to fully cheering “shattered ceilings” or taking victory laps for national “broken records.” 

SCOTUS Claims Abortion Proponents Are Motivated by Eugenics and Eliminating the ‘Unfit’—But History Says Otherwise

Tucked away in a footnote of Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the Supreme Court proclaims that some “proponents of liberal access to abortion…have been motivated by a desire to suppress the size of the African American population.” It thus implies that overturning Roe v. Wade will turn the tide away from this genocidal impulse.

But history tells a different story.

Front and Center: Before Guaranteed Income and the Child Tax Credit, “Some Months I Would Fall Very Short”

Front and Center highlights the success of Springboard to Opportunities’ Magnolia Mother’s Trust, which this year will give $1,000 per month for 12 months to 100 families headed by Black women living in federally subsidized housing.

“When people say that programs like this will stop people from working, it just makes no sense to me. $1,000 isn’t enough for me to quit my job and is less than what I make, and what I make from working isn’t enough to cover all my bills. People like me need more income.”

The Battle for Abortion Access Heads to State Courts

Without the protections of Roe v. Wade, state laws—rather than federal law—now regulate whether people across the nation can receive abortion care. This grim moment also means that state supreme courts will be much more crucial in deciding state laws on abortion access.

Re:power, an organization dedicated to a future of inclusive politics, challenges the public to look at the power of state courts and speak truth to it. “The only way out is through.”

The U.S. Just Got One Step Closer to Over-the-Counter Birth Control

Reproductive justice advocates recently achieved a major milestone: the U.S. FDA received its first-ever application for an over-the-counter birth control pill.

The FDA approved the birth control pill for distribution in the United States by prescription in 1960, but it is only available by prescription from a doctor or pharmacist. If the OTC application is granted, Opill would be available on the grocery shelf next to tampons and condoms.

Demystifying Cyber: Cybersecurity Should Be on Everyone’s Radar, Says Congressional Staffer Hope Goins

Demystifying Cybersecurity highlights the experiences of Black practitioners, driving a critical conversation on race in the cybersecurity industry, and shining a light on Black experts in their fields.

This month, we spoke with Hope Goins, the majority staff director of the U.S. Committee on Homeland Security, about how cybersecurity affects everyone. “We need to find ways to make people realize the practical application of cybersecurity to their lives—from ensuring that children consume information via secure platforms to understanding how utilities like water and energy can be impacted by poor security.”

Deshaun Watson’s Slap on the Wrist Is a Slap in the Face to Women and Survivors

At least 30 massage therapists accused Deshaun Watson of unwanted sexual aggression during their sessions with him. To this day, Watson has shown absolutely no remorse or even understanding that what he did was wrong. But rather than suspending him for the entire 2022 season, as the NFL had wanted, Robinson issued a six-game suspension. Six games and he has to get all future massages from team therapists.

While the NFL’s disciplinary officer Sue L. Robinson said Watson’s conduct was “egregious” but “nonviolent,” there’s a short runway between ejaculating on people without their consent and escalating behaviors. Robinson’s decision is a slap on the wrist that feels like a slap in the face to women, sexual assault survivors, and sports fans who believe that the way you win is just as important as the victory.

Pregnancy as Punishment: The Impact of Abortion Bans on Incarcerated Women and Girls

The Dobbs decision is falling hard on young and low-income women, who don’t have the resources to travel out of state to obtain abortion healthcare. But an often-overlooked population especially hard hit is incarcerated women and girls, and those on probation and parole.

Close to 900,000 women and girls are under the control of federal, state and local carceral systems in the U.S. Prisons in states banning abortion can entirely block incarcerated pregnant women and girls from seeking abortion healthcare out of state and can even block those on probation and parole from traveling out of state to obtain abortions.