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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, June 27, 2018

CONTACT
Delia Coleman, dcoleman@equalrights.org, 415-575-2396

 

On the Supreme Court’s Decision in Janus v. AFSCME

Ruling Will Hurt Workers, Especially Women of Color

 

The following is a statement from Noreen Farrell, Executive Director, Equal Rights Advocates on the Supreme Court’s decision in Janus v. AFSCME, in which the Court ruled 5-4 that public sector unions may not collect “fair share” fees from non-union workers who benefit from the union-negotiated contracts but are not dues-paying members.

“Today, the Supreme Court has once again decided to ignore justice and the needs of working women, particularly the large numbers of women of color who rely on the benefits and wages of unionized jobs. Justice Samuel Alito, a fierce opponent of union rights, authored the majority opinion. The decision to attack working people’s basic right to come together and fight for better wages and working conditions wrenches the clock back to a time of robber barons squeezing every drop of labor from their workers with impunity. But while a war is being waged against working families from the courts and by this Administration, we are resolved to keep fighting.

This decision is particularly devastating for women who work under union contracts. The labor movement and the best practices it has won for its members have been crucial to women’s improved economic status, our access to regular and good-quality healthcare, and our access to opportunities and promotion, especially in male-dominated fields. Median earnings are higher for women of color in unions compared to non-union workers. Hispanic women have the largest earning advantage when they’re in unions. Women in labor unions are also more likely to have health insurance provided by their employer or union. With their decision, the Court has given employers permission to slowly choke off this kind of benefit for working women and their families.

As a result, this decision is a back-door attempt at not only curbing the advantages labor unions bring to working and middle-class families; it is also a terrible attempt to halt the advancement of working women in our tracks.

Since our founding in 1974, Equal Rights Advocates has spearheaded work dedicated to achieving economic justice for women workers, particularly those facing the most egregious forms of sex discrimination and unjust working conditions compounded by other barriers to fair treatment and equal opportunity in the workplace.

We will not let this unjust decision stand, and we are in solidarity with labor unions across the country who are a bulwark of economic justice for all working people.”

 

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, June 27, 2018

 

CONTACTS
Equal Rights Advocates: Jess Eagle, 415.575.2380, jeagle@equalrights.org
Democracy Forward: Charisma Troiano, 202.701.1781, ctroiano@democracyforward.org

 

Legal and Advocacy Groups Demand Betsy DeVos Withdraw False Claims About Sexual Assault Cases

Trump Administration Violated Federal Law in Using Unsupported and Misleading Claims To Roll Back Title IX Protections for Student Survivors of Sexual Violence

Washington, DC — Today, Equal Rights Advocates and 12 other civil rights and legal advocacy groups petitioned the Department of Education (“DOE”) to retract and correct its misleading and unreliable 2017 “Dear Colleague Letter” which, along with an accompanying Question and Answer document, established the Trump Administration's discriminatory new Title IX policy. The groups seek corrections under the Information Quality Act (“IQA”), a data accuracy law that requires government agencies provide accurate, reliable, and unbiased information to the public, particularly when such information has a clear impact on public policy.

The 2017 “Dear Colleague Letter,” signed by Acting Assistant Secretary Candice Jackson, contains at least six incorrect and unsupported statements of fact. For example, it states, without proof, that under the prior Title IX guidance:

  • Many schools established procedures for resolving allegations that … are overwhelmingly stacked against the accused;
  • Many schools traditionally employed a higher clear-and-convincing evidence standard; and
  • Many schools established procedures for resolving allegations that lack the most basic elements of fairness and due process.

These factual assertions run counter to the available evidence, which may be why DOE did not cite any evidence to support them. “[T]he inaccurate information disseminated...incorrectly suggests that students who claim they have experienced sexual violence (primarily women and girls) are being given unfair advantages in comparison to their alleged perpetrators (primarily men and boys),” the groups state in their correction demand. “[The] prevention and redress of sexual harassment and violence in educational institutions is a serious issue, [but] the Department disrespects the issue, as well as the people who experience it, when it relies on and disseminates information that lack the basic attributes of quality."

The IQA demand letter was submitted on June 27, 2018. Under IQA guidelines, the Administration has 60 days to respond to the request for correction.

Along with Equal Rights Advocates, the other signatories to the letter include Democracy Forward, the National Center for Youth Law, SurvJustice, National Women’s Law Center, Victim Rights Law Center, End Rape on Campus, Futures Without Violence, Public Justice, Legal Voice, Know Your IX, a project of Advocates for Youth, American Association of University Women, and Legal Momentum, the Women’s Legal Defense and Education Fund.

SurvJustice, Equal Rights Advocates, and Victim Rights Law Center have an active lawsuit against DeVos and the DOE challenging the new Title IX guidance as an unlawful, discriminatory, and unconstitutional policy. The groups are represented by Democracy Forward, the National Center for Youth Law, and the National Women’s Law Center.

---  

Equal Rights Advocates (www.equalrights.org ) is a national civil rights organization fighting gender discrimination in workplaces and education through litigation, public policy and advocacy, and partnerships with workers and students.  

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Equal Rights Advocates honors and remembers our friend Madeline Mixer, a gender-equality pioneer who spent decades advocating and organizing for working women. Madeline, a passionate supporter of ERA throughout her life, passed away earlier this month.

Since the 1960s, Madeline advocated for non-traditional job training and placement for women. As the director of the Women’s Bureau District IX (San Francisco) of the U.S. Department of Labor, and long after her retirement, Madeline supported women who sought jobs in nontraditional blue-collar work, in fields typically dominated by men. She was an avowed feminist, and for a time during the Reagan administration, she lost her job because of it. (Feminism was a family trait; her mother, who lived to be 101, had been a suffragist.)

Madeline co-founded the nonprofit organization Tradeswomen Inc. in 1979. The organization is still active today. She also understood the importance of communication as a way for women to support each other and organize, founding Tradeswoman Magazine, which was published for nearly two decades, and a newsletter called “Pride and a Paycheck,” which is still published.

Long-time ERA supporter and tradeswomen advocate Molly Martin said this of Madeline in tribute:

“I think Madeline’s life goal was to make it possible for women to have access to jobs that could make them independent of men. Her own life experience as a divorced mother of a young child was the driving force behind her feminism. At the time women didn’t have so many options.”

Noreen Farrell, ERA Executive Director, agrees, and adds: “Madeline was a pioneer and also a wondrous historian of the movement. She energized a new movement of feminists with stories of the strides she made possible.”

Madeline Mixer’s legacy of advocacy to serve the cause of gender justice highlights the importance of collaboration and resilience. She will be missed by everyone in the ERA family.

 


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Join Equal Rights Advocates for our 44th annual Gala Luncheon June 6 in San Francisco.


On Wednesday, June 6, check-in starts at 11 am. The Gala Luncheon will begin promptly at 12 noon.

 

Hundreds of gender justice champions will gather in San Francisco to celebrate our collective power and everything we’ve accomplished together over the past year.


At work, at school, out on the streets, and in the halls of capitol buildings across the country, everyday women have shown extraordinary courage that has benefited us all. That deserves celebration!


You won’t want to miss this. Our 44th annual Gala Luncheon features keynote speaker Mónica Ramírez, and introducing Irma Herrera as emcee!

 

Reserve your spot now.

 


About Mónica Ramírez: ERA is thrilled to announce Mónica Ramírez as a Champion of Justice Honoree and this year's keynote speaker. As co-founder and President of the Alianza Nacional de Campesinas (National Farmworker Women's Alliance), Mónica has dedicated her entire career to ending gender-based violence in the workplace and achieving gender equity. She has served farmworker, Latina, and immigrant women as an organizer and advocate for more than two decades. She has also represented individuals as a civil rights and gender justice attorney since 2004. With a November 2017 letter published by TIME magazine, she helped spark the TIME'S UP movement.

 

About Irma Herrera: Irma Herrera is a social justice activista, writer, performer, and former Executive Director of Equal Rights Advocates for 15 years. During her 30-plus years as a public interest lawyer, Irma fought for the rights of Spanish-speaking migrant farm workers and poor minority children, among others. Her 2016 play “Why Would I Mispronounce My Own Name?” explores the cultural significance of names, and the parts of our identities we’re asked to give up for the sake of fitting in and getting along. A renowned writer, former investigative journalist, and professor of social justice law and education law, Irma’s distinctions include the Margaret Brent Women Lawyers of Achievement Award from the American Bar Association's Commission on Women in the Profession; National Person of Distinction by Santa Clara University School of Law; and California NOW's Safety, Health and Equal Opportunity (S.H.E.) Award for promoting educational opportunity.

 

Sponsor a Student Activist. Honor the courage of a local student activist or ERA client by sponsoring their seat at the event. These gender justice champions are on the frontlines of the fight against injustice in our schools and workplaces. Your donation will ensure they get the recognition they deserve!


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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, June 27, 2018

CONTACT
Delia Coleman, dcoleman@equalrights.org, 415-575-2396

 

On the Supreme Court’s Decision in Janus v. AFSCME

Ruling Will Hurt Workers, Especially Women of Color

 

The following is a statement from Noreen Farrell, Executive Director, Equal Rights Advocates on the Supreme Court’s decision in Janus v. AFSCME, in which the Court ruled 5-4 that public sector unions may not collect “fair share” fees from non-union workers who benefit from the union-negotiated contracts but are not dues-paying members.

“Today, the Supreme Court has once again decided to ignore justice and the needs of working women, particularly the large numbers of women of color who rely on the benefits and wages of unionized jobs. Justice Samuel Alito, a fierce opponent of union rights, authored the majority opinion. The decision to attack working people’s basic right to come together and fight for better wages and working conditions wrenches the clock back to a time of robber barons squeezing every drop of labor from their workers with impunity. But while a war is being waged against working families from the courts and by this Administration, we are resolved to keep fighting.

This decision is particularly devastating for women who work under union contracts. The labor movement and the best practices it has won for its members have been crucial to women’s improved economic status, our access to regular and good-quality healthcare, and our access to opportunities and promotion, especially in male-dominated fields. Median earnings are higher for women of color in unions compared to non-union workers. Hispanic women have the largest earning advantage when they’re in unions. Women in labor unions are also more likely to have health insurance provided by their employer or union. With their decision, the Court has given employers permission to slowly choke off this kind of benefit for working women and their families.

As a result, this decision is a back-door attempt at not only curbing the advantages labor unions bring to working and middle-class families; it is also a terrible attempt to halt the advancement of working women in our tracks.

Since our founding in 1974, Equal Rights Advocates has spearheaded work dedicated to achieving economic justice for women workers, particularly those facing the most egregious forms of sex discrimination and unjust working conditions compounded by other barriers to fair treatment and equal opportunity in the workplace.

We will not let this unjust decision stand, and we are in solidarity with labor unions across the country who are a bulwark of economic justice for all working people.”

 

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On the Supreme Court’s Decision in Janus v. AFSCME

June 27, 2018 | by

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Wednesday, June 27, 2018 CONTACT Delia Coleman, dcoleman@equalrights.org, 415-575-2396   On the Supreme Court’s Decision in Janus v. AFSCME Ruling Will Hurt Workers,...
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Legal and Advocacy Groups Demand DeVos Withdraw False Claims About Sexual Assault Cases

June 27, 2018 | by

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Wednesday, June 27, 2018   CONTACTS Equal Rights Advocates: Jess Eagle, 415.575.2380, jeagle@equalrights.org Democracy Forward: Charisma Troiano, 202.701.1781,...
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Remembering and Honoring Madeline Mixer

June 22, 2018 | by

  Equal Rights Advocates honors and remembers our friend Madeline Mixer, a gender-equality pioneer who spent decades advocating and organizing for working women. Madeline, a passionate supporter of...
read more

Don’t Miss Our Gala Luncheon with Mónica Ramírez and Irma Herrera

June 1, 2018 | by

Join Equal Rights Advocates for our 44th annual Gala Luncheon June 6 in San Francisco. On Wednesday, June 6, check-in starts at 11 am. The Gala Luncheon will begin promptly at 12 noon.   Hundreds of...
read more