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Global Roundup: Uganda Anti-Gay Bill is Back; Mexico’s First Female Presidential Candidate from a Major Party

Jessica Mack

Starting this week, we will be bringing you a weekly roundup of global sexual and reproductive health and justice news!

Welcome to our new Weekly Global Reproductive Justice Roundup! Each week, reporter Jessica Mack will summarize reproductive and sexual health and justice news from around the world.  We will still report in depth on some of these stories, but we want to make sure you get a sense of the rest and the best.

Uganda Anti-Homosexuality Bill is Back
Just one year after the brutal murder of Ugandan gay rights activist David Kato, the infamous Anti-Homosexuality Bill is back on the table in Uganda’s Parliament. It will go through a first, then second reading, before it is debated. However, prior debate reports on the bill, which was introduced in 2009 amid global outcry, may be used to accelerate this process. If the bill is passed by Parliament, the President cannot veto it and would sentence anyone convicted of homosexuality to life imprisonment and someone convicted of “aggravated homosexuality” to death. Via NTV and Warren Throckmorton.

First Female Presidential Nominee in Mexico a Win?

Josefina Vasquez Mota, an economist and former education secretary, is the first woman in Mexico to run for president on a major party ticket, for the National Action Party. Vasquez Mota has said she does not support reproductive rights and will not make feminist issues such as wage parity and anti-discrimination a part of her campaign or administration. Critics say she is running on traditional feminine images of caretaker, housewife, and consoler, and her victory would not be a win for women. Via New York Times.

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India is Deadliest Place for a Girl

According to a new report from the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA), India has the worst gender differential for child mortality in the world, with Indian girls ages 1-5 75% more likely to die than boys of the same age. Experts attribute the disproportionate rate to wide failure to support adequate food and nutrition, healthcare, and emotional  wellbeing of girls. At the same time, however, recent reports suggest that sex-selective abortion rates are declining. Via Times of India.

Cambodian Garment Workers Demand Better Pay and Treatment

The first-ever People’s Tribunal on Minimum Living Wage and Working Conditions was held this week, organized by union coalitions in Cambodia. The garment industry is 90% of Cambodia’s exports, and the workers are nearly all women. Producing clothes for giants like H&M and Urban Outfitters, workers are  underpaid and recent mass fainting highlighted poor working conditions. The Tribunal is a singular space for workers’ voices and concerns, who will lobby for better conditions. Via Global Voices.

The GOP’s Global War on Women

The remaining GOP candidates have expressed their opposition to birth control access and funding to varying degrees, and Mitt Romney has even pledged to eliminate federal family planning funding. If domestic family planning programs aren’t safe, Michelle Goldberg argues, then global family planning programs certainly are not either. Cuts to global family planning would be devastating to women worldwide, especially in countries like Liberia, where USAID provides nearly the entirety of its birth control supplies. Via The Daily Beast.

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