Symposium on Interpersonal Violence: The Impact on Women’s Health

In recognition of Women’s Health Week, the Department of OBGYN in coordination with the Women’s Health Research Group are offering a symposium on May 21 12-4:30pm for all hospital departments and staff on Interpersonal Violence: The Impact on Women’s Health. Please see the attached brochure for details.

This 4 hour event will start at 12 pm with the WHRI Lunch Forum with speaker Marlita White, LCSW, from the Office of Violence Prevention and Behavioral Health at Chicago Department of Public Health, speaking on “The Impact of Trauma on the Health of Women and Girls in Chicago.”

This will be followed at 1pm by the symposium and panel discussion led by Traci Kurtzer MD, Medical Director for Trauma Informed Care and Education, speaking on Intimate Partner Violence and practical tips on providing Trauma Informed Care for clinicians. Julia Geynisman-Tan MD, Director of the ERASE Trafficking Clinic, will speak on Human Trafficking and Gender Based Violence and Jaclyn Rodriguez BSN, SANE Coordinator of the Illinois Attorney General’s Office will speak about Updates to Laws in Illinois and the positive impact for Sexual Assault survivors. The symposium fee is $20 and will provide 3 CME credits for those who apply.

This will be an educational afternoon with practical information that can be utilized for improving our understanding and care for all patients dealing with past and current trauma. It will provide useful information and guidance for both inpatient and outpatient health care staff. Target audience: all specialties, physicians, nurses, PT/OT/RT, social workers and other clinical staff, non-clinical staff, and medical students.

If you have any questions about the event, please contact Symposium course director, Traci Kurtzer, or Lunch Forum coordinator, Nicole Woitowich.

Women’s Health Research Forum Luncheon
(free and open to the public)
12:00 to 1:00 p.m.
“The Impact of Trauma on the Health of
Women and Girls in Chicago”

Click here to Register for the Luncheon
1 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™

Symposium on Interpersonal Violence and
Women’s Health: Intimate Partner Violence,
Sexual Assault, and Human Trafficking
1:00 to 4:30 p.m.

Click here to Register for the Symposium
Fee: $20.00
3 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™

What Do You Think? – The Debate to Classify Honor Killings as a Federal Offense in Canada

Canada is currently debating whether or not to add Honor Killings to the Federal Criminal Code. Some say this is a milestone, others say that murder is already illegal and a special classification would unfairly target Muslims and immigrants.

Take a look at the articles below and tell us what you think.

The Truth About Honor Killings – Salon.com

Muslim women’s group opposes addition of honour killings to Criminal Code – Calgary Herald

Membership Meeting: Bylaw Vote & Teen Violence Forum

Tuesday, May 25th
7:00-8:30pm
Center on Halsted- John Baran Senior Center
3656 N. Halsted St.
Everyone is invited to join Chicago NOW for an informative, interactive, and inspiring evening addressing teen  violence.
Chicago Police Officer Erin Carlquist and Yesenia Maldonado, Director of Programs from Between Friends,

will lead the panel in discussing the specific steps and actions our community can take to right this wrong.


We will also raffle off a pair of tickets to see *
Jewel* at an exclusive private concert on Friday, June 4th!

Meet the Chicago NOW board, share your ideas and concerns, and take an active part in your community.
We will review and vote on newly revised
chapter bylaws.


Fearing conservative social policies, womens’ groups start offensive against Brady

By Adrian G. Uribarri
March 09, 2010

If state Sen. Bill Brady’s race against Gov. Pat Quinn comes anywhere as close as his campaign against Kirk Dillard, then one thing is for sure: It won’t be womens’ groups that push him over the edge.

Nearly eight months before the general election, advocates for abortion rights and equal-pay legislation have formally begun denouncing Brady, the Republican nominee for governor.

In a press conference this morning, leaders from several progressive organizations in the state portrayed Brady as a religiously motivated and extremely socially conservative candidate, unfit to serve women who want control over their reproductive and financial health.

“I literally shuddered at the notion of him in the governor’s office,” said Beth Kanter of Planned Parenthood Illinois Action. “Illinois women cannot afford Bill Brady in the governor’s office.”

Michelle Staeger, at the Chicago chapter of the National Organization for Women, said his opposition to legislation that requires equal pay for women as for men in similar positions shows he is out of touch with reality.

“He’s simply ignoring the fact that there is still discrimination, based on gender, in the workplace,” Staeger said. She called his voting record in the Illinois General Assembly, where he has served more than 16 years, “troubling” and “alarming, in fact.”

Jaime Elich, Brady’s campaign spokeswoman, did not respond to repeated requests for comment.

Today’s unequivocal statements mark a first wave of resistance to Brady’s campaign outside of Quinn’s own camp. Last week, the governor released a statement in response to Brady’s nomination that clearly targeted his social positions.

“The Republican nominee is from the extreme right wing of the party and far from the mainstream of Illinois voters,” Quinn campaign spokeswoman Mica Matsoff wrote.

She cited his past opposition to the Family Medical Leave Act, equal-pay legislation and raising the minimum wage, as well as his support for legislation that would ban abortions, even for women who were raped or victims of incest.

The womens’ advocates echoed those sentiments today, strongly endorsing Quinn as their ally on those very issues.

Terry Cosgrove, president of the Personal Political Action Committee, pressed reporters to ask Brady what kind of penalties he would impose on women who illegally sought abortions or emergency contraceptives.

He joked that building prisons for them would not be his idea of a jobs plan.

“His extremist agenda has to be rejected by the people of Illinois,” Cosgrove said.

Lynda DeLaforgue, co-chair of Citizen Action Illinois, said Brady ranked second to last in an analysis of state legislators who ranked “poor” in their positions on social issues, as compared to the consumer organization’s progressive agenda.

State Sen. Dave Syverson, the staunch Rockford conservative, was last on the list.

“Sen. Brady has time and again voted against the needs of average Illinois families,” DeLaforgue said. “Consumer issues are womens’ issues.”

Perhaps nothing illustrated that more clearly during today’s event than its setting, the downtown Chicago offices of Environmental Design International Inc.

Deborah Sawyer, head of the firm, said that being a woman — and a minority, in her case — is especially challenging in a nontraditional industry for women such as civil engineering. Among other things, her firm helps construction companies mitigate environmental impacts from their building projects.

“We need a supportive, women-friendly governor to succeed,” Sawyer said.

An Open Letter to Scott Lee Cohen

February 10, 2010

Dear Mr. Cohen,

Thank you for requesting a meeting with the Chicago Chapter of the National Organization for Women to discuss the future of your political career.  Chicago NOW has been a stalwart defender of the rights of women and girls since 1967.  We appreciate that you recognize that fact enough to reach out to us, however belatedly.  Your spokesman’s email said that the requested meeting is critical to further your “understanding of women’s issues.”  We know that the world of women’s issues can be vast and complex, but there are some basics that you will need to cover before moving forward.  First and foremost, violence is never the answer.

The facts on domestic violence are devastating.  In 2006 the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control published a fact sheet stating that “women experience about 4.8 million intimate partner-related physical assaults and rapes” every year.  According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, 1,181 women were murdered by an intimate partner in 2005. That’s an average of three women every day. (Citations at NOW.org)

Mr. Cohen, we will consider meeting with you, but before any plans are made, we need you to make some changes to show the people of Illinois that you are really sincere.

  1. File the paperwork necessary to formally step down.
  2. Publicly acknowledge the allegations made against you by the women in your life.  If you have harmed these women, do not make excuses; simply state what you have done.
  3. Apologize
  4. Pay back any child support that is due.
  5. Commit to ending violence against women and girls in Illinois.

We hope you can understand why the allegations against you have caused such an upheaval.  We need leaders who can lead by example.  Perhaps we will meet face to face once this checklist is complete.  Until then, good luck with your endeavors.  We urge you to take this time to make yourself into a new person.

Best Regards,

Chicago Chapter of the National Organization for Women