Declare October 11th official Chicago Day of the Girl
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Since 2012 when the United Nations first declared October 11 as International Day of the Girl, Girls Like Me Project, Inc. has produced the Chicago Day of the Girl. To date, our annual observation has connected more than 600 Chicagoland girls to this global girls empowerment movement.
Over the years various elected officials have supported our efforts with a proclamation/greeting for our program books. In fact, Congressman Danny K. Davis lead the charge to acknowledge GLMPI’s Day of the Girl efforts during the first session of the 114th Congress in 2015. All in all, these gestures have demonstrated to our girls in attendance that their livelihood and girlhood matters.
Now in 2019 in the midst of major transitions of power and shifts in narratives, where women are breaking barriers in this city and emerging as leaders for change, GLMPI believes it is an ideal time for a more pronounced local observance. This year’s International theme is “Girlforce: Unscripted and Unstoppable.”
As the first African-American woman to be elected as the Mayor of Chicago, what better time than now to declare October 11th as Chicago Day of the Girl. How appropriate to add this monumental feat amongst your legacy?
Moreover, this is an opportunity to connect legions more local girls to the global dialogue, celebration and advocacy for their collective success beyond the myriad of injustices they face including poverty, environmental, educational and health inequities; media stereotypes; violence and so many others.
- Based on the 2009 Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (YRBSS) which monitors six categories of priority health risk behaviors among youth, dating violence is a serious issue for teens. A staggering 18.5% of Chicago youth surveyed reported that they had been hit, slapped or physically hurt on purpose by a boyfriend or girlfriend. Rates are highest for African American girls, with 22.6% reporting that they had experienced dating violence. Overall, this is a significant increase from the 2007 data.
- A new report from The World Health Organization (WHO) landmark report, Preventing Suicide: A Global Imperative, reveals suicide kills more girls between the ages of 15 and 19 than any other cause—more than pregnancy, HIV/AIDS, road injury and diarrhoeal diseases.
- Violence and misogyny is tantamount in media influencing and consumed by youth, which includes an overwhelmingly large female population.
- FBI and Chicago Police have teamed up for a task force to investigate possible links between the deaths of more than 50 women in Chicago.
Despite these ugly facts and statistics, our girls are more than deserving of a day that celebrates their success beyond the myriad of injustices and advocates for their highest good.
On behalf of Girls Like Me Project, Inc. I am requesting that you declare October 11, as Chicago Day of the Girl.
You may visit the UN's website for more insight to International Day of the Girl. https://www.un.org/en/events/girlchild/
For more information on our local observance, visit http://www.chicagodayofthegirl.com/
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