Another View

Anne Firth Murray gave the Key Note talk at Women’s Health at Stanford’s annual symposium earlier this month. She laid out sad truths about being conceived a female, as seen through each phase of her life. Briefly, some of these points are highlighted below. Birth. Girls are disproportionately subjected to selective abortion and infanticide. Childhood. Girls are given unequal access to education and proportionally more exposed to child abuse and child labor. Up to two million girls are facing the possibility of genital mutilation. Adolescence. More than likely most girls are married or have been pregnant by time they are 18. Girls 12-19 are the fastest growing population with exposure to AIDS. Girls are 4-7 times more vulnerable and likely to devolve into full-blown AIDS. Adulthood. As girls grow into womanhood, more surprises unfold. 350,000 to 400,000 woman die from preventable aspects of childbirth. Women are denied control of their reproductive rights. One in three women are subjected to domestic abuse. Woman are dragged into conflict and refugee violence as a result of war. Surprisingly, twice as many women die from natural disasters as women stay behind to find and save the children, thus are more likely to die. In the workplace women are paid less, subjected to trafficking, and have less access to money. Aging women population are often left alone and in poverty. Is there any wonder why we’re supporting women’s health?