Women's Rights

5,155 petitions

Update posted 4 hours ago

Petition to Illinois Courts Commission, David P. Sterba, Paula A. Gomora, Frank B. Castiglione, Kent A. Delgado, Elaine B. Johnson, Sean Nash, Ruby Smith, Michael J. Deno, Anne M. Burke, STATE OF ILLINOIS, Justice Mary Jane Theis, Justice Mary Ellen Coghlan, James DeAno, Erika Harold, Jennifer Johnson, John Kim, John O’Reilly, Kathleen L. Pine, Kurt Reitz, Trisha Rich, Judge Diane Shelley, Martin Sinclair, Judge Franklin U. Valderrama, Judge Alicia Washington, Jerry Larkin, Karen Litscher Johnson, Darin LaHood, J.B. Pritzker, Barbara Flynn Currie, Kimberly A. Lightford, Bobby L. Rush, Richard J. Durbin, United States Supreme Court, Tammy Duckworth, Mike Quigley, Danny K. Davis, Cheri Bustos, Robin Kelly, Adam Kinzinger, Mike Bost, Bill Foster, Rodney Davis, Jan Schakowsky, Raja Krishnamoorthi, Michael J. Madigan, Michael J. Zalewski, Iris Y. Martinez, Lauren Underwood, Randy Hultgren, Sean Casten, Steve Stadelman, Antonio Muñoz, Jesús "Chuy" García, Patricia Van Pelt, Bradley Schneider, Kwame Raoul, David J Robinson, Gary Farha

Remove Judge Adrian from Office for Abuse of Judicial Discretion and Power

July 12, 2022: Robert Adrian is running for retention of his seat on the bench in the Eighth Circuit Court of Illinois, but he has lost the public's trust. Adrian currently has one open complaint filed by the Judicial Inquiry Board. We want Robert Adrian to be removed from office for acting against the Illinois Code of Judicial Conduct and for abusing his position of authority. Please read our story and updates for more information. Memorial Day weekend 2021, a 16 year old girl went to a party. She swam in her underwear. She drank too much, became ill, and passed out on a couch by herself. When she woke up, her face was being pushed into a pillow and a person was sexually assaulting her in the form of vaginal penetration.  She immediately left the scene and woke up friends who were sleeping in a nearby room. They left the house where they had been sleeping and reported the rape to a trusted adult the next morning. The perpetrator of this sexual assault, Drew S. Clinton, who has ties to both the Detroit, Michigan, area and also Quincy, Illinois, area was 18 years old at the time. He was arrested and confirmed that it was true he had penetrated the victim sexually. He was charged with three counts of criminal sexual assault, to which he pled "not guilty," with his defense being he had believed the encounter to be consensual.  At the conclusion of a Bench Trial, on October 15, 2021, Drew S. Clinton was found guilty on one count of criminal sexual assault for digitally penetrating the victim. He was found not guilty of the other two counts.   Judge Robert "Bob" Adrian was the judge who ruled Drew S. Clinton is guilty of criminal sexual assault. However, on January 3, 2022, this very same Judge Adrian reversed his own ruling and declared the defendant was not guilty. In addition, Judge Adrian made a number of intensely gross remarks concerning this case, the victim and her family, and women in general.  These are some of the remarks Judge Adrian made that have been released to the public: "This happened when this teenager … was two weeks past 18 years old. He has no prior record, none whatsoever. By law, the court is supposed to sentence this young man to the Department of Corrections. This court will not do that. That is not just. There is no way for what happened in this case that this teenager should go to the Department of Corrections. I will not do that.” “Mr. Clinton has served almost five months in the county jail, 148 days. For what happened in this case, that is plenty of punishment." "The court is going to reconsider its verdict and is going to find the defendant not guilty. Therefore, the defendant will be released from custody. Bond will be discharged." “This is what happens when parents do not exercise their parental responsibilities, when we have people, adults, having parties for teenagers, and they allow coeds and female people to swim in their underwear in their swimming pool. And, no, underwear is not the same as swimming suits. They allowed 16-year-olds to bring liquor to a party. They provided liquor to underage people, and you wonder how these things happen. Well, that’s how these things happen. The court is totally disgusted with that whole thing." These statements set the precedent that if a victim swims in their underwear and drinks alcohol, "these things happen." They say if a perpetrator is being caught for the first time, he believes they should get a mulligan. They say that Judge Adrian reversed his own ruling because he simply did not want to hand down the sentence that is associated with the crime to which he himself had already found the perpetrator guilty.  That is not how the law is to operate. Judge Adrian does not have the authority to change the law because he wants to. His job is to uphold and defend the law. There is no contest that Drew S. Clinton did sexually penetrate the victim. There was no contest that the victim was 16 years old at the time. By that simple fact alone, the victim was legally unable to offer sexual consent under any circumstances. Additionally, intoxicated persons are not able to offer consent. The sexual assault this young girl experienced is egregious in and of itself - but what Judge Adrian has said and done to not only this survivor but to ALL current and future sexual assault survivors and their loved ones is an irreconcilable deviation from both the spirit and the letter of the law. If he does not have faith and consistency in his own rulings, there is no reason for the public to respect his continuance in the position of power as an authority of the law.  For the reprehensible precedent Judge Adrian has set by not upholding the law, we ask that you censure, suspend, and/or remove him from his position in the Eighth Circuit Court in Illinois. FURTHER READINGS:Guilty, then not guilty: Judge causes tempest by changing verdict in criminal sexual assault case, delivering rebuke from bench – Muddy River News Statement on the Recent Sexual Assault Case in Judge Adrian’s Courtroom - Quanada Judge criticized for reversing teen’s sexual assault verdict, saying 148 days in jail is ‘plenty’ - Washington Post ‘In 15 minutes he destroyed all the healing’: Father blasts judge for ‘muzzling’ daughter by reversing rape verdict - The Independent  

The People
176,144 supporters
Update posted 1 day ago

Petition to Chief Fenn, President of the United States, Kamala Harris, Michelle Obama, Gavin Newsom, Donald J. Trump, Nancy Pelosi, California State Senate, Lena A. Gonzalez, Dianne Feinstein, Kirsten E. Gillibrand, Margaret Wood Hassan, Cindy Hyde-Smith, Amy Klobuchar

Stop discrimination at Orange County Fire Authority, reinstate Fire Pilot Desiree Horton

It’s 2022!  Why are the Chiefs and Human Resources in these fire departments continuing to allow a culture that is not inclusive?   When a woman or minority goes to the overhead or HR with a complaint about bullying they are told not to complain.  This “suck it up” culture is encouraged and accepted in the fire service.  The board of directors continues to turn a blind eye looking out for their own interests and political status.  The good old boys club culture needs to stop now! You can help.  Share this petition and reach out to your friends and your community and help us fight this cause.  The future of women who want to pursue these predominantly male dominated jobs will never change if the community doesn’t step in.   We are counting on your help.    Desiree Horton was the first full-time female helicopter pilot in the history of the Orange County Fire Authority (OCFA), an agency with only around 2% women firefighters. She was hired in 2019, and fired in 2020. In June of 2021, she filed a lawsuit against OCFA seeking her job back, and stating that her termination was sex discrimination. The lawsuit is ongoing. Horton has over 32 years of experience as a pilot, having worked as an aerial reporter for various Southern California news stations, and for over 17 years as an aerial firefighter. In 2019, she joined the OCFA, working out of Station 41 at the Fullerton Airport. She thought it would be her dream job. According to the lawsuit filed in Orange County Superior Court, during Horton’s time at the OCFA, she was held to unfair and higher standards than her male counterparts, deprived of training opportunities offered to the male fire pilots, unfairly evaluated without proper training and often with little or no advance notice, lied to about the conditions of her passing probation, and forced to work in a hostile environment in which she was ignored, undermined, disrespected, disparaged, and made to feel as though she was incompetent. The lawsuit states, “the OCFA failed Ms. Horton after her one-year probationary period and without the required one-year evaluation flight, wrongfully claiming her performance was ‘sub standard’ and that she was essentially untrainable.” The Observer reached out to OCFA for their side of the story, but a spokesperson said they were unable to comment on ongoing litigation. Horton, her lawyers, and other advocates held a virtual press conference back in June, in which they explained the case. “It was such an honor and a privilege to serve Orange County as a first responder, but OCFA didn’t see it that way,” Horton said. “I was set up to fail and I was never given the opportunity to succeed. It was clear to me that women weren’t wanted at OCFA.” Lauren Andrade, a fire captain at OCFA, supports Horton in her fight to get her job back and to challenge the culture of the organization. “I wish I could sit here today and say this is the first I’d heard of a probationary employee being discriminated against for their sex or race, but unfortunately that’s far from the truth,” Andrade said at the press conference. “OCFA has a pattern of discrimination against underrepresented groups. Either they’re weeded out in the hiring process, or they’re fired during their probationary year.” “17 of our 77 fire stations currently don’t have women’s restrooms or shower facilities to accommodate a dual gender workforce,” Andrade said. “We have no women chief officers, and up until Desiree we had no women assigned full time to our Air Operations division.” Jenna Rangel, an attorney representing Horton, said that although Horton had more experience than her male colleagues, “because there was no objective metrics that could be applied equally to all fire pilots, the OCFA was able to hold Desiree to higher standards than the men, and to terminate her by wrongfully claiming her performance was sub-standard.” “People have asked me why I’m doing this. The answer is simple—I want my job back. Let me fly,” Horton said. “And I want the OCFA to be a changed department, one in which women and underrepresented groups are given the fair shake we deserve.” Fire pilots like Desiree are tasked with transporting firefighters to the front lines, aerial firefighting with precise water drops while hovering at low levels above the blaze, and engaging in search and rescue missions. Friends and supporters of Horton gathered outside the Orange County Fire Authority Station 41 at the Fullerton Airport on August 28, 2021 to protest her firing by OCFA.  Even more supporters showed up on September 23, 2021 OCFA Board of Trustees meeting at the Regional Fire Operations and Training Center Board Room 1 Fire Authority Road in Irvine and spoke publicly before the board of directors.  You can watch multiple videos from two board meetings where the public has expressed their concerns to OCFA.    Most recent board meeting with public speakers regarding OCFA and their treatment of women. Help reinstate veteran Fire Pilot Desiree Horton who was wrongfully terminated by Orange County Fire Authority.    Orange County Fire Authority continues to waste taxpayers millions in unnecessary litigation due to a toxic and discriminatory culture that continues to be tolerated by the department and it’s leaders. OCFA has a history of discrimination lawsuits.   FROM SUPERIOR COURT OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA- “Being hired into the OCFA Air Operations division was a dream come true for Ms. Horton. After applying and being denied the opportunity countless times, Ms. Horton finally got her chance when the OCFA’s new Fire Chief, Brian Fennessy, decided it was time for the OCFA to have its first female fire pilot. Others at OCFA, however, did not agree and made sure Ms. Horton’s opportunity was short-lived. During Ms. Horton’s time at the OCFA, she was unfairly and discriminatorily scrutinized by the male pilots, crew chiefs, and helicopter technicians, held to unfair and/or higher standards than her male counterparts, deprived of training opportunities offered to the male fire pilots, unfairly evaluated without proper training and often with little or no advance notice, lied to about the conditions of her passing probation, and forced to work in a hostile environment in which Ms. Horton was ignored, undermined, disrespected, disparaged, and made to feel as though she was incompetent, all because Ms. Horton was a woman in a place believed to be a man’s world. And despite her nearly 30 years as a helicopter pilot, over 9,000 hours of helicopter flight time, 16 years of aerial firefighting experience (more than any of her male colleagues at the OCFA), and glowing reviews from her former employers and firefighting colleagues, the OCFA failed Ms.Horton after her one-year probationary period and without the required one-year evaluation flight, wrongfully claiming her performance was “sub-standard” and that she was essentially untrainable. In doing so, the OCFA robbed Ms. Horton of her dream job, caused her to suffer a loss of professional reputation, and sent a message that women are not wanted at the OCFA and need not apply. But Ms. Horton is a trailblazer and, as she has done her entire career, is fighting back for the equal treatment she and other female pilots deserve.” Along with signing this petition if you would like to do more you are encouraged to write the board of directors at OCFA and tell them how you feel and ask them was anyone paying attention last year? The whole world watched as Americans gathered, protested, even burned cities to the ground in the name of systemic discrimination. Yet here we are a year later, and Orange County Fire Authority is spending an immense amount of taxpayer dollars to defend systemic discrimination in the workplace. Do the taxpayers know? Discrimination in the workplace, or anyplace for that matter, is not something that should be taken lightly. Every person in this country should be treated equally and have an equal shot at employment regardless of gender, race, or religion. Desiree Horton deserves to be reinstated at Orange County Fire Authority. Which side of the history books will you be on?  

Sondra Esqueda
2,762 supporters
Update posted 2 days ago

Petition to

Make LDS Clergy Mandatory Reporters

The Associated Press recently released an article about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints – also known as the Mormon Church – and the concerning practices behind their abuse helpline. As an active member of the church and a survivor of sexual abuse, I can tell you that it’s time for something to change. Across the country, teachers and therapists are mandatory reporters, meaning that they must report to the police when someone confesses to abusing another person. However, this is not always the case for clergy. In some states like Utah, members of the clergy are not required to report when someone confesses to abuse – even child sexual abuse like what happened to me. Because of this, abusers are allowed to continue hurting children, sometimes for years. Instead, clergy are instructed to call a helpline which is staffed by church lawyers. The Associated Press found many instances where the abuse was not reported, and was instead covered up by church lawyers and leaders.  I was one of those children as a 5 year old sleeping in her bed when a teenager having a sleepover with my brother came into my room and molested me. A few years later he told his bishop and neither me, my parents, nor the authorities were contacted. 18 years after the abuse, he came to my parents house and told me what had happened. His clergy at this time told him to do so in order to fully repent. I am grateful for that clergy who urged him to be open with me, but my heart aches for all the years lost when I could have been working through this trauma. And I have to wonder whether he has hurt anyone else, and if better church policies could have stopped it. We also request Section 32.4.5, Section38.6.2.1, and Section in the LDSChurch General Handbook be updated tonote that every single instance of child abusemust be immediately reported (directly bythe Bishop) to both local police and ChildProtective Services without regard tostate/regional/national ecclesiasticalreporting laws and without any considerationwhatsoever to the perpetrator's desire orcapacity to repent. Church policy changes often, and I believe this is one that must be reevaluated. I am an active member of this faith, and I believe we must do better to protect our children. If church policy requires clergy to be mandated reporters then we can help protect children from any future abuse and hold abusers accountable for their behaviors.

Courtney Poulos
40,511 supporters
Update posted 6 days ago

Petition to Thomas P. Murt, Tom Wolf, Fox News, James McGovern, Patrick J. Toomey, Pennsylvania State House, Robert P. Casey, Jr.

Truth to come out in a thorough investigation regarding the death of Kalha Kozerski

On September 21, 2021 my sister passed away at 30 years old. She suffered from a Domestic Violence relationship for 8 years. Afraid everyday for what and when the next beating would be. Being shot down and made to feel like she wasn’t worthy. Being controlled day and night. Being woken up from a sound sleep just to be beat for not doing the dishes properly. She was afraid to leave, she was afraid for what’s he’d do if she ever walked away. She did all she could to protect her family from the horrors her husband brought. DCF removed her children in 2019 as a result of DV and placed them with my mother, (grandmother), and myself, (aunt), in hopes of further protecting the children. My sisters way of getting her husband as far away from the kids was to move to Kane, Pennsylvania. Worcester police department has records of domestic violence. Hospitals have records. Therapist have records. Department of children and families have records.  The day she died, Kane police allowed her husband to pack the house not leaving anything behind except a couple dresses of hers and leave back to Massachusetts that same morning claiming “he has no relation to the town”. Our family looked into this, there are messages, pictures of bruises and bite marks ,the acts of violence I had witnessed and neighbors stating fighting was happening and everything went quiet and he exited the house. Her husband was a known drug addict and  DV abuser in Massachusetts and now Pennsylvania. Kane police states it’s not the families right to know what’s happened and calling it a suicide because the husband states it was. They’ve refused to talk with our family regarding anything and stated “once a thief  always a thief, just doesn’t mean that thief took it”. Kane police also refused to work with Worcester Ma Police Department and obtain the records on her husband, again stating “we would work with them but we doubt they’d do anything” Kane police is just as much at fault for this nightmare as is her husband for not further looking into this.  The family is asking for a thorough investigation to be done because nothing adds up or makes sense. We hired an attorney for this purpose and our family is willing to file a civil lawsuit against the town if necessary. My sister had a visit coming up with her two beautiful children 3 days after her death and she’d never miss a visit.   If you truly love your spouse, would you leave after “finding” them dead? Would you just fill out a written statement and leave? Coroner Michael Cahill of Kane, Pennsylvania stated when questioned by family about probable cause of death and why she may have been abandoned by her husband he stated “ I can not disclose any of that information to the family and everyone mourns differently and he probably wanted to be home in Massachusetts with his family.” She leaves behind her legacy with Gavin 6, who witnessed on several occasions the violence that was brought upon her and a victim to his fathers abuse. And her daughter, Avah 2. The family is reaching out to you hoping that we can get some unanswered questions answered. Thank you. 

Carmela Kozerski
3,521 supporters