This Saturday, August 26 is Women’s Equality Day, the date chosen to commemorate the 1920 ratification of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution, granting women the right to vote. Women’s Equality Day is traditionally proclaimed each year by the sitting president. There has been no such announcement yet this year.
Although President Trump declared March, Women’s History month, in June, Politico reported that President Obama’s Council on Women and Girls, established in 2009, had gone dark under the Trump administration. Earlier this month, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo responded by establishing the state’s own council on women and girls.
Women’s Equality Day was first proclaimed in 1973, following the Women’s Strike for Equality, on Aug. 26 1970, rallying for issues including equal opportunity in the workforce, political rights for women, and social equality in relationships, free childcare, and the right to choose abortion, and during ongoing arguments regarding the Equal Rights Amendment over ending legal distinctions between men and women in terms of divorce, property, employment and more -- Not a far cry from the issues we found ourselves still marching for this January.
January’s Women’s March estimated to be one of the largest single day protests in the U.S., the day after President Trump’s inauguration, saw the country rallying for those causes with a renewed focus on LGBT equality, racial justice, gun control, and more.
In advance of Women’s Equality Day, SFGN looked at health and wellness issues including disparities in LBT cancer screening and treatment, IVF options for women starting their own families, and gender bias in sports. We spoke to women about representation, in the arts and through activism. And we spoke with South Florida LBT women about their roles as business leaders, religious leaders, athletes, artists and activists who work to balance inequalities, to provide leadership in the workplace, and to strengthen their communities. Consider it SFGN’s own council on women and girls.
Welcome to the Women and Equality issue, part I. Health and Wellness.
Women in Network, Fort Lauderdale
Winner of SFGN’s Best Group for Women, 2016, Women in Network (WIN) established in 1987 is one of the longest-running lesbian organizations in the state, for networking, socializing, organizing advocacy efforts, and health and educational programs.
“For me, being a part of WIN means I have the chance to socialize and give back to my community,” WIN Board Treasurer Lynn Glover told SFGN. “I am driven by connection and making a difference. I have also cultivated many meaningful business relationships.”
Each month of the first Wednesday, WIN hosts a “WIN First Wednesday” event at a different location across South Florida.
“All of our events are meant to bring women together so that we can have a strong support system in our community and beyond,” Glover said. “I have many friends in WIN, both personally and professionally. They are my ‘sisters’ and I know that I can count on them for love and support.”
Keep up with the WIN’s latest programs and events at WomenInNetwork.com
BLAST (Bi Lesbian and Straight Together), Women of the Palm Beaches
Winners of SFGN’s Best Social Group, 2015, BLAST Women of the Palm Beaches(WPB) describe themselves a social and professional networking group “for women, ladies, kings, lesbians, bisexual gals, girly-girls, butches, femmes, bois, transwomen, lesbian-feminist womyn, questioning, aces/aros, and gay-friendly straight feminists” on Meetup.com.
“Some women plug in for just one or two special interests -- poker, say, or kayaking, or drum lessons, or anti-racism trainings, or women's dances, or the pagan circle -- while others come to lots of different things. There are no dues to pay and pretty much every event is a one-time stand-alone thing - though some meet monthly, such as the archery club,” BLAST co-founder Toni Armstrong Jr. told SFGN.
Founded in 2008, the group has more than 2700 members, mostly locals, but some snow-birds and more than 1900 past meetups.
Compass Community Center, Lake Worth
Women’s Wellness Conference
Sat, August 26, 2017
9:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Compass Center Operations manager Julie Seaver has been voted Best Palm Beach Activist by SFGN readers for two years, and her dedication to the community shows whatever her role.
“Julie embodies the spirit of activism both in the office and out of the office,” said Ryanmarie Rice, Compass Chief of Staff. “She has certainly earned the Best Activist title for a second consecutive year. No one works harder for her community.”
Craig Glover, president of A Better Way Home Care, has been working with Julie using the SAGE Care program to educate his staff about issues faced by LGBT seniors.
"Julie’s openness in sharing her life stories has enabled our staff to talk more freely about their own experiences,” said Glover, “Julie is a convincing proponent of equality for everyone” he said.
Compass Community Center will hold its third annual Women’s Wellness conference Saturday, Aug. 26. At 201 N. Dixie Highway in Lake Worth, FL 33460 The Wellness conference is free, but a donation of $20 is suggested, $10 from students and seniors. A free luncheon will be provided. Healthcare and testing services offered will include free on-site HIV/STI testing, counseling, and linkage to care; and screenings for blood pressure, glucose, and bone density.