Children’s Defense Fund (CDF) has formally endorsed The Red Card Campaign spearheaded by The African Renaissance Diaspora Network (ARDN) and the National Council of Negro Women. The Red Card Campaign seeks to end all forms of violence and discrimination against women and girls.
In soccer, a red card is shown to any player who commits a serious infraction of the rules, permanently dismissing the player from the field. The Red Card Campaign envisions any form of gender-based discrimination and violence as serious infractions of the rules of society, deserving a red card. It is also part of their efforts to educate the public about the 5th Sustainable Development Goal of the United Nations—Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women. The campaign’s goal is to gather a minimum of 1,000,000 supporters of the Red Card Campaign and present them to policymakers, civil society leaders, and elected officials to demonstrate the critical need to address the safety and equality of women and girls in the United States and across the globe. The greatest challenges to gender equality are the many ways that violence and discrimination against women and girls occur. Violence against women and girls takes many forms: employment discrimination, wage disparity, human trafficking, domestic violence, forced labor, sexual harassment, and physical assault. Women in America and across the world continue to face societal, institutional, and other barriers that prevent them from making real decisions in personal and fundamental aspects of their lives.
Here are a few of the ways that gender inequality affects women and hinders equity and productivity in the United States:
- A 2017 Pew Research Center report records that 4 in 10 U.S. women have experienced discrimination at work because of their gender. Workplace discrimination against women includes being paid less than men despite similar job responsibilities, being held to different performance standards because of gender and being fired or demoted due to a pregnancy. The gender and race wage gap also intersect, disproportionately harming Black and Latina women. Black women earn only 64 cents on the dollar; for Latinas, it is a dismal 54 cents compared to what white men make. Disproportionately represented are women of color in the low-wage workforce. Half of working women of color earn less than $15. In 25 states, at least 60 percent of working women of color earn under $15. Lower wages for Black and Latina mothers result in higher poverty levels for Black and Latinx children.
- Workers in low-wage industries are especially vulnerable to experiencing sexual assault, domestic violence, stalking, and trafficking. In the U.S., a woman is killed at work by an intimate partner twice per month. Additionally, 19.3 million women (and 5.1 million men) in the U.S. have been stalked.
- In the U.S., an estimated 4.9 million persons become trapped in human trafficking at any given time. Human trafficking includes forced labor and coerced sexual activity that benefits the trafficker. Black women and girls become trafficked at alarming rates. Forty percent of sex trafficking victims are Black women, and 57.5 percent of all juvenile prostitution arrests are Black girls.
- Black women and girls comprise more than 30 percent of women and girls reported missing in the U.S., yet Black women and girls constitute only 15 percent of the U.S. female population. More than 90,000 Black women and girls are missing. The homicide rate of Black women has increased dramatically over the past few years, now at eight homicides per 100,000 Black women.
By signing the pledge, we agree to give a red card to all forms of discrimination and violence against women and girls and to respect every other human being fully, regardless of gender, culture, color, language, social origin, birth, property, or religion—hence, to put an end to all forms of discrimination and violence against women and girls. This campaign aligns with our commitment to racial and gender economic equity and our core safety value for all children. As CDF builds off its legacy and transitions toward new goals, CDF must be intersectional and unwavering in its support of Black and Brown women and girls.
Sign the Red Card Pledge at: https://redcardpledge.com/