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This week's editor

Constitutional conventions: best practice

Too many Afghan women in London face racism, sexism – and unwanted pregnancies

Recent research on Afghan immigrant women in London has revealed a multi-layered crisis. What can be done to address this, and to empower them?

Abortire in Italia: come l'obiezione di coscienza è diventata una minaccia per i diritti e la salute delle donne

Quasi 40 anni dopo la legalizzazione dell'aborto – tra proteste e movimenti di liberazione culturale – le donne faticano ancora ad accedere ai servizi essenziali. Read this article in English.

Abortion in Italy: how widespread 'conscientious objection' threatens women’s health and rights

Almost 40 years after abortion was legalised – amid mass protests and a broader cultural liberation movement – women still struggle to access crucial services. Leggi questo articolo in italiano.

Sexual rights: off-limits for Indian women with disabilities?

Women with disabilities in India face routine violence, coercion and control over their sexual choices that would not be tolerated by non-disabled women.

Lessons from farmers and indigenous women: cultivate democracy

Learning to live in harmony with the land is co-constituent to human rights activism. Jennifer Allsopp reports for 50.50 from the second day of the 2017 Nobel Women's Initiative conference. 

Why the old Holloway Prison in north London should become a new women's building

This former site of state violence against women must be reclaimed – for the collective good.

Lessons from Syria on women's empowerment during conflict

Syrian women will be the pillars of any future democratic process. Their efforts deserve support from national and international actors.

Internally displaced women: social rupture and political voice

Displacement is social as well as geographical. Women’s welfare and survival depends significantly on their social relationships; displacement destroys this resource.

Escaping domestic violence: ‘according to the law, you are not here’

Many women survivors of violence in Europe cannot access support services because of their migration status. The right to live free from violence should be based on presence in a territory not legal status.  

Sex work: not prohibited, not permitted

Criminalization sets a context in which the range of human rights violations experienced by sex workers is validated. Cross-movement collaboration on decriminalizing sex work is needed, now, more than ever.

Repeal the Eighth: putting intersectionality into practice

A long-established conservative media frames the terms of abortion politics in Ireland. The pro-choice activism challenges dominant discourses with the inclusivity and diversity of the movement demonstrating intersectionality in practice.

Hungarian 'women's health': stigma and coercion

Political and media institutions in Hungary are promoting a coercive culture of intervention in female bodies under the banner of self-care.

Self-care in a digital space

For feminist activists, burnout is the norm. How can we best preserve collective wellbeing while practicing security in the digital world?

Stay Woke: sustaining feminist organising in an uncertain world

Autonomous feminist spaces must be guarded jealously. They are an important lifeline for feminists to re-charge and breath in a world that remains hostile to women’s freedom. We must stay woke.

Feminist Futures: building collective power for rights and justice

In times of unprecedented repression and violence, AWID’s upcoming International Forum aims to transform diverse sites of activism into a powerful interconnected web of new alliances.

Rhetoric meets reality: ending HIV and AIDS

Ending AIDS by 2030 is redundant rhetoric. It is meaningless without investment in community participation. Code red for action.

The diary of an AIDS activist: lost to temper and hungry for hope

“The real reason we haven’t beaten this epidemic boils down to one simple fact: we value some lives more than others”  -  Charlize Theron, speaking at the 21st International AIDS Conference in Durban.

Abortion and contraception in India: the role of men

The callous attitude of Indian men that  ‘she can always abort’ in cases of an unwanted pregnancy caused by failure to use a condom needs to be tackled at the root.

Crosstalk: HIV and linking across areas of criminalisation

In a moment of global attacks on civil society, an intersectional approach linking issues across HIV, sexuality, adult consensual sex and bodily integrity is critical.  Now, more than ever.

Tanzanian pastoralist women: HIV and health rights

Vertical health service provision alone will not solve the gender-based violence and HIV challenges facing pastoralist women in Tanzania. More holistic, rights-based policies are required.

HIV, AIDS and holistic healthcare: can spirituality and science meet?

The theme of next week's World Aids Conference in Durban, South Africa is 'Access, Equity, Rights Now'. Will its debates offer the whole answer to those preventing - or living with - HIV?

Ending HIV: UN slogans vs the voices of civil society

Last week’s UN meeting exposed the deep divide about whether HIV responses should commit to respecting, protecting and fulfilling human rights rather than blaming those who are most affected.

Ending HIV: ideology vs evidence at the UN

This week’s negotiations over the UN’s Political Declaration Ending AIDS are rife with circular debates, and sex, gender and sexuality are flashpoints of polarization. 

From colonials to corporates: maternal mortality in Assam’s tea gardens

For the women employed in the tea gardens of Assam, pregnancy is a life-threatening ordeal. An interactive exhibition records the struggle of Adivasi mothers across the decades for better conditions.  

Poland: a total ban on abortion?

With unprecedented political momentum for a total ban on abortion in Poland, thousands are marching in protest and the Prime Minister is receiving coat hangers in the post.

 

Behind the murder of Berta Cáceres: corporate complicity

The corporate denial of violation of human rights in the death of Berta Cáceres reveals the web of complicities and impunity that prompted her assassination.

UN CSW: debating women’s reproductive rights or a “culture of death” ?

In a cynical ploy, conservative religious groups based in the Global North now frame reproductive rights advocacy in the Global South as the neocolonialist imposition of a uniquely western value system.

CSW: groundbreaking US support for sexual rights

With the 60th UN Commission on the Status of Women underway in New York, the decision by the US to support sexual and reproductive health and rights - at last - presents a real opportunity to move the agenda forward.

The confinement of Eve: resolving Ebola, Zika and HIV with women’s bodies?

There are parallels between three major newsworthy viruses, Ebola, HIV and Zika, in relation to the global public health response and persistent and often toxic gender stereotypes. Español

When does the violation of women's bodies become a "red line"?

If people divide their understanding of militarized violence into normal and not normal, acceptable and not acceptable, it makes a terrible kind of sense: violence against women has been "normalized".

Gender lenses and refugee assistance

Gender matters greatly in any form of third party assistance. Refugee camps are not sanctuaries from violence if they are not safe for women and girls.

Welcome to our house: women living with HIV

The largest survey on women living with HIV, commissioned by the World Health Organisation, has revealed the stark truth about the gender-based violence and mental health challenges that positive women face.

16 Days: cutting Black and minority ethnic women's organisations

The EU Victims Directive comes into force this month. Will it prevent the further decimation of Black and minority ethnic organisations offering specialised services to women facing violence in the UK? 

Mapping women's resistance to social and ecological degradation

Women coming together to cross pollinate ideas and build understanding about differing burdens, responsibilities, and solutions is an essential part of worldwide efforts to restore the health of the planet.

Amnesty International: should sex work be decriminalized?

As Amnesty International meets to consider a resolution that calls for the decriminalization of sex work, those in favour argue it would be a step forward for the rights of sex workers.

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