First Woman Passes Marine Corps Infantry Training

It’s been an empowering summer for women all over the world. A generous mom donating 5,000 pints of breastmilk and OB-Gyn delivering another woman’s baby before her own are proving than women are, in fact, super. At the cherry on top of a closing September is an anonymous lieutenant who became the first woman to pass the Marine Corps infantry training.

“Female troops are invaluable for searching houses and communicating with local women, gaining access to spaces and information that, because of local custom, male troops cannot get,”

The woman, set to lead a 40-strong platoon, passed a 13-week course along with 87 others. Of 1.4 million active troops in the United States, only 15% are female, making the feat doubly impressive.

The Corps says it educates would-be officers in “the leadership, infantry skills, and character required to serve as infantry platoon commanders”.

The everyday Wonder Woman will be stationed at Camp Pendleton, California for her first assignment. It looks like girl power is certainly on the rise!

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Tunisian Women Can Now Marry Non-Muslims

Across the globe, the LGBT community is finally receiving the rights it deserves. In Canada, gender discrimination is outlawed. Taiwan became the first Asian country to recognize same-sex marriage. However, homosexuality remains a crime in many countries. In fact, some traditional marriages aren’t even tolerated due to religious factors. But President Beji Caid Essebsi of Tunisia is shifting views, now allowing Tunisian women to marry non-Muslims.

Until now, a non-Muslim man who wished to marry a Tunisian Muslim woman had to convert to Islam and submit a certificate of his conversion as proof.

Tunisia, which is 99% Muslim, is viewed as one of the most progressive Arab countries in terms of women’s rights.

Non-Muslim marriages were restricted in 1973. The president referred to it as an obstacle to one’s freedom of choice. Baffling was the fact that the law did not apply to men and included minority women who were Jewish or Christian.

Scrapping the decree may not do away with the cultural and traditional obstacles women face with their families in cases of inter-faith marriage, but it now offers Tunisian women greater freedom of choice from a legal perspective.

The battle for women’s rights may be a little worn out, but remains optimistic. A round of applause for Tunisia!

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Stay-at-Home Female Doctors Serve the Poor Online

Women have been slowly but surely breaking the barriers that have been set for them in the past centuries. A beauty queen with Down’s syndrome made history, single mothers run startup companies, more women are fighting back against sexual harassment and even lead hundreds of people to resuscitate a dead river.

Here’s to another amazing woman. A female Pakistani doctor recognized the odds stacked against physicians in her context, and acted to provide more flexible options for women in the medical industry. Dr. Iffat Aga founded a platform to connect home-based female doctors to poor communities.

Sehat Kahani is a revolutionary tele-health platform that connects at-home, out-of-work doctors who can provide quality health care to underprivileged patients in low and middle-income markets.

The organization currently constitutes a network of 14 facilities across Pakistan which have served more than 550,000 patients. When a patient visits the clinic, a nurse logs their basic medical history, and then doctors are called in to continue the consultation through a video conferencing system.

The percentage of women in local medical schools are higher than those of men, but less than half of these women eventually end up as practitioners because they believe they need to nurture their families first. Because of the responsibility weighing down on them, female doctors stop pursuing their careers.  Dr. Iffat knew this problem needed a solution, so she partnered up with women who similarly understood — and perhaps personally experienced — the crisis, and together they built Sehat Kehani.

With a vision to create an all-female health provider network, Sehat Kahani simultaneously promotes women’s empowerment and entrepreneurship, and the basic need for affordable, quality healthcare in rural and urban communities – all without the doctors ever having to leave their homes.

It is truly an inspirational balancing act to target both the issues of gender inequality and poverty at the same time. Women are not only fighting for their own rights; they are doing so in order to join larger fights.

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Saudi Arabia Lifts Ban On Women Drivers

Throughout the course of history, women across the globe have been fighting for their rightful place in society. Unfortunately, the war is far from over — but women continue to speak out. Robyn and Michelle Lyle are working to remove the stigma on breast education. Now, Saudia Arabia is lifting its 27-year-old ban on female drivers — an enormous victory for thousands.

Saudi leaders… hope the new policy will help the economy by increasing women’s participation in the workplace. Many working Saudi women spend much of their salaries on drivers or must be driven to work by male relatives.

Many have attempted to justify the ban by claiming that driving would promote promiscuity or even damage women’s ovaries. For long, Saudi women have been subject to male “guardianship.” The law, which requires male consent for a woman’s actions, is limiting and humiliating. Eliminating the ban will have positive effects on many aspects of Saudi life.

Low oil prices have limited the government jobs that many Saudis have long relied on, and the kingdom is trying to push more citizens, including women, into private sector employment. But some working Saudi women say hiring private drivers to get them to and from work eats up much of their pay.

The decree is another breakthrough for Saudi’s female population, who were only given the right to vote in 2015.

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Iceland Enforces Equal Pay For Men And Women

It’s the 21st century and women’s rights are finally becoming a thing of the present. With startups like Xinca employing single mothers and Saudi Arabia getting with the times, things are looking up. Kicking the new year off with an even greater win for the female workforce is Iceland. The Nordic country is deeming it illegal to pay women less than men.

“Holding women back holds our economy back. Tackling gender inequality and discrimination is good for business and for all of us,” … said [Sam Smethers, who campaigns for women’s rights as CEO of the Fawcett Society.]

The law will apply to companies employing more than 25 staffers at a time. Of course, bonuses aren’t out of the question — but they are rewarded only to top performers. Women’s rights campaigners have naturally taken their approval to social media.

Tennis player Billie Jean King added: “Iceland again leading in the equality movement. A new female Prime Minister, and a Parliament where nearly half of its members are women. Equal representation benefits everyone!”

Currently on top of closing gender gaps, it’s no surprise that Iceland is pushing the limits for women. After all, they do run the world (at least according to Beyonce).

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Female Stars Fight Workplace Assault With Defense Fund

As the years go by, gender divides grow smaller. Because of society’s increasingly progressive attitudes, conservative countries are eliminating segregation. Beauty queens are breaking norms. Struggling moms are making a living. Still, harassment in the workplace is frequent — but not if Hollywood’s female stars can help it. Hundreds of big names have launched a legal defense fund worth $13 million to fight sexual misconduct.

“Harassment too often persists because perpetrators and employers never face any consequences,” said an open letter from 300 women in film, TV, and theater. “This is often because survivors, particularly those working in low-wage industries, don’t have the resources to fight back.”

The recent slew of accusations has encouraged women of all tiers to speak up about their assault. The initiative hopes to empower more, particularly those without a means to be vocal.

“If this group of women can’t fight for a model for other women who don’t have as much power and privilege, then who can?” [said executive producer Shonda] Rhimes.

Speaking out is one thing — having the resources to do so is another. If blockbuster bombshells are willing to provide that, why stop them?

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Saudi Arabian Cinemas To Welcome Women

Lifting decades-long bans on women driving and entering sports stadiums, Saudi Arabia is taking steps in the right direction. Easing up on more restrictions, the conservative kingdom is now allowing women to enjoy cinemas. 2,000 screens for the first time in 35 years to be exact.

“This marks a watershed moment in the development of the cultural economy in the kingdom. Opening cinemas will act as a catalyst for economic growth and diversification.” [said culture minister Awwad Alawwad.]

While the news is blowing citizens away, the Saudi government still has to consider whether or not to censor films. Segregation is also an issue that remains up in the air, as the change could be too sudden.

“It should be done very gradually. This is a new era for Saudi and a new step for us. This will show the world that we also have an artistic side. We have to keep progressing.”

In an era of social reform, Saudi Arabia can’t afford any mistakes. After all, freedom is a tricky thing.

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Saudi Women Earn Rights To Enter Sports Stadiums

After centuries of oppression, women are finally rising above injustices. While some are campaigning for body positivity and breast education, others are just now experiencing more basic rights. Following the lift on the driving ban on women, Saudi Arabia continues to get in with the times. The country is now allowing women to enjoy sports stadiums with men, albeit in the family section.

These “family” sections are for women who are out on their own or who are accompanied by a male relative.

The renovations will reflect an enormous success, considering women are subject to seating arrangements even in restaurants and cafes. Family accommodation will take place in stadiums across Riyadh, Jiddah, and Dammam. Still, there is a long way to go for Saudi women.

Most women in Saudi Arabia cover their hair and face with a veil and all women are required to wear an abaya, a loose black dress, in public.

Progress in places like Saudi Arabia have been slow but steady. Hopefully, in the near future, differences between men and women will only be biological.

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Free The Tatas For A Cause

If you have been taking in your daily dose of tabloid drama, you’d know that braless celebrities are often a major point of conversation. Whether it’s Kendall Jenner or Britney Spears, the same sentiment remains–cover it up! While I don’t necessarily prefer to bare it all in public, I don’t always find myself scrambling back up to my apartment when I forget I’m not wearing a bra on the way to run a quick errand. Robyn and Michelle Lyle, masterminds behind the TaTa Top, don’t seem to think bras are necessary either.

The bikini top… made it look like the wearer was walking around topless, even though they weren’t.

“From the very beginning, we knew we wanted to use a sense of humor to shed light on some serious issues while simultaneously raising funds and awareness for two areas we are extremely passionate about: breast cancer awareness and women’s rights.”

TaTa Tops doesn’t only speak boldly, it forwards a sum of $5 on a rotating basis to a variety of groups that focus on research and breast education.

Robyn and Michelle wanted to do something that challenged the status quo and would draw attention to the sexism women face in America.

Will you bare it all for boobies?

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