Re:Gender works to end gender inequity and discrimination against girls and women by exposing root causes and advancing research-informed action. Working with multiple sectors and disciplines, we are shaping a world that demands fairness across difference.
The Accounting MOVE Project is produced by strategic communication firm Wilson-Taylor Associates, Inc., in partnership with the American Society of Women Accountants (ASWA) and the American Woman’s Society of Certified Public Accountants (AWSCPA). The report finds that over half of today's accounting graduates are women and that firms are going to have to adapt to the new face of the profession.
From the report:
2011 Key Findings and Recommendations
Millennials want to invest in their careers at firms — on their own terms.
Male millennials expect women to be business leaders and change agents.
Women millennials expect male peers to be equitably included in all development and work-life programs
Women have made incremental gains at the top level.
Business development programs should be customized for all professional employees, including new associates.
Business development programs should pay for themselves — right away.
Build on Transparency
Open, clear reporting about the progress of a firm's women builds credibility.
The “self deselection” dynamic is disarmed by open communication.
Millennials expect honest dialogue about all MOVE topics, including compensation structures.
Small is Strong
Women expect to gain partner-track skills more quickly at regional and local firms.
Local and small regional firms should use association-sponsored programs as the nucleus for women's initiatives and business development programs.
Some of the most powerful advancement and retention tools cost nothing.
About 6.6 million people were receiving antiretroviral therapy in low- and middle-income countries at the end of 2010, a nearly 22-fold increase since 2001, according to a new report AIDS at 30: Nations at the crossroads, released today by the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS).
A record 1.4 million people started lifesaving treatment in 2010—more than any year before. According to the report, at least 420 000 children were receiving antiretroviral therapy at the end of 2010, a more than 50% increase since 2008, when 275 000 children were on treatment.
According to the report, the global rate of new HIV infections declined by nearly 25% between 2001 and 2009. In India, the rate of new HIV infections fell by more than 50% and in South Africa by more than 35%; both countries have the largest number of people living with HIV on their continents.
The report found that in the third decade of the epidemic, people were starting to adopt safer sexual behaviors, reflecting the impact of HIV prevention and awareness efforts. However, there are still important gaps. Young men are more likely to be informed about HIV prevention than young women. Recent Demographic Health Surveys found that an estimated 74% of young men know that condoms are effective in preventing HIV infection, compared to just 49% of young women.
In recent years, there has been significant progress in preventing new HIV infections among children as increasing numbers of pregnant women living with HIV have gained access to antiretroviral prophylaxis during pregnancy, delivery and breastfeeding. The number of children newly infected with HIV in 2009 was 26% lower than in 2001.
According to the latest estimates from UNAIDS, 34 million [30.9 million–36.9 million] people were living with HIV at the end of 2010 and nearly 30 million [25 million–33 million] have died from AIDS-related causes since AIDS was first reported 30 years ago.
Despite expanded access to antiretroviral therapy, a major treatment gap remains. At the end of 2010, 9 million people who were eligible for treatment did not have access. Treatment access for children is lower than for adults—only 28% of eligible children were receiving antiretroviral therapy in 2009, compared to 36% coverage for people of all ages.
While the rate of new HIV infections has declined globally, the total number of HIV infections remains high, at about 7000 per day. The global reduction in the rate of new HIV infections hides regional variations. According to the report, above-average declines in new HIV infections were recorded in sub-Saharan Africa and in South-East Asia, while Latin America and the Caribbean experienced more modest reductions of less than 25%. There has been an increase in the rate of new HIV infections in Eastern Europe and in the Middle East and North Africa.
In virtually all countries, HIV prevalence among populations at increased risk of HIV infection—men who have sex with men, people who inject drugs, sex workers and their clients, and transgender people—is higher than among other populations. Access to HIV prevention and treatment for populations at higher risk of infection is generally lower due to punitive and discriminatory laws, and stigma and discrimination. As of April 2011, 79 countries, territories and areas criminalize consensual same-sex relations; 116 countries, territories and areas criminalize some aspect of sex work; and 32 countries have laws that allow for the death penalty for drug-related offences.
According to the report, gender inequalities remain a major barrier to effective HIV responses. HIV is the leading cause of death among women of reproductive age, and more than a quarter (26%) of all new global HIV infections are among young women aged 15-24.
Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS)
In an article published in the June 2011 issue of the American Sociological Review, researchers report that that unwed mothers face poorer health at midlife than do women who have children after marriage.
From the press release:
Researchers found that women who had their first child outside of marriage described their health as poorer at age 40 than did other moms.
About 40 percent of all births in the United States now occur to unmarried women, compared to less than 10 percent in 1960, Williams said. That suggests there will soon be a population boom in the United States of single mothers suffering middle-aged health problems.
Moreover, the study suggests that later marriage does not generally help reverse the negative health consequences of having a first birth outside of marriage. This calls into question the value of government efforts to promote marriage, among low-income, single mothers, at least in terms of their consequences for these women’s health.
In one analysis, Williams and her co-authors used a subset of data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth on 3,391 women and a second analysis involved data on 1,150 women. By 2008, they had data on marriages and other unions for a 29-year period, and measures of health and well-being taken when the women were 40.
In general, the results showed that unwed mothers reported poorer health at age 40 than did other mothers. But there were several notable differences between racial and ethnic groups.
Most notably, Hispanic women who had a first child outside marriage did not have the same negative health consequences at age 40 that white and black women did. The researchers suspect that it has to do with the fact that when Hispanic women have a child out of wedlock, it is more likely to occur in a long-term cohabiting relationship that resembles marriage.
Hispanic single mothers may also be a part of larger and more close-knit family networks than single moms from other racial and ethnic groups, which can provide support that protects their health and helps them cope.
It was beyond the scope of this study to determine why unwed mothers in general had poorer health than others. But other research suggests it may be related to the high levels of stress and the poor economic conditions faced by single moms.
Despite high rates of nonmarital childbearing in the United States, little is known about the health of women who have nonmarital births. We use data from the NLSY79 to examine differences in age 40 self-assessed health between women who had a premarital birth and those whose first birth occurred within marriage. We then differentiate women with a premarital first birth according to their subsequent union histories and estimate the effect of marrying or cohabiting versus remaining never-married on midlife self-assessed health. We pay particular attention to the paternity status of a mother’s partner and the stability of marital unions. To partially address selection bias, we employ multivariate propensity score techniques. Results suggest that premarital childbearing is negatively associated with midlife health for white and black women, but not for Hispanic women. We find no evidence that the negative health consequences of nonmarital childbearing are mitigated by either marriage or cohabitation for black women. For other women, only enduring marriage to the child’s biological father is associated with better health than remaining unpartnered.
University of Colorado at Boulder researchers who conducted a chemical analysis of australopithecine fossils ranging between roughly 1.8 million and 2.2 million years old from two South African caves found that teeth thought to belong to females are more likely to have incorporated minerals from a distant region during formation than those from males. This leads researchers to believe that the females joined new social groups once they reached maturity.
From Nature News:
Fossilized teeth of early human ancestors bear signs that females left their families when they came of age, whereas males stayed close to home.
A chemical analysis of australopithecine fossils ranging between roughly 1.8 million and 2.2 million years old from two South African caves finds that teeth thought to belong to females are more likely to have incorporated minerals from a distant region during formation than those from males.
The shape of ancient human families has been the subject of speculation, based mainly on differences in the relative size of male and female fossils, and the behavioural patterns of our primate relatives. Female chimpanzees, for instance, typically leave their social group once they hit maturity. Among gorilla groups, which are dominated by one large male 'silverback', both males and females tend to strike out.
Modern humans, who are influenced by relatively recent cultural practices such as marriage and property ownership, are difficult to compare to our early ancestors, lead author Sandi Copeland of the University of Colorado at Boulder said in a press briefing.
According to an opinion poll published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, more than eight out of 10 women say new guidelines recommending against routine breast cancer screening of women under 50 are "unsafe."
More than eight out of 10 women say new guidelines recommending against routine breast cancer screening of women under 50 are "unsafe," according to an opinion poll.
The controversy over screening mammography flared up in late 2009, when a government-funded group of independent experts decided to change its recommendations.
Instead of advising annual mammograms in all women age 40 and above, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) said women shouldn't routinely get screened until they hit 50, and those between 50 and 74 should only have mammograms every two years.
What the group didn't say, though, is that no women under 50 should be screened -- it left that up to the individual woman and her doctor to decide, based on her personal risk factors and preferences.
To assess womens' attitudes toward 2009 USPSTF mammography screening guideline changes, and evaluate the role of media in shaping opinions.
247 women, aged 39-49, presenting for annual exams randomized to read one of two articles, and survey completion.
88% overestimated lifetime Breast cancer (BrCa) risk. 89% want yearly mammograms in forties. 86% felt changes were ‘unsafe’, and even if doctor-recommended, 85% would not delay screening until age 50. Those with a friend/relative with BrCa were more likely to want annual mammography in their forties (92% vs 77% P=0.001), and feel changes unsafe (92% vs 69% P=<0.0001). Participants with previous false-positive mammograms were less likely to accept doctor-recommended screening delay until age 50 (8% vs 20%) P=0.01.
Women overestimate BrCa risk. Skepticism of new mammogram guidelines exists, and is increased by exposure to negative media. Those with prior false-positive mammograms are less likely to accept changes.
Researchers in Georgia and South Carolina report that new mothers who take a longer maternity leave are more likely to begin and continue breastfeeding their babies.
Objective: We investigated the effect of maternity leave length and time of first return to work on breastfeeding.
Methods: Data were from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study–Birth Cohort. Restricting our sample to singletons whose biological mothers were the respondents at the 9-month interview and worked in the 12 months before delivery (N = 6150), we classified the length of total maternity leave (weeks) as 1 to 6, 7 to 12, ≥13, and did not take; paid maternity leave (weeks) as 0, 1 to 6, ≥7, and did not take; and time of return to work postpartum (weeks) as 1 to 6, 7 to 12, ≥13, and not yet returned. Analyses included χ2 tests and multiple logistic regressions.
Results: In our study population, 69.4% initiated breastfeeding with positive variation by both total and paid maternity leave length, and time of return to work. In adjusted analyses, neither total nor paid maternity leave length had any impact on breastfeeding initiation or duration. Compared with those returning to work within 1 to 6 weeks, women who had not yet returned to work had a greater odds of initiating breastfeeding (odds ratio [OR]: 1.46 [1.08–1.97]; risk ratios [RR]: 1.13 [1.03–1.22]), continuing any breastfeeding beyond 6 months (OR: 1.41 [0.87–2.27]; RR: 1.25 [0.91–1.61]), and predominant breastfeeding beyond 3 months (OR: 2.01 [1.06–3.80]; RR: 1.70 [1.05–2.53]). Women who returned to work at or after 13 weeks postpartum had higher odds of predominantly breastfeeding beyond 3 months (OR: 2.54 [1.51–4.27]; RR: 1.99 [1.38–2.69]).
Conclusion: If new mothers delay their time of return to work, then duration of breastfeeding among US mothers may lengthen.
According to the National Science Foundation (NSF), African-Americans earn only 1 percent of Ph.D.’s in physics. This blog post discusses a May 2011 NSF workshop focused on collaboration in the sciences with the express purpose of increasing the participation of under represented minorities in the STEM fields. Of note is a Master's-to-Ph.D. Bridge Program partnership between Fisk, a historically black university (HBU) and Vanderbilt.
The New York Times discovered that many American universities are using deceptive tactics to appear more to be offering women's sports to more participants than they actually are. This includes offering spots to women who do not actually compete or reporting male players who practice with the team as female players.
From the article:
As women have grown to 57 percent of American colleges’ enrollment, athletic programs have increasingly struggled to field a proportional number of female athletes. And instead of pouring money into new women’s teams or trimming the rosters of prized football teams, many colleges are turning to a sleight of hand known as roster management. According to a review of public records from more than 20 colleges and universities by The New York Times, and an analysis of federal participation statistics from all 345 institutions in N.C.A.A. Division I — the highest level of college sports — many are padding women’s team rosters with underqualified, even unwitting, athletes. They are counting male practice players as women. And they are trimming the rosters of men’s teams.
OBJECTIVE: To estimate abortion rates among subpopulations of women in 2008, assess changes in subpopulation abortion rates since 2000, and estimate the lifetime incidence of abortion.
METHODS: We combined secondary data from several sources, including the 2008 Abortion Patient Survey, the Current Population Surveys for 2008 and 2009, and the 2006–2008 National Survey of Family Growth, to estimate abortion rates by subgroup and lifetime incidence of abortion for U.S. women of reproductive age.
RESULTS: The abortion rate declined 8.0% between 2000 and 2008, from 21.3 abortions per 1,000 women aged 15–44 to 19.6 per 1,000. Decreases in abortion were experienced by most subgroups of women. One notable exception was poor women; this group accounted for 42.4% of abortions in 2008, and their abortion rate increased 17.5% between 2000 and 2008 from 44.4 to 52.2 abortions per 1,000. In addition to poor women, abortion rates were highest for women who were cohabiting (52.0 per 1,000), aged 20–24 (39.9 per 1,000), or non-Hispanic African American (40.2 per 1,000). If the 2008 abortion rate prevails, 30.0% of women will have an abortion by age 45.
CONCLUSION: Abortion is becoming increasingly concentrated among poor women, and restrictions on abortion disproportionately affect this population.
The rate of abortion among American women has dropped overall, but not among the poorest women, according to study published in the journal Obstetrics & Gynecology by the Guttmacher Institute.
Between 2000 and 2008, abortions among American women aged 15 to 44 fell 8%, reaching a low of 19.6 abortions per 1,000 women. The decline applied to most groups: notably, the abortion rate declined 18% among African American women over that time period and 22% among teens aged 15 to 17.
However, women living in profound poverty were the one exception. Women whose incomes fell below the federal poverty level ($10,830 for a single woman with no children) accounted for 42% of all abortions in 2008. Between 2000 and 2008, the abortion rate among the lowest-income women climbed from 44 to 53 abortions per 1,000 women — an increase of 18% overall.
A study in the journal Birth shows that, while home births are still relatively rare in the United States, they increased 20% between 2004 and 2008.
From the Los Angeles Times:
Home births in the United States increased 20% from 2004 to 2008, reaching their highest level since 1990, according to a study published online Friday in the journal Birth.
The study's authors, led by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention statistician Marian F. MacDorman, examined trends in home births by looking at birth certificate data from all 50 states. These provided information about maternal race and ethnicity, maternal age and marital status, whether infants were born prematurely, birth weight, place of birth and who attended the delivery.
While home births had declined gradually between 1990 and 2004, the team found, they began creeping back up in 2004. That year, there were 23,150 home births in the United States -- about 0.56% of total births. In 2008, there were 28,357 home births in the country, or 0.67% of total births.
The increase appears to be driven primarily by an increased interest among Caucasian women in giving birth at home, the authors wrote. In 2004, about 0.80% of births among Caucasian women were home births. In 2008, 1.02% were. The researchers calculated that approximately 94% of the increase in overall percentage of home births between 2004 and 2008 was because of this increase. According to the study, the percentage of home births among white women is three to six times higher than for any other race or ethnic group.
Also of interest: percentages of home births were generally higher in western states, and lower in the Southeast. In 2008, Montana had the highest percentage of home births -- 2.18%. Vermont was next at 1.96%, and Oregon was third at 1.91%. In all, 16 states had more than 1% home births, while 18 states had less than 0.50%.
The percentage of home births delivered by certified midwives or certified nurse-midwives increased from 15.8% in 2004 to 19.2% in 2008. The percentage of home births delivered by other midwives fell from 43.9% in 2004 to 42% in 2008. The vast majority of midwife-assisted births were planned home deliveries. The percentage of home births delivered by physicians -- most of which are unplanned home births, the authors noted -- fell from 8.7% in 2004 to 5.4% in 2008.
Background: After a gradual decline from 1990 to 2004, the percentage of births occurring at home increased from 2004 to 2008 in the United States. The objective of this report was to examine the recent increase in home births and the factors associated with this increase from 2004 to 2008.
Methods: United States birth certificate data on home births were analyzed by maternal demographic and medical characteristics.
Results: In 2008, there were 28,357 home births in the United States. From 2004 to 2008, the percentage of births occurring at home increased by 20 percent from 0.56 percent to 0.67 percent of United States births. This rise was largely driven by a 28 percent increase in the percentage of home births for non-Hispanic white women, for whom more than 1 percent of births occur at home. At the same time, the risk profile for home births has been lowered, with substantial drops in the percentage of home births of infants who are born preterm or at low birthweight, and declines in the percentage of home births that occur to teen and unmarried mothers. Twenty-seven states had statistically significant increases in the percentage of home births from 2004 to 2008; only four states had declines.
Conclusion: The 20 percent increase in United States home births from 2004 to 2008 is a notable development that will be of interest to practitioners and policymakers. (BIRTH 38:3 September 2011)