Today’s Lady News: Wal-Mart Lawyers Warned Company Of Sexual Discrimination Lawsuit

  • Wal-Mart is the focus of the largest sexual discrimination lawsuit in history, but in 1995 the company actually hired a law firm to research their vulnerability to such a suit. A subsequent report found disparities in pay and promotion among men and women employed by the company as well as Sam’s Club. Men were found to earn 19 percent more than women in some positions and were found to be five and a half times more likely to be promoted. In 2001, seven women filed a class-action lawsuit against Wal-Mart. [New York Times]
  • Black men are more frequently marrying women of other races, according to a study released today by the Pew Research Center. Interracial unions now account for one in six new marriages in the United States, a new high. Blacks and Caucasians are the least common type of interracial marriages (1 in 60 marriages) and unions between Asians and Caucasians are the most common. [New York Times]
  • Are the Kardashian sisters — and 637 “bikini body” magazine covers — bringing a newer, more voluptuous body ideal to Hollywood? [CNN]

  • A Muslim woman in San Diego, California, was erroneously told to remove her headscarf for a driver’s license photo. The DMV has said she can take a second photo wearing a head scarf, citing a California state law that allows for religious head coverings in ID photos. In such cases, photographers are are allowed to ask the person to push their head covering to the side so their full face is showing. [Los Angeles Times]
  • Massachusetts’ mandatory health insurance law may not have helped women too much. A study by the Urban Institute and the Blue Closs Blue Shield of MA Foundation found that in 2009 nearly the same percentage of women spend at least five percent of their family’s income on health care costs not covered by insurance as did in 2006, when the law was enacted. [Boston Globe]
  • Wisconsin’s attorney general has asked for an audit of the University of WI’s health care training, under the suspicion that gynecological students are being trained to perform abortions with state funding. Some UW med students specializing in gynecology do internships at a Planned Parenthood, where they can learn how to perform abortions. [Chicago Tribune]
  • Police in San Francisco say surveillance tape may have filmed a 68-year-old man molesting his step-granddaughter in the stairwell at an elementary school. The man, who claimed to have been bringing lunch to the girl, was witnessed by a teacher’s aide and fled when the aide called police. [San Jose Mercury News]
  • “See, this is why women aren’t in charge of sports.” That’s CNBC’s Mark Haines after his co-anchor Erin Burnett said something positive about the kerfluffle with umpire Jim Joyce. Charming. [True/Slant]
  • Sports columnist Sally Jenkins says women athletes are too often left out of the “highlights reel” on sports shows — except, of course, when it comes to the Williams sisters and their lacy panties outfits. [Washington Post]


  • The French Muslim Council has warned the country against enacting a ban on women wearing face-covering veils in public. French legal experts have warned the country that such a ban would be unconstitutional. [Reuters]
  • British medical journal The Lancet has devoted its latest issue to the survival of mothers after childbirth worldwide. For example, in Bangladesh if a mother dies during childbirth, the child is far less likely to live to age 10, possibly from health problems caused by not receiving the many benefits of breastfeeding . [CNN]