Topic

gender equality

49 petitions

Started 1 week ago

Petition to Mike Hoffman, Michael Surbaugh, Randall L. Stephenson

Include Venturers in the Order of the Arrow

On Wednesday October 11, the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) made the fateful decision to finally allow girls to participate in its program.  In the fall of 2018, girls starting at age 5 may join Cub Scout packs.  Along with this, a program for older girls is expected to be ready by the fall of 2019.  This is great news for a lot of people, but for some it has come just a little too late.  My name is Kyrie Garlic.  I am eighteen years old and a member of Venture Crew 1849 from the Arrowhead District of the Rio Grande Council in Texas.  Venturing is a co-ed branch of Boy Scouts for individuals aged 14-20 with an interest in the outdoors and high adventure.  I grew up in Scouting, getting involved with Venturing as soon as I was old enough.  I have visited all four national BSA high adventure bases--Philmont Scout Ranch, Northern Tier, Florida Sea Base, and the Summit Bechtel Reserve--; I have staffed three NYLT courses, two as Assistant Senior Patrol Leaders and one as the Senior Patrol Leader; I have staffed at my council's summer camp for three consecutive summers, serving as the Pool Director and Staff Senior Patrol Leader this past summer; I was Secretary, Vice President of Program, and President of my crew and led them in countless service efforts at my council's events, teaching a myriad of things (such as Native American Sign Language at the Order of the Arrow's 2017 pow-wow).  The people in my council know my name and I am starting to get involved with Scouting on an area level as well.  But I cannot be in the Order of the Arrow because I am not a Boy Scout.  And I will never be one.  Because the Boy Scouts of America is for youths aged 12 to 18.  I turned eighteen on February 4, 2017 and the decision to let girls into Boy Scouts came eight months too late. Because Boy Scouts was gender-exclusive up to this fall, most girls interested in getting involved with the program were drawn to Venturing.  A lot of the girls in Venturing are in it because of their interest in Boy Scouts, and this new change to allow girls into Boy Scouts is great, but it doesn't do anything for those Venturing youths between 18 and 20.  They are already past the age cap so therefore the new ruling does not afford them any new opportunities.  They are still Venturers however, and Venturing offers most of the same experiences as Boy Scouts: Venturers can attend national high adventure bases, they can staff Boy Scout camps, they can attend trainings such as the National Youth Leadership Training (NYLT) and National Advanced Youth Leadership Experience (NAYLE).  There is, however, one door that has remained shut to Venturers, and that is entrance into the Order of the Arrow: the honor society of the Boy Scouts of America.  Since girls are already being admitted into Boy Scouts, it makes sense that girls will slowly be integrated into the Order as time passes.  However, that does not account for the girls in Venturing for whom this decision has come too late. That is why I am proposing Venturers should be allowed into the Order of the Arrow as well, along with those involved with the more mainstream Scouting program.  The age range for the Order of the Arrow is 12 to 20, which coincidentally lines up with that of Venturing.  A youth in Venturing is still a youth in the Order of the Arrow, meaning those girls who are not young enough to fully participate in Boy Scouts should still be able to join the Order of the Arrow through Venturing.  The most recent statement on Venturers in the Order of the Arrow is that Venturing is a separate program from Boy Scouts and Venturers should therefore make a separate honor society.  However, this is not a fair justification because Venturers are Boy Scouts.  Their uniform says "Venturing, BSA" above the right chest pocket.  They say the Boy Scout Oath and Law at every meeting.  They are held to the same standards as Boy Scouts.  They serve in leadership roles within their councils like Boy Scouts. oa-bsa.org states, "As Scouting’s National Honor Society, our purpose is to: - Recognize those who best exemplify the Scout Oath and Law in their daily lives and through that recognition cause others to conduct themselves in a way that warrants similar recognition. - Promote camping, responsible outdoor adventure, and environmental stewardship as essential components of every Scout’s experience, in the unit, year-round, and in summer camp. - Develop leaders with the willingness, character, spirit and ability to advance the activities of their units, our Brotherhood, Scouting, and ultimately our nation. - Crystallize the Scout habit of helpfulness into a life purpose of leadership in cheerful service to others." Even if Venturers are not technically classified as Boy Scouts, they are classified as Scouts.  So if the Order of the Arrow is going to truly call itself "Scouting's National Honor Society", it should not discriminate against a certain branch of Scouts, especially one that is popular mainly because up until recently it was the only way girls could get involved with Boy Scouts.  All four bullet points in the purpose statement can easily apply to Venturers who can "exemplify the Scout Oath and Law in their daily lives" like any Boy Scout.  Venturers are just as much "leaders with the willingness, character, spirit and ability to advance the activities of their units, our Brotherhood, Scouting, and ultimately our nation" as their Boy Scout counterparts. By signing this petition, you are demonstrating to the Boy Scouts of America and the Order of the Arrow that Venturers are just as much Scouts as Boy Scouts and that they deserve the equal opportunity to participate in its honor society.

Kyrie Garlic
21 supporters
Update posted 1 week ago

Petition to David White, Ilyanne Morden Kichaven, Jeffrey Bennett, Gabrielle Carteris

Convene an actionable committee to address gender inequities in Hollywood

We are actors.  We are proud members of SAG-AFTRA. The support the Union has offered has been invaluable. The unity we share as SAG-AFTRA actors is an extraordinary honor.  The Union has done wondrous work to ensure proper working conditions and wages for the average working actor. But as female actors, We’ve come to understand some very unfortunate realities about the business to which we’ve dedicated ourselves, and some regrettable shortcomings of the Union that is supposed to represent us. While women represent 41% of SAG-AFTRA membership, an estimated 70% of working and aspiring actors and more than half the global population, we were only the protagonists of 12% of the 100 top grossing films last year. Recent reports show that women are underrepresented at an 8 to 1 ratio for film and television leads. Only 11% of females depicted in top grossing films of 2014 were black and moviegoers were only slightly more likely to see a Latina or Asian female character--only 4% and 3%, respectively--than a female character from another planet. Roughly a third of female speaking characters were shown in sexually revealing attire or were (at least) partially naked while more than half the women portraying characters aged 13-20 (teenagers) were shown with some nudity. These reports are not only an indication of discriminatory hiring practices in Hollywood, but of a great disservice to our culture and the world’s audiences. The industry is marked by innumerable instances of discrimination, harassment, and sexual assault, especially in a context of sexual content on screen. These abuses are unacceptable in any context.  The fierce competition female actors face and a gross imbalance of power nurtures the industry’s proclivity to stigmatize players for having a voice. A key principle of the Union is that our unity prevents such devaluations. We hope that all actors will be able to walk in to any employment situation with confidence that their rights have been firmly established, supported and normalized by our Union without fear they may be individually targeted, slandered or precluded from future work in any way if they stand for what would otherwise be clear and basic human, moral and legal rights. Despite the Union’s documented policies, the industry’s silent acceptance of these injustices has had critical, lasting effects on our members both personally and professionally.  We must find a way to alter our current culture to go beyond the small print statements and effectively promote an atmosphere and enforcement of a zero tolerance policy.  We cannot continue to stand by. We stand behind our Union and need our Union to stand for us.  We need SAG-AFTRA to stand and to step up. It is time for women’s interests to be addressed and their voices to be heard. Inequalities, discrimination, harassment and even sexual assault are still part of our experience in the industry. We call for the support of our Union to form an actionable, open gender committee to address the issues facing female performers.    We feel the Union is in the best position to: - unify its members with a unique ability to reach, convene, support and mobilize its participating members; - institute policies within the entertainment industry that protect women and our rights; - be a voice for those who have been silenced by a culture of sexual harassment and discrimination and provide those victims with substantive resources and support- move beyond a statement of "zero tolerance" for sexual harassment, assault and discrimination to enforcement and a culture of zero tolerance.- provide resources for family planning and maternity leave; - and take a clear stance on the stark income disparity between genders. The role of women in media has long been a controversial subject. It is time that the women of our Union be empowered regarding the use of their image, and to have roles that more richly and responsibly portray the lives and roles of women in our society. We believe that the unification of the Union’s female (and interested male and other gender) members around these issues will be a strong response. We would be served by the opportunity to convene around these issues with the support and protection of our Union to hold an open and transparent dialogue on the issues facing female performers.     There currently exists a “women’s committee” bullet pointed on the SAG-AFTRA website, but there is a lack of clarity to its activities, no contacts, no support available for interest in its activities and no initiatives or programs seem to exist around these issues.  For example, our Union provides for pensions, healthcare and even emergency relief, but offers no resources to women entering motherhood. As creative professionals we bring to life any culture we can envision. We can surely find a way to produce media that affects positive culture shifts, rather than reflecting and perpetuating oppressive gender roles and exploitive gender norms.     Our members have shown extraordinary resilience and perseverance in the face of extreme inequities, but it is time these conditions be addressed.  SAG-AFTRA is a strong voice for performers. If our Union supports a voice for gender equality, we should convene a committee to discuss gender issues and spark an initiative for equality. Thank you for your support of your female members.

M Hampton
715 supporters
Update posted 2 weeks ago

Petition to Mark Rothbart, Dominique Crisden, David Collingnon

Blink Fitness, Make Your Lockers Safe for Trans and Gender Non-Conforming Members

Transgender and gender non-conforming people have been target of continuous attacks on their rights to use gender segregated bathrooms and lockers. These limitations not only affect students and the youth but extends to adulthood and beyond the school environment. Many transgender and gender non-conforming people consider spaces such as gyms to be vital for their development and health. Yet, the simple task of walking into the "women's" or "men's" lockers can be panicking, especially when those spaces don't provide safety and protection. The simple task of undressing becomes stressful and forces us to either hide in a corner or in the stall in order to avoid being harassed or physically assaulted.  Blink Fitness claims to be for everyone, this is why we are asking them to put that mission into practice. How Can Blink Fitness Be for Everyone? 1. Create All-Gender Inclusive Signs. Many companies already understand that gender must be inclusive and are taking real actions to support transgender and gender non-conforming employees. By putting these signs up, people will be aware that the space they share welcomes different gender expressions and identities and that harassment will not be tolerated. 2. Create a Gender Neutral Locker. Not everyone identifies as male or female and they shouldn't be forced to use a space that puts them in those confinements. Many trans and gender non-conforming people who may identify with male or female would simply prefer a gender neutral space to avoid harassment. 3. Train Your Crew on Gender Inclusivity. The Blink Crew needs to be trained on gender inclusivity and be a crew that is there to support us. My experience talking to Blink employees, experiencing that blank stare, and being in communication with management shows me that Blink has no gender inclusivity policy and training. Blink Fitness' goal should be to turn their beautiful mission into action.Blink Fitness, be for everyone! Blink will set the precedent for all other gyms to follow what a gender-inclusive space really looks like!

Raffi Ciavatta
117 supporters