Monday, January 9, 2017
Martha Davis reported recently on a meeting between Donald Trump and the new UN- Secretary General, Antonio Guterres. Part of Guterres' agenda is to support gender equality. Only a few weeks ago, the Trump transition team requested that the State Department provide information on "gender-related staffing, programming, and funding." The memo that was sent to State specified areas of inquiry, which included efforts to end gender-based violence as well as efforts to promote women's participation in political and economic spheres.
This request raises concerns about what motivated the inquiry. Are these global programs likely to be eliminated in the coming years- or maybe months? The only other agency of which the new administration made a similar inquiry was seeking the names of those at the Energy Department who support measures to halt climate changes. Energy refused to release the names.
Senator Jean Shaheen of New Hampshire, responded "I pledge to work with the incoming administration to advance policies that support and protect women and girls world wide, but I can promise that if the next administration intends to role back programs designed to lift women up, it will very quickly meet stiff opposition in the Senate."
Much will be revealed when we know how then President Trump responds to the Women's March on Washington.