Tuesday, August 8,
Marital status affects political
strategy in England
A story published today in the
London Telegraph reports that an internal memo leaked to
the press warned the Tory leader, William Hague, that he risks alienating women by putting
too great an emphasis on marriage.
A survey by the Conservatives' policy forum found that many party
members felt that it should improve its image to attract more young working women. The
survey of 270 local groups found that some grassroots members felt that "too heavy an
emphasis on traditional marriage by our party would be politically unwise".
However, most supported Mr. Hague's emphasis on marriage as the
foundation of the family, according to the document. Most Tory activists said they
deplored the present "moral state of society" and only 39 of the groups surveyed
said that single mothers should be defined as a family.
Questioned about what constituted a family, only 22 groups said that
homosexual couples would satisfy the criteria. Mr. Hague plans to put the family, with
Europe, crime, the health service and asylum seekers, on the agenda for the next election.
Monday, August 7, 2000
More households in Latin
America now headed by unmarried women
A story published today by Agencia AFE reports that the number of
Latin American families being supported by women has increased over the past few years,
with as many as 60 percent of the poorest households falling into this category, Spain's
Codespa Foundation said in a report released Monday.
The report, "Latin American Women and Work: Inequalities,
Progress and Future Challenges," revealed that in the past decade the gap between the
percentage of men and women who live in poverty has grown, in what was called "the
feminization of poverty."
The Codespa Foundation, whose honorary president is Prince Felipe,
heir to the Spanish crown, is a non-governmental organization that for 15 years has been
supporting Third World development.
Though in Latin America the division of labor within the family is
deeply rooted -- women work inside the home, men outside -- the number of households
economically supported by women has increased.
"More than 60 percent of poor families in Latin America are
estimated to be single-parent households, and most are headed by women," the report
Codespa said three factors accounted for the statistics: more
parents, usually fathers, now leave their families -- often, in rural areas, to seek work
in the cities; more single women have children on their own; and men continue to have
significantly shorter lifespans.