Women Lawyers on Guard Action Network (WLGAN) is galvanized at the historic selection of Senator Kamala Harris for Vice President! Her selection is inspiring and a profoundly important milestone for all women, and especially women of color. Senator Harris will help unite and lead our country through these unprecedented times.
Kamala Harris was elected to the U.S. Senate from California in 2017. She is the second African American women and first South Asian American to serve in the U.S. Senate. She is a graduate of Howard University and the University of California Hastings College of Law and began her legal career as a district attorney and later the City Attorney of San Francisco. She was elected the Attorney General of California in 2010. [See a summary of her impressive life and career HERE]
WLGAN joins with sister national organizations – National Women’s Law Center, Planned Parenthood, Emily’s List, National Partnership for Women and Families, Supermajority, and TimesUp – in support of Senator Harris, and particularly to challenge the media (and all of us) to avoid the destructive stereotypes about women and people of color as they (and we) talk about her candidacy. HERE is a Washington Post article warning us to be ready for online misogyny. And HERE is a powerful letter from these six women’s organizations addressed to the media, calling on them to be mindful of these stereotypes and expecting to see better from the press.
As you talk about Senator Kamala Harris with your family, friends and colleagues, remember that WE HAVE HER BACK! And we hope you will as well.
WLG/WLGAN is all about turning outrage and anger into action. In the wake of another outrageous killing of a Black man, George Floyd, and the violation of the constitutional rights of peaceful protestors, we urge you to “Do Something.” Here are two resources:
First, HERE is a link to an Anti-Racist Resource Guide prepared by Victoria Alexander (her LinkedIn Page HERE). The guide is filled with ideas about broadening your understanding of, and ways to combat, racism. We share this with the obvious caveats that many other worthwhile organizations, projects and resources exist, and we encourage you to find them; also that you should check out any organization you are unfamiliar with, if you are interested in donating.
Second, the American Constitution Society is connecting volunteer lawyers with organizations and chapters on the ground for efforts across the country. If you would like to volunteer, Ashley Erickson has asked that you please contact her directly at firstname.lastname@example.org and include “WLG/WLGAN Sent Us” in the subject line.
WLG signed onto an amicus brief that has just been filed in the Supreme Court in the case of June Medical Services LLC v. Gee. This is an exceedingly important reproductive rights case about a restrictive Louisiana anti-abortion law. It follows just three years on the heels of an identical Texas law already considered by the Supreme Court, and struck down as unconstitutional in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt. The only difference? The composition of the Court, an extremely dangerous precedent (or should we say un-precedent) to set.
You can read the amicus brief, filed by the National Women’s Law Center, HERE<https://womenlawyersongua
You should also take a look at the “story” brief filed by 368 “legal professionals who have exercised their constitutional right to an abortion.” It is exceptionally powerful, turning what is usually dry, legal arguments into vivid and compelling narratives. This brief is HERE <https://womenlawyersongua
A gender pay gap has been documented in numerous studies. We need your assistance to support certain laws that are trying to address this gap, but which are under attack.
In the last 3 years, a number of jurisdictions have passed laws that prohibit employers from asking prior compensation information from their applicants. As you know, employers often use this information to set the applicant’s salary at their new position. Often, in their prior positions, women are making less than men of comparable, experience, credentials, etc. so this practice perpetuates the gender compensation gap.
This survey [CLICK HERE] gathers anonymous information/stories from attorneys who have experienced the following: They applied for a lateral legal position, their potential employer asked their prior compensation, they told them, they got the job and their new compensation was probably based on their old compensation. Then they discovered, or suspected, that a male colleague of equal or less credentials, experience, level, business, etc. was being paid more.
If this describes an experience you have had, please respond to this anonymous survey [SURVEY HERE]. WE NEED YOUR INPUT!! The information will be used in various ways, for example: potential amicus briefs in cases challenging the prohibition on asking compensation history, and for articles, programs and other initiatives on gender pay equity in the legal profession. No names or other identifying information will be asked or used.
Please also FORWARD this link to your network, and ask them to forward to their networks as well!
Thank you so much for your assistance.
Women Lawyers On Guard Action Network Inc. is co-sponsoring a conference on the Equal Rights Amendment in Richmond, VA, on Saturday, October 26, 2019. At that conference, we will be presenting a panel on Gender Pay Equity, including: some shocking statistics on the gender pay gap, legislative and litigation addressing the gap, how the ERA might help close the gap (or not), and some practical ways that legal employers can address this problem. Registration link is HERE (scroll toward bottom). The tickets are only $65 for lawyers, $10 for students and $20 for lawyers practicing five years or less. Abigail Spanberger, Ellie Smeal and other notables will be speaking at the conference.
This New York magazine article examines the consequences of coming forward to report sexual assault or harassment. The cost to women survivors comes not only in the assault or harassment itself, but also in the aftermath of reporting it. Read more: https://www.thecut.com/2019/09/coming-forward-about-sexual-assault-and-what-comes-after.html