Time for a break from COVID and a return to a discussion that was a big deal in the land before pandemics: Jeffrey Epstein, and the way he simply glided through high society as if there was nothing wrong with being a convicted sex offender. A new report from Harvard discussed in today’s Boston Globe tells of how Epstein “had his own office in a Harvard University department and visited there more than 40 times after he was released from jail in 2010 up until 2018.”
Epstein had key cards to enter the buildings at Harvard, helpfully provide by math professor Martin Nowak, and this allowed Epstein to host dinners and other meetings there with area political figures and academics. Epstein also used the office to meet with young women, described as being in their 20’s, who “acted as his assistants.”
I: An Opportunity for Connection and Transformation
Second wave feminism, building on the accomplishments of the first wave suffrage movement, proclaimed that gender equality and justice should be the ethic of every culture in the world. In the tragedy of Covid-19, many of us are quarantined at home with our spouses, partners, and families. What my husband, Harville, and I are doing at this time is distributing a process called Safe Conversations which fosters mutual respect and equality. We hope to bring as many people as possible into the community of Safe Conversation and offer it as an opportunity to transform our domestic relationships and help actualize this feminist vision.
For the first time in history of the world, the relational sciences are teachable due to advances in neurosciences in the 1990s. Safe Conversations allows anyone in a relationship to shift from judgement to curiosity, from conflict to connection, and from criticism to wonder.
The COVID-19 pandemic and current isolation at home of the majority of people across the globe has led domestic violence incidents to skyrocket. In Australia, Google reports a 75% increase in online searches for help with domestic violence. In China, the number of calls to helplines has tripled, according to the U.N., and here in the US, police departments and hotlines are reporting a 20%-35% increase in cases. Couple this data with the fact that many shelters nationwide are currently closed or not accepting new clients in order to protect the health and safety of staff and current residents, and the picture of this crisis quickly becomes much bleaker.
However, COVID-19 itself is not the problem. The number one reason survivors in the US stay in or go back to abusive situations is financial insecurity. The Center for Disease Control estimates that domestic violence will cost a female survivor almost $104,000 in medical bills, legal fees, property damages, and other related costs. This six-figure debt is exacerbated by the fact that economic abuse (which can take many forms such as not being allowed to work, having little or no access to cash, and being forced to take on debt through physical threats) occurs in 99% of domestic violence cases. Survivors are trapped in violence because it is overwhelmingly expensive to overcome both the cost of being harmed and the devastatingly intricate impact of being financially abused.
In Honor of Sexual Assault Awareness Month,SafeBAE (and partners*) Moves Annual Teen Summit on Sexual Assault and Consent Education Onlinefrom April 28-May 2nd
April 21, 2020 – SafeBAE, a survivor-founded, student-led national organization whose mission is to end sexual violence and teach healthy relationships among middle and high school students, is taking their originally scheduled school-based Virginia and Maine Summits online from April 28 through May 2nd, due to COVID-19 school closures. Every session is free and will be hosted over a secure Telehealth Zoom platform, with moderators and counselors overseeing all of the attendees. The Summit is being made possible by the commitment of our youth planning committees (comprised of 14-18 year olds) and partners from both of our original locations in Arlington, VA and Portland, ME, but is open to all.
This year’s signature series from the Women’s Philanthropy Institute (WPI) focuses on a vast area of study — gender and technology. This subject is just beginning to get explored, and for good reason — it turns out there are significant differences in how women use technology to conduct their philanthropy. There are also key spaces online where women network and build on their work in philanthropy, and those spaces are influencing the direction of philanthropy writ large.
Today, WPI is launching its Plugged In Podcast series, which will explore different aspects of how gender and technology influence philanthropy. Speakers today include:
-Asha Curran, CEO, #GivingTuesday -Elizabeth Gore, President, Alice -Beth Kanter, Author and nonprofit innovator -Walle Mafolasire, Founder, Givelify -Teresa Younger, CEO and President, Ms. Foundation for Women
Philanthropy Plugged In: Exploring new research on gender, technology and givingthrough WPI podcast series
On April 21, the Women’s Philanthropy Institute will launch our Women Give 2020 report along with the Philanthropy Plugged In podcast series dedicated to exploring technology, gender and giving. Also included in the release is a new video and other resources.
These themes are all the more relevant as people around the world are leveraging technology in new ways to reimagine community and stay connected.
Editor’s Note: The following is from Vijaya Gadde, Legal, Policy and Trust & Safety Lead at Twitter.
(March 24, 2020) All around the world, we’ve seen our service connecting people with the authoritative health information they need to protect themselves and their loved ones. That work can only be successful if people have access to the news and information they need.
Right now, every journalist is a COVID-19 journalist. From the stories of healthcare workers on the frontlines, to analysis of the real human and economic cost of the pandemic, reporters around the world are still writing, still exposing themselves to harm, still giving us the facts. Journalism is core to our service and we have a deep and enduring responsibility to protect that work. This week we’re contributing to two critical organizations that are working tirelessly to uphold the fundamental values of a free press during this pandemic.
Editor’s Note: This edition of our Feminist Giving IRL (in real life) series features Dr. Vicky Stergiopoulos, Clinician Scientist and Physician-in-Chief at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH), Canada’s largest mental health hospital and a global research leader. She is the clinical lead of CAMH womenmind, a new effort from CAMH to close the gender gap in mental health. She is also a Professor and Vice Chair Clinical and Innovation in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Toronto.
1. What do you wish you had known when you started out in your profession?
When corporations divert rivers, when governments displace communities, and when the constant human desire for “more” disrupts the safety of our environment, women and children are often the first to suffer. Access to clean water, a full belly, and a safe place to sleep at night are rights humans should have at birth.
What can we do when these natural rights are violated?
Global Greengrants Fund, also known as Greengrants, seeks to answer this question by taking action. By committing to a program based on participatory grantmaking, Greengrants connects under-served and under-funded communities with the resources and mentorship they need to fight for justice.
Editor’s Note: The following message is from Andrea Pactor, Associate Director, Women’s Philanthropy Institute, Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy.
Thank you for your patience as we wrestled with whether or not to move forward with Philanthropy Plugged In in light of the rapidly spreading COVID-19 situation. Yesterday, the Indiana University President made the decision to cancel the symposium easier. At Indiana University, as at several universities and businesses across the country, all travel outside the state is suspended through April 5 and we are discouraged from scheduling events with more than 100 attendees. Sad as we are not to see you in Chicago, we know, as one speaker mentioned, that this is the right thing to do.