Womens’ Health

Commitment to advocate for Women’s Health and Safety

Zonta International invites clubs and members to advocate locally and internationally for womens health by supporting safety, reproductive rights, the banning of female genital mutilation, and an end to period poverty and shaming.

Bills on Women’s Health

The bipartisan Preventing Maternal Deaths Reauthorization Act of 2023 (S. 2415 and H.R. 3838) would reauthorize federal support for state-based maternal mortality review committees, which review pregnancy-related deaths to identify causes and make recommendations to prevent future mortalities. The legislation would also require the CDC to work with the Health Resources and Services Administration to disseminate best practices to prevent maternal mortality to hospitals and other health care providers.

Take Action

What is the prevalence of FGM in the U.S.?

More detailed statistics on FGM are needed. In January 2016, in response to advocacy by Equality Now, Safe Hands for Girls, and other civil society partners, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) published a study on the number of women and girls in the U.S. who are at risk of or have been subjected to FGM. According to it, the number is estimated to be 513,000, more than three times higher than an earlier estimate based on 1990 data.

FGM State by State

Currently, there is anti-FGM legislation in only 40 states, meaning that 10 STATES HAVE YET TO CRIMINALIZE FGM. The majority of states that do have FGM legislation can strengthen their legislation to further protect the girls in their state  –AHA Foundation.

 

FGM by State - Ban FGM in the USA

What makes Strong FGM Legislation?

From EndFGMToday Leader Elizabeth Yore,
 
Here are the elements that strong legislation should include:

“Strong FGM bills include five components,” Yore said. 

  • “These include prosecution for a practitioner, medical or otherwise, who carries out FGM; 
  • prosecution for parents or guardians who allow children to be subjected to FGM; 
  • prosecution for those who aid in facilitating FGM; 
  • provisions against ‘vacation cutting,’ or transporting girls to other countries or states for mutilation purposes; and 
  • provisions for education and outreach purposes.

STOP FGM Act Passed in 2020

The Zonta USA Caucus supported the STOP FGM Act of 2020 and asked its advocates to contact their legislators to pass the law. Though the practice was already outlawed in the United States, the language needed to be tightened. On 5 January 2021, it became law; it will empower federal authorities to prosecute people who carry out or conspire to carry out female genital mutilation in the United States and increases the maximum prison sentence from five to 10 years.

Womens’ Health News and Updates

Roe v. Wade Overturned: Guttmacher Inst. Shares

Abortion Rights and Access in the Post-Roe Era The US abortion access landscape continues to [...]

Rape Kit Backlogs in the US States

Washington State has cleared its Rape Kit backlog. It took a fearless survivor who persisted, [...]

US Women’s Caucus at the UN Briefs

US Women’s Caucus at the UN has prepared several valuable briefs in preparation for CSW68 [...]

Voters overwhelmingly expressed support the Equal Rights Amendment –

– 7 in 10 voters support the ERA being placed in the Constitution, with a [...]

Working Together to Reduce Black Maternal Mortality

Most Pregnancy-Related Deaths are Preventable By the US CDC https://www.cdc.gov/healthequity/features/maternal-mortality/index.html Black women are three times [...]

Best, and Worst States for Women USA 2023

In order to determine how women are faring and where they can find the best [...]

North Dakota Golden Z Lauded for “Period Project” Event

From the The Student Newspaper of the University of Jamestown: Posted on March 24, 2023 [...]

Additional Women’s Health Resources

Heart Health

GoRedforWomen – All about women’s heart health.

Women Representation in Health Research

 

Female Genital Mutilation:

AHA Foundation (works on many issues)

EndFGM/C Network (US and International)

EndFGMToday

EqualityNow  (multiple issue group)