Saturday, December 4, 2010

Fourth Night: Radcliffe Union of Students

Tonight, we will feature the Radcliffe Union of Students, Harvard's student group dedicated to women's rights.

RUS says about itself:
The Radcliffe Union of Students (RUS) is a student group at Harvard University that strives to be a voice for women undergraduates and feminists of every gender. We are focused on women's issues on campus, and we seek to strengthen women's community and to improve the experiences of women undergraduates at Harvard.

RUS exists at the forefront of an array of student groups concerned with the wellbeing of women, operating as both as the predominant representative of women undergraduate voices and as a leader in feminist activism on campus.

Facts about women's rights:
  • Almost one billion people in the world are illiterate, 70% of whom are female. Those who cannot read or write will find it much more difficult to know their rights and how to protect them.

  • For every year beyond fourth grade that girls go to school, child deaths drop 10% and wages rise 20%.

  • Wars today affect civilians most, since they are civil wars, guerrilla actions and ethnic disputes over territory or government. 3 out of 4 fatalities of war are women and children.

  • 25% of women experience sexual abuse by an intimate partner in their lifetime. 79 countries have no legislation against domestic violence.

  • Over the last decade, access to education has increased globally for girls at all levels. The number of girls per 100 boys has increased from 91 to 96 girls in elementary school and from 88 to 95 girls in secondary school.

  • Among women aged between 15 and 44, acts of violence cause more death and disability than cancer, malaria, traffic accidents and war combined.

  • Worldwide, only about 24 percent of the people interviewed, heard, seen or read about in mainstream broadcast and print news are female.

And children's rights:
  • 200,000 to 300,000 children are currently serving as soldiers for both rebel groups and government forces in armed conflicts.

  • Infant mortality in the world’s least developed countries has dropped by over 50% in the past 20 years.

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