Women's Rights

575 petitions

Update posted 10 hours ago

Petition to Jerry Brown, California State Senate, California State House, California Governor

California Tampon Tax: WE WANT YOU OUT!

Each year, Californian menstruators are taxed over $20 MILLION just on tampons and pads because they are not considered necessities, yet Viagra and Rogaine do not have this sales tax. According to California law, menstrual products are deemed non-essential goods and taxed at 7.25%, thereby implying that menstrual hygiene is unnecessary -- a luxury. MENSTRUAL HYGIENE IS NOT A PRIVILEGE, IT IS A RIGHT. For the average consumer, this tax can become burdensome, as menstruators are already expected to pay an average of $7 a month on menstrual products, not including other menstrual care expenses. California has the nation’s highest poverty rate, with 14.3% of Californians lacking sufficient income for basic needs. It is almost guaranteed that half of this population menstruates, and the tampon tax only adds unwarranted pressure for these individuals. Menstrual products are essential, and menstruators will nevertheless buy them to maintain menstrual hygiene. It does not make sense that menstruators are being taxed for something that they have no choice but to buy. The Tampon Tax exists in 36 states and remains the only gender-specific tax that exists in the country. Our hope is to eliminate this tax one state at a time, which would be a huge step in achieving gender equality and opening up the conversation on menstrual hygiene. As fellow citizens, menstruators and non-menstruators alike, we have the responsibility to note injustice and act upon it. We cannot allow people to pay a luxury tax for a natural bodily function. We are calling on the Governor of California, Jerry Brown, to repeal the Tampon Tax, and we need your help to do so. Also, we are calling on Gavin Newsom, the Democratic Candidate for California Governor, to advocate for the same. Our goal is 100,000 signatures in 30 days, join us. Sign this petition, share it with your friends, and join the Menstrual Movement in creating change for millions of menstruators and demanding systemic change towards gender equality. ABOUT US PERIOD is the largest youth-run NGO in women’s health in the world. We provide and celebrate menstrual hygiene through service, education, and policy — through the global distribution of period products to those in need, and engagement of youth leadership through a nationwide network of campus chapters. In the last two years, we have addressed over 300,000 periods and have registered over 180 campus chapters at universities and high schools in the United States and abroad.    

PERIOD. The Menstrual Movement.
11,095 supporters
Update posted 15 hours ago

Petition to Charlie Baker, Robert A. DeLeo, Harriette Chandler, Governor's Office of Community Affairs

Ban Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting in Massachusetts

Our names are Aisha Yusuf, Hanna Stern, and Mariya Taher, and we each are pleading to the Massachusetts State Legislature to pass a law making it illegal for someone to carry out Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting/Circumcision (FGM/C) on young girls. FGM/C involves removing and damaging healthy and normal female genital tissue on girls, and can cause physical harm including pain, bleeding, shock, tetanus, genital sores, and cause long-lasting psychological harm including sexual disorders, fear of sexual intimacy, nightmares and post-traumatic stress disorder. Mariya - I was born in the United States and now live in Massachusetts, but at the age of seven, I was subjected to Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting in India. Friends and relatives of mine also living in the United States have undergone FGM/C both here in the United States or in India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Somalia, Australia, and many other countries in the world. Aisha- I got my circumcision when I was five. I know many women who also got it done. Personally, I know people in my community who talk about it as if it’s normal. I was aware of people practicing it behind closed doors but I also know that some people are looking for ways to keep the practice alive here in the States even though it might mean legal action is taken against them. I didn't know my home state, Massachusetts, had no laws against FGM/C until I met Mariya who works with many communities to protect girls against FGM/C. Hanna - I literally stumbled on the subject of female genital mutilation searching for a global health research topic online for a school project. I knew nothing about it and was concerned that others would find it uncomfortable and unrelatable. My teacher told me that was all the more reason to focus on FGM/C. It’s not a cultural issue; it’s not a third-world problem. FGM/C happens all over the world; it is happening in Massachusetts! Regardless of culture and tradition, and despite a lack of intent to cause injury, the end result is girls in MA are being violated and need our protection to safeguard them from FGM/C. Massachusetts is known for its progressive policies in terms of reproductive rights, anti-discrimination laws, and equality issues, yet our state still is in the minority of states that do not ban female genital mutilation or cutting. As FGM/C is nearly always carried out on minors, is a violation of the rights of children, and reflects deep-rooted inequality between the sexes that constitutes an extreme form of discrimination against women, we must protect girls from undergoing FGM/C. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, it is estimated that over half a million girls and women in the United States are at risk. Massachusetts ranks 12th in the nation for at-risk populations with an estimated 14,591 women and girls.  Since 2012, the Massachusetts Women’s Bar Association has over and over again tried to advocate for a state law criminalizing FGM/C. Yet, still to this day, no law has been put into place. The current bills, S.788, and H.2333, have been sent to committee for study and most likely will not move forward either. All three of us believe in the importance of education and community engagement to help create social change within communities and amongst groups where FGM/C might be happening. To that end, we each have organized and participated in community events to educate our friends and family members about the harms of FGM/C and why it should be abandoned. Yet, despite our efforts, FGM/C continues, often being touted as a religious or cultural practice that is needed to control women’s sexuality. In April 2018, a doctor in Michigan was charged with performing FGM/C on minor girls, highlighting yet again that FGM/C does affect women and girls living in the United States. The doctor claimed FGM/C was a religious requirement and that there were no harmful effects. We three believe that culture and religion should not be an excuse used to sanction harm to girls. We need a bill in Massachusetts that unequivocally reiterates that female genital mutilation/cutting is a form of violence. There are laws against domestic violence and sexual assault. We need a law against FGM/C as well. We three believe our state can do a better job of protecting girls in the Commonwealth by banning FGM/C. You can support us too by signing our petition demanding that legislators make passing a bill banning FGM/C high on their list of priorities. Let’s work together to take a stance against Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting!  ~ Aisha Yusuf, Hanna Stern, and Mariya Taher  

Mariya Taher
12,867 supporters
Update posted 3 days ago

Petition to Virginia State House, Virginia State Senate

Impeach Judge TJ Hauler for Giving a Sexual Abuser No Jail Time

Similar to the Brock Turner case, a convicted abuser may be getting off on simply registering as a sex offender for sexually assaulting a 14 year old girl on school property. Logan Osborn, a former high school wrestler in Virginia, was 18 when he was accused of “tying a belt around a 14-year-old girl's neck and hands and forcing her to perform a sex act in late April of 2017.” Osborn plead guilty to having “carnal knowledge” of a minor and was sentenced to 10 years in jail with eight years suspended — meaning he would have to serve two years. But last week his judge, Judge TJ Hauler, stayed the two-year term. Osborn will serve no jail time. This is because his lawyers claimed the girl consented, even though she was crying when it happened, was tied up, and is not of the age of consent in Virginia (where it happened). This isn’t the first time Osborn has been accused of sexual assault and a Clinical psychologist testified that he has a "moderately high risk" of reoffending. When I was this girls age, I was sexually assaulted in another high school just down the road. To see this happen again to someone so close to me is unbearable. So many victims go without justice against their abusers but through taking action, we can fix this. As we saw with the #MeToo movement and other sexual assault cases, this affects many of us as every 98 seconds, someone in America is sexually assaulted. This girl (14 years old!!) came forward immediately about her experience while it takes most of us much longer. She is strong and brave and deserves our support in her time of need. Please join me in calling for the impeachment of Judge TJ Hauler if he does not reinstate the original sentence. We need justice for this young girl and other sexual assault survivors. No one should have to watch their abuser get off with no punishment at all. Her pain is worth more than that. Thank you, Emily

Emily Jansen
1,722 supporters