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Author Topic: SENATE BILL: Access for Afghan Women Act of 2012 (Law'd)  (Read 2374 times)
Senator North Carolina Yankee
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« on: April 18, 2012, 08:11:30 pm »
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To authorize assistance for women and girls in Afghanistan, and for other purposes.

Be it enacted by the Senate of the Atlasia.

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

This Act may be cited as the `Access for Afghan Women Act of 2012'.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS.

Senate makes the following findings:

1. Despite the removal of the Taliban from power, women in Afghanistan continue to experience brutal violation of their human rights, generally outside of Kabul where warlords are reexerting control.

2. Strong and continued Atlasian support can ensure that the advances made by Afghan women since the fall of the Taliban will continue and grow, rather than recede.

3. The Atlasia has made a substantial contribution to the emergency relief and humanitarian efforts for Afghanistan. Completing the Atlasian mission in Afghanistan will also require significant and long-term investments in development and reconstruction assistance.

4. The maternal mortality rate in Afghanistan is the second highest in the world, with recent reports estimating that every 30 minutes an Afghan woman dies of pregnancy related causes, or approximately 15,000 women every year. The estimated maternal mortality rate of 1,600 deaths per 100,000 live births can be significantly reduced through access to primary health care services, including safe birthing supplies, emergency obstetric care, prenatal and postnatal care, contraception, and prevention and treatment for the effects of sexual coercion and rape.

5. Women comprise 75 percent or more of the refugees and internally displaced in camps, urban areas, and villages in Afghanistan.

6. 85 percent of Afghanistan's population lives in rural areas. The women in rural areas perform vital roles in food production, processing, and preparation. Successful reconstruction and development assistance must target rural women as part of any agricultural interventions.

7. Within Afghanistan and outside of Afghanistan, local women's organizations are delivering critical services and have the knowledge and experience to assist the Atlasia in delivering effective relief aid.

8. The Afghan Ministry for Women's Affairs is an important ministry that is essential for re-establishing women's human rights, ensuring that women are included in all development efforts, and delivering critical legal, health, education, and economic services to women throughout Afghanistan's 30 provinces.

9.  Afghan women are taking the initiative to reach across the conflict divide and foster peace. Women's perspectives and experiences in seeking solutions to conflicts are necessary to ensure lasting peace.

10. Adequate security in both urban and rural areas is essential if women and girls are to exercise their human rights, work, attend school, and otherwise participate in and benefit from humanitarian and development programs sponsored by the Atlasia.

SEC. 3. ESTABLISHMENT OF AFGHAN WOMEN'S FUND.

(a) ESTABLISHMENT- The Administrator of the Atlasian Agency for International Development shall establish a fund for the purpose of assisting women and girls in Afghanistan in the areas of political and human rights, health care, education, training, security, and shelter.

(b) ACTIVITIES SUPPORTED- The fund established under subsection (a) shall support the following activities:

(1) Direct financial and programmatic assistance to the Ministry of Women's Affairs in Afghanistan (hereafter in this section referred to as the `Ministry') to promote the strengthening of the Ministry as the Government of Afghanistan continues its transition to a long-term government structure and to enable the Ministry to fulfill its mandate. The Ministry may use such assistance to support activities such as the following:

(A) Multiyear women-centered economic development programs, including programs to assist widows, female heads of household, women in rural areas, and disabled women.

(B) Collaboration with the Ministry of Health to construct culturally appropriate health infrastructure and delivery of high-quality comprehensive health care programs, including primary, maternal, child, reproductive, and mental health care.

(C) Programs to prevent trafficking in persons, assist victims, and apprehend and prosecute traffickers in persons.

(2) Direct financial assistance to the National Human Rights Commission of Afghanistan.

(3) Construction of women's educational facilities in Afghanistan.

(c) AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS- There are authorized to be appropriated to carry out this section $22,500,000 for each of the fiscal years 2013, 2014, and 2015 and such sums as are necessary for each subsequent fiscal year.

SEC. 4. ASSISTANCE TO AFGHANISTAN.

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, not less than 15 percent of the aggregate amount of economic and humanitarian assistance authorized to be made available to Afghanistan for each of the fiscal years 2013, 2014, and 2015 shall be made available for assistance directly to Afghan-led local nongovernmental organizations, including Afghan women-led organizations, with demonstrated experience in delivering services to Afghan women and children to support their programmatic activities and organizational development. In recognition of the appreciating capacity of Afghan-led local nongovernmental organizations, including Afghan women-led organizations, an appropriate percentage of the aggregate amount of economic and humanitarian assistance authorized to be made available to Afghanistan for fiscal year 2006 and each subsequent fiscal year shall be made available for assistance directly to Afghan-led local nongovernmental organizations, including Afghan women-led organizations.

SEC. 5. REQUIREMENTS RELATING TO UNITED STATES ACTIVITIES IN AFGHANISTAN.

(a) IN GENERAL- Activities described in subsections (b) through (e) that are carried out by the Atlasia in Afghanistan shall comply with the applicable requirements contained in such subsections.

(b) GOVERNANCE OF AFGHANISTAN- With respect to the governance of Afghanistan, the applicable requirements are the following:

(1) Include the perspectives and advice of Afghan women's organizations, networks, and leaders in Atlasia policymaking related to the governance of Afghanistan.

(2) Promote the inclusion of a significant number of women in future legislative bodies to ensure that women's full range of human rights are included and upheld in any constitution or legal structures of Afghanistan.

(3) Encourage the appointment of women to high level positions within Afghan Ministries.

(c) POST-CONFLICT RECONSTRUCTION AND DEVELOPMENT- With respect to activities relating to post-conflict stability in Afghanistan, the applicable requirements are the following:

(1) Encourage Atlasian organizations that receive funds authorized by this Act to partner with or create Afghan-led counterpart organizations and provide these organizations with significant financial resources, technical assistance, and capacity building.

(2) Increase women's access to or ownership of productive assets such as land, water, agricultural inputs, credit, and property.

(3) Provide long-term financial assistance for primary, secondary, higher, nontraditional, and vocational education for Afghan girls, women, boys, and men.

(4) Integrate education and training programs for former combatants with economic development programs to encourage their reintegration into society and to promote post-conflict stability.

(5) Provide assistance to rehabilitate children affected by the conflict, particularly child soldiers.

(6) Support educational efforts to increase awareness with respect to landmines, facilitate the removal of landmines, and provide services to individuals with disabilities caused by landmines.

(d) AFGHAN MILITARY AND POLICE- With respect to training for military and police forces in Afghanistan, the applicable requirements are the following:

(1) Include training on the protection, rights, and the particular needs of women and emphasize that violations of women's rights are intolerable and should be prosecuted.

(2) Encourage such trainers who will carry out the activities in paragraph (1) to consult with women's organizations in Afghanistan to ensure that training content and materials are adequate, appropriate, and comprehensive.

(e) RELIEF, RESETTLEMENT, AND REPATRIATION OF REFUGEES AND INTERNALLY DISPLACED PERSONS- With respect to the relief, resettlement, and repatriation of refugees and internally displaced persons in Afghanistan, the applicable requirements are the following:

(1) Take all necessary steps to ensure that women refugees and internally displaced persons in camps, urban areas, and villages are directly receiving food aid, shelter, relief supplies, and other services from Atlasian-sponsored programs.

(2) Take all necessary steps to ensure that women refugees in camps, urban areas, and villages are accessing high-quality health and medical services, including primary, maternal, child, and mental health services.

(3) Take all necessary steps to ensure that women and children in refugee camps are protected from sexual exploitation.

(4) Take all necessary steps to ensure refugees and internally displaced persons that seek to return to their place of origin can do so voluntarily, safely, and with the full protection of their rights. Atlasian-sponsored efforts shall not coerce refugees or internally displaced persons to return to their places of origin.

SEC. 6. REPORTING REQUIREMENTS.

Not later than 60 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, and annually thereafter, the President shall prepare and transmit to Senate a report that contains documentation of the progress in implementing the requirements of section 5. All data in the report shall be disaggregated by gender.

Sponsor: Pingvin99
Co-sponsor: Alfred F. Jones
« Last Edit: May 08, 2012, 04:33:35 pm by Senator North Carolina Yankee »Logged

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Senator North Carolina Yankee
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« Reply #1 on: April 18, 2012, 08:15:40 pm »
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Just realized this is "international" stuff and can go into the international slot, imagine that. Tongue


PINGVIN! ALFRED! FRONT AND CENTER!!!

You got 24 hours to explain why this is an important act.
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IDS Legislator Pingvin
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« Reply #2 on: April 19, 2012, 01:00:43 am »
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I"M HERE!
Why I think that this act is very important:
1) It will improve our relationship with the Afghanistan.
2) It is a one more step in a worldwide human rights.
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Citizen Alfred
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« Reply #3 on: April 19, 2012, 05:26:22 am »
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Well, we've got to help these women, don't we? I don't see why you would oppose this, unless you're a cold, heartless slug of a human.
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« Reply #4 on: April 19, 2012, 05:44:36 am »
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^^^^^
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Napoleon
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« Reply #5 on: April 19, 2012, 05:59:02 am »
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I like this bill, and suggest including family planning education and reproductive health care. Unless these women are educated about their rights and in control of their bodies, they will remain oppressed.

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Afghanistan holds the distinction of having of the highest fertility rate per woman in Asia - the average woman will bear six children in her lifetime.
Quote
One woman was so happy to have birth control pills that she hugged and kissed [the woman distributing them], ripped open a package and swallowed a pill with a gulp of water.
http://jezebel.com/5405867/do-the-reproductive-rights-of-afghan-women-rest-with-religious-men
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« Reply #6 on: April 19, 2012, 06:00:59 am »
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Napoleon- I understand you want to turn a unanimous, well-intentioned bill into an abortion debate... I recommend we spare the controversy and pass this and help the women of Afghanistan
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« Reply #7 on: April 19, 2012, 06:03:39 am »
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Napoleon- I understand you want to turn a unanimous, well-intentioned bill into an abortion debate... I recommend we spare the controversy and pass this and help the women of Afghanistan

Did you even read the link or is this Whig War on Women going international?

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As a recent Economist story on fertility trends emphasized, women in the developing world generally have more children than they want to. When we see falling fertility rates, it's normally a result of women being empowered to make more decisions about their own lives.

Quote
"‘If my husband finds out, he'll punish me,' " Mahmouda recalled the woman saying. " ‘I'm pregnant now. I really need those pills.' "

Taking birth control in secret is not unusual, the women said. Even Aziza's own husband opposes her using it.

"He said, ‘We are Muslims and God gives us babies,' " she said.

You have to be literally heartless to not be concerned for the health and safety of these poor women.
« Last Edit: April 19, 2012, 06:06:28 am by Governor Napoleon »Logged

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Napoleon
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« Reply #8 on: April 19, 2012, 06:07:40 am »
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Anyway, I request a pro-woman Senator to introduce this amendment.
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« Reply #9 on: April 19, 2012, 06:29:37 am »
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NOt to consider health and safety? What is this bill about??? And Whig War on Women- take your talking point trash elsewhere.  There's no cable news in the Fantasy boards
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ilikeverin
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« Reply #10 on: April 19, 2012, 09:00:59 am »
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I like this bill, and suggest including family planning education and reproductive health care. Unless these women are educated about their rights and in control of their bodies, they will remain oppressed.

Quote
Afghanistan holds the distinction of having of the highest fertility rate per woman in Asia - the average woman will bear six children in her lifetime.
Quote
One woman was so happy to have birth control pills that she hugged and kissed [the woman distributing them], ripped open a package and swallowed a pill with a gulp of water.
http://jezebel.com/5405867/do-the-reproductive-rights-of-afghan-women-rest-with-religious-men

Would the Afghan government be able to reject this aid if we included such provisions?  I'm not opposed to them, I just want to make sure that won't screw us over as far as actually accomplishing anything in this bill.
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« Reply #11 on: April 19, 2012, 12:30:52 pm »
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I propose this amendment to Section 3, subsection 1B.

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(B) Collaboration with the Ministry of Health to construct culturally appropriate health infrastructure and delivery of high-quality comprehensive health care programs, including primary, maternal, child, reproductive, and mental health care, as well as education programs for family planning.

Reproductive healthcare services are already covered by this.
« Last Edit: April 19, 2012, 12:51:13 pm by Senator Scott »Logged
IDS Legislator Pingvin
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« Reply #12 on: April 19, 2012, 01:32:04 pm »
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I wouldn't oppose that.
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Scott
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« Reply #13 on: April 19, 2012, 01:50:47 pm »
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I only have a couple concerns with this legislation- how do we ensure that the funds are not being swindled out in corruption and that the Afghan government meets the requirements prescribed by the bill?  Those are always my biggest concerns with foreign aid.
« Last Edit: April 19, 2012, 01:56:41 pm by Senator Scott »Logged
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« Reply #14 on: April 19, 2012, 04:26:04 pm »
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I support Napoleon's suggestion (never thought I'd say that).
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Senator North Carolina Yankee
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« Reply #15 on: April 19, 2012, 04:32:03 pm »
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I would like to echo ILV's concerns, as well as those of the Senator Scott's.


Pingvin, Alfred and SoEA Ben? RESPONSES TO THESE CONCERNS ARE REQUESTED!!!!


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Citizen Alfred
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« Reply #16 on: April 19, 2012, 06:05:28 pm »
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Well, if we can, we'd be monitoring it, of course.
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There is a lot of humor to be mined from this as the mind of LBJ in the body of an 18 month old baby girl is quite hilarious.

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Scott
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« Reply #17 on: April 19, 2012, 06:21:53 pm »
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Well, if we can, we'd be monitoring it, of course.

How so? Tongue
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Citizen Alfred
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« Reply #18 on: April 19, 2012, 08:35:53 pm »
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Well, if we can, we'd be monitoring it, of course.

How so? Tongue
I guess wed make the people who take care of that stuff do it, if they exist.

I'm not very good at this whole 'writing bills' thing. I just vote Smiley.
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There is a lot of humor to be mined from this as the mind of LBJ in the body of an 18 month old baby girl is quite hilarious.

Alfred is the Atlasian equivalent of a malevolent deity.

IDS Legislator Pingvin
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« Reply #19 on: April 20, 2012, 12:46:08 am »
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I think that we should appoint a Special Representative or something like that. He would report regularly to President and Senate.
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« Reply #20 on: April 20, 2012, 01:04:57 am »
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I propose this amendment to Section 6.

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SEC. 6. REPORTING REQUIREMENTS.

Upon enactment of this act, the Secretary of External Affairs shall be responsible to oversee appropriate use of funds and resources.  The Secretary must report to the President how requirements are being met.  Not later than 60 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, and annually thereafter, both the President and the Secretary shall prepare and transmit to Senate a report that contains documentation of the progress in implementing the requirements of section 5. All data in the report shall be disaggregated by gender.
« Last Edit: April 20, 2012, 01:10:26 am by Senator Scott »Logged
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« Reply #21 on: April 20, 2012, 01:11:11 am »
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I would not oppose that.
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Citizen Alfred
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« Reply #22 on: April 20, 2012, 05:19:27 am »
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I'm fine with that.
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There is a lot of humor to be mined from this as the mind of LBJ in the body of an 18 month old baby girl is quite hilarious.

Alfred is the Atlasian equivalent of a malevolent deity.

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« Reply #23 on: April 20, 2012, 01:02:58 pm »
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It gives me more work, so I oppose it Tongue

But yeah, that's fine.
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Senator North Carolina Yankee
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« Reply #24 on: April 20, 2012, 10:21:27 pm »
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Senators have 24 hours to object.


I fully endorse making Benny boy work a hell of lot more.


What about ILV's concerns?
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