Women | St. Louis Public Radio

Women

Illustration by Rici Hoffarth | St. Louis Public Radio

It's a startling number to consider, especially on International Women's Day, March 8.

According to the World Economic Forum's 2017 Global Gender Gap Reportgender parity is over 200 years away. The report benchmarks 144 countries on their progress toward gender parity through four themes, including economic participation and opportunity.

A crowd likely numbering in the thousands filled Luther Ely Smith Square during the rally after the St. Louis Women's March January 21, 2017.
File photo | Camille Phillips | St. Louis Public Radio

The first National Women’s March was held in Washington, D.C., one year ago. That's when thousands of pink pussyhat-clad people filled streets in the nation’s capital and cities across the country to rally for the rights of women.

Betty Arrington plays afternoon bingo at the Mary Ryder Home. (Jan. 4, 2017)
Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

A residence in the Central West End has had the reputation of catering to poor and low-income women for years. But now, the organization's work to house middle-aged and elderly women with mental illnesses and, in some cases, formerly homeless women, is vital in a city seeking to address its issues around homelessness.

The Mary Ryder Home, 4361 Olive St., isn’t a nursing home or an independent senior-living facility. It gives women over age 55 who can no longer afford to live on their own — either because of mental health issues or financial problems — a place to stay. Permanently.

Joann Shew, her granddaughter Izzy Shew and daughter-in-law Jessica Shew pose as they wait for the bus for Washington, D.C. on January 21st.
Nancy Fowler | St. Louis Public Radio

More than 150 St. Louisans traveled and slept on charter buses to join the Women’s March on Washington over the weekend.

For many, the trip was about reinvigorating family ties as well as rallying for social justice.

What issues confront women in Missouri?

Mar 31, 2016
Social Security Administration

In January of 2015, the Women’s Foundation, headquartered in Kansas City, MO, published a report called “The Status of Women in Missouri.”

On Thursday’s St. Louis on the Air, Wendy Doyle, President and CEO of the Women’s Foundation, and Sonja Erickson, senior analyst at the Institute for Public Policy, joined host Don Marsh to discuss the report, its findings and what measures are being taken to help solve the issues highlighted in the report.

Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

When Shante Duncan founded Sisters Helping Each other to Reach a Higher Height (S.H.E.R.A.H.) in 2004, three women came to her house to share their dreams and goals and to “become better versions of themselves.” Duncan was in her early 20s, a native of north St. Louis who returned to the area to help her community, and she was going through a difficult breakup.

“I was a woman hurt and I wanted to reach out to other sisters to say, ‘This hurts, are you hurting? What can we do to heal? Once we do that, how do we take this to heal our community?’” Duncan explained.

Fox Smith is one of eight storytellers who will talk about women's bodies at an event called "Picturing Women." In this photo, she's participating in a cosplay event, which involves dressing up, usually like an anime or video-game character.
Fox Smith

Images of the perfect female form are all around us, on social media, in movies and in advertisements for products from liquor to luxury cars. It’s hard not to feel inferior no matter what kind of body you have.

Fox Smith of Shrewsbury has complicated feelings about her appearance.

"Somewhere between loving and hating [my] body," Smith said.

One of the studies suggests many Missouri women might be choosing between keeping their jobs and caring for family members.
Courtesy of GSCSNJ | Flickr

Two new reports on women's political participation and representation and work-family supports for women are giving Missouri middling rankings.

The studies are part of a larger series by the nonprofit Institute for Women's Policy Research on the "Status of Women in the States."

Willow Rosen, (left) and Sarah Michelson are opening a midwifery clinic and feminist sex shop at 3350 Ohio Ave. in St. Louis.
Durrie Bouscaren | St. Louis Public Radio

Right now, the storefront just off of Cherokee Street is still a construction site. A pile of plaster has been recently chipped away to expose a historic brick wall. A family of squirrels lives in the air conditioning wall unit.  

But Sarah Michelson and Willow Rosen have big plans. The space will house a midwifery center, community space for parenting classes, and “Box,” a feminist sex toy shop.

Conference Draws Attention To Female Artists

Oct 31, 2014
Alice Guy-Blaché
Courtesy of Cinema St. Louis

As women strive to gain equal ground in the workplace, they’re also working to establish the same ground in the arts. The Women in the Arts Conference at the University of Missouri–St. Louis will feature lectures, demonstrations, papers, performances and workshops from 27 speakers on Nov. 6-8.

“Everyone thinks the playing field is level,” said Barbara Harbach, a composer and director of the Women in the Arts Conference. “It’s not quite as level as you might think.”

(Flickr/Philip Leara)

It’s Tuesday, that magical day of the week when our thoughts turn to questions of economics, business, innovation, technology … and related topics that tickle our fancy but we haven’t been able to report on ourselves. It’s the day we say, “Don’t think we haven’t been paying attention, dear reader,” and we share some the things we’ve been reading on topics of interest. 

Discussion: Muslim Women In The Islamic World

Mar 31, 2014
courtesy photo

In Western media, we hear reports that Muslim women are relegated to a second class, largely powerless status and are denied education, independence and employment. We hear stories of women brutalized and abused.  

Courtesy HarperCollins

At the time of the American Revolution, married women in America were not even allowed to own property, let alone vote. Because women did not sign the Declaration of Independence, serve as generals in the war, or get elected to public office, they are not often mentioned in the history of the time.

But despite their lack of official roles, there were women who helped found our nation through their words and deeds, and through their association with the men who have become known as our Founding Fathers.

(via Flickr/marcn)

Earlier this year, the 113th Congress was sworn in and as part of that, there are now a record-breaking 20 female senators.

U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer of California told ABC “World News” anchor Diane Sawyer, "I think that until we get to 50, we still have to fight because it's still a problem.”

(via Flickr/League of Women Voters of California)

Women are not a homogenous voting bloc in elections though their influence as a group plays a big role.

President Barack Obama carried 55 percent of the demographic on his way to re-election.

Host Don Marsh talks with two political experts about the role women played in the 2012 election cycle, both as voters and as candidates.

Marsh is joined by Dayna Stock, Manager of the Sue Shear Institute for Women in Public Life at the University of Missouri – St. Louis, and Gwyneth Williams, professor of political science at Webster University.

(National Cancer Institute/Bill Branson)

A new project in north St. Louis aims to lower breast cancer death rates for women of color.

Washington University sociologist Sarah Gehlert says even though nationwide white women are more likely to get breast cancer, black women are about 35 percent more likely to die of the disease.

She says in St. Louis that number is closer to 60 percent.