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Today’s Lady News: Stripper Sues Club For Unpaid Wages, Claims “Exploitation”

  • Exotic dancer Quansa Thompson is suing her former employer, a D.C. strip club called The House, for unpaid wages under the Federal Fair Labor Standards Act. Thompson says the club only paid dancers $20 per day and they are allowed to keep whatever was left of their tips after giving the DJ and bartender a share. Plus, dancers had to pay the owner $80 for missing a shift, even if they were sick. After missing work one day, Thompson said she was banned from the club when she spoke to a union and threatened to sue her boss. Her lawyer says the strip club gets away with it by classifying dancers as independent contractors and said their practices amount to “exploitation.” [Washington Post]
  • Remember we told you about a store selling black Barbie dolls on sale while white Barbie dolls were full price? The Root imagines what the discount black Barbie would say if she could talk. [The Root]

  • First Lady Michelle Obama penned the cover story for this week’s issue of Newsweek about how parents and schools can feed children more healthfully and turn back the progress on childhood obesity. [Newsweek]
  • Ericka DeBenedictus, 18, of New Mexico won first prize in the Intel Science Talent Search for developing software that will help spacecraft glide through the solar system. [MSNBC]
  • Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi called all the female Democratic Representatives to a private meeting this morning. It’s unclear what the meeting was about, but my guess would be Obama’s health care reform bill. [Roll Call]
  • The Board of Education in New Britain, Connecticut, killed a proposal to develop a policy regarding the distribution of contraceptives at the public schools. The rest of the board voted almost unanimously against it. [New Britain Herald]
  • Nebraska’s Judiciary Committee has advanced two bills that tighten restrictions on abortion. The first bill would ban abortions after the point when a fetus can feel pain; previously abortions were banned after “fetal viability,” when a baby can live outside the womb on its own. The second bill would require abortion providers to discuss the risks of the procedure more in depth with women and would also require the doctor to assess whether the woman had been pressured to get an abortion against her will. [Omaha.com]
  • Alaska’s Supreme Court halted an attempt by Planned Parenthood of Alaska to prevent a “parental notification of abortion” initiative to be added to the state ballot. The initiative would go to the state ballot in August. [Anchorage Daily News]
  • Legislators in South Carolina rejected plans today to ban abortion in the case of rape, incest, or risk of health to the mother in the state health care plans. [Business Week]
  • Politicians in Kalamazoo County, Michigan, voted last night to continue offering abortion coverage in their health insurance plans. [WOODTV]
  • Idaho’s House of Representatives approved a bill yesterday that will allow health care workers, such as pharmacists, to refuse to provide health care they do not approve of, such as the morning-after pill. [CNBC]
  • Why are there so few women on Forbes‘ list of the richest people in the world? [Double X]

INTERNATONAL

  • The High Court of Sierra Leone has overturned a ban on a woman named Iye Kendor Bandabla from becoming chief of Kissy Teng. [BBC]
  • Belgian lawmaker, Mahinur Ozdemir, 27, of Turkey, is the subject of controversy for wearing her hijab (a Muslim head-covering scarf) in Belgium’s parliament. “I am an example of social integration,” Ozdemir said. “Underneath this scarf is a head full of ideas. Even if it hides my hair, it should not hide my personality.” [France24]
  • Michael Kirby, a gay former High Court judge in Australia, said the country should issue an official apology to homosexuals for “oppression” and “inequalities,” similar to the apology it issued to the aborigines. [News.com.au]
  • Sexy text messages — or “sexting” — between two United Arab Emirates airline staffers has gotten the pair sentenced to three months in prison each, according to a Dubai court. The court rules the sexting showed “coercion to commit sin” between the flight attendant and cabin services supervisor. [ITP.net]
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