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On Balance

On Balance

23 October 2015

Kia ora koutou, welcome to On Balance - the National Council of Women of New Zealand's weekly round-up of the latest gender equality news, research and events. Please share it with anyone you think might be interested and let them know they can subscribe here.

News from around the country:

• The government set up a taskforce to look into pay equity issues, which could lead to a change to the current law. Minister for Workplace Relations and Safety Michael Woodhouse said unions and employers had agreed to a working group to establish principles for dealing with pay equity claims

• Tony Veitch showed a total lack of self-awareness in a Facebook rantlashing out at those who brought us his history of domestic abuse. Here is what he should have said instead and a blog post on the issue

• Justice Minister Amy Adams defended the legal aid system against accusations that it discriminates against victims of domestic violencefollowing claims that a single adult must earn less than $22,000 a year to apply for legal aid

Sexism in science is rife because we are sexist about science, says Nicola Gaston President of the New Zealand Association of Scientists in her new book Why Science is Sexist

• Lee Suckling on why we all need sexual consent lessons

• Anti-prison queer and trans activist group No Pride in Prisons held a ‘call-in’ day which asked people across the country to call and email prominent members of the Department of Corrections, regarding its treatment of incarcerated trans people

Latest research:

• The most common job for NZ men in 2013 was general manager, while the most common for NZ women was sales assistant, according to the Statistics NZ Women at work: 1991 – 2003 report. The report, released on World Statistics Day, highlights trends in occupational segregation

Feminism makes the world safer and richer, according to a new report from the United Nations. The exhaustive report speaks to the importance of women’s empowerment in generating peace and prosperity

• The lives of women and girls around the world have improved in several areas over the last 20 years, according to a United Nations report. It found that women are marrying later, living longer and healthier lives and are better educated. Nevertheless, it also stated they continue to be victims of gender based discrimination and violence, and millions remain illiterate

• While men are theoretically attracted to the idea of dating an intelligent woman, in reality they prefer dating a woman who is less intelligent than them, suggests a US study

• Viewers of TV show Law & Order are more informed about consent than viewers of CSI, found a study from the Journal of Health Communications

International news:

• In a bid for gender equality, Sweden opened its first rape centre specifically for male victims. The new clinic is understood to be the first emergency department devoted solely to male rape victims

• Newly elected Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has said half his cabinet ministers will be women

• The British government issued every school in the country with a list of sexist words now banned from all classrooms and playgrounds

• On how to call out your sexist mates – “Step up. Spread the word. If your bromance can't transcend misogyny, it's time to call it quits"

• The topic of equal pay for actors and actresses took centre stage at Elle magazine's Women in Hollywood awards with comedian Amy Schumer noting "If we raise minimum wage, most minimum wage workers are women ... that'll help

• Actress Zendaya called out a magazine for promoting unrealistic beauty standards through the use of excessive photoshop on a photo of her

• Professional violinist Mia Matsumiya collected every single inappropriate, upsetting and creepy message she has received over the last ten years and is now publishing them on her Instagram in an attempt to expose the dark reality of what it's like to be a woman — particularly a woman of colour — online

• A company that makes absorbent menstrual underwear has beenprevented from having its ads on NYC subways. One of the reasons given for this is that children would see the word "period" and ask their parents what it means

• Chinese women dominate the list of the world’s richest women

• Forbes released its list of highest paid comedians and every single person on it is a man

• A suicidal mother of two who says her life is in a "diabolical" state ispleading with the Royal Women's Hospital in Melbourne to terminate her 26-week-old fetus. The woman said a range of factors had eroded her ability to cope with having the baby, who has been tested for and has no abnormalities

• North Korean authorities have issued a directive banning medical professionals from performing birth control procedures and abortions in an effort to reverse the isolated country’s falling birth rate

• Indian women are pushing back against college campus curfews arguing they are an invasion of privacy, restricting their freedom and mobility

• Oscar Pistorius, the Paralympic gold medallist who was found guilty of culpable homicide in the killing of his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, left prison for house arrest this week after serving about one year of his five-year sentence

• Actor Daniel Craig spoke candidly about his James Bond character, calling him a misogynist


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