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. Annual Report (99-00)     Annual Report (97-98) 
   Annual Report (96-97)

 

COMMISSION ON THE STATUS OF WOMEN 
-- Annual Report


July 1, 1999 – June 30, 2000

BACKGROUND

The Humboldt County Commission on the Status of Women, authorized by County Ordinances 1178 and 757, was created in March 1971 in response to state legislative statute. Humboldt County’s Commission on the Status of Women was the second such group in California, preceded only by Sacramento.

The Commission advised the Board in matters concerning the status of women within Humboldt County. It monitors basic and legitimate women’s concerns by working for the elimination of such inequities in laws, practices or conditions as they may adversely affect women and girls within the County. It recommends activities and materials to public and private entities working to develop equitable programs to meet the special needs of women and girls. It acts as a two-way information agency for federal, state and local women’s groups and other Status of Women Commissions. It helps promote awareness of women’s unique role in traditional fields or otherwise, by planning special study groups, workshops, conferences or events. It serves as an information center on the effect of social attitudes and pressures on women that shape their roles in society.

The members and their terms of office are as follows:

District 1: Nancy Nieboer 06/30/2001
District 2: Mary Ann Murphy 06/30/2003
District 3: Cindy Schulz 06/30/2001
District 4: VACANT
District 5: Simone Taylor 06/30/2003

At Large:
Diana Cooper 06/30/2001
Tera Prucha 06/30/2003
Sally Biggins 06/30/2001
Gina Jorgenson 06/30/2001
Julie Millard 06/30/2003

Members are appointed to four-year terms by the Board of Supervisors, with one representing each of the five supervisorial districts plus five at-large appointments.

FINANCES

The Commission is unfunded but maintains a small account for donations. In September 1999 there was $41.25 in the checking account and $75.00 in the savings account. In July 2000 there was $142.12 total in the two accounts.

HIGHLIGHTS

Duplication of the video series "Women Work" and "Community Voices" was accomplished. Distribution of the television shows went to the Eureka Library, Humboldt State University, College of the Redwood’s Career Center, and the Women’s Resource Center. They included:

The Challenge of Change
Taking Charge
Women’s Health Care
Lesbian and Gay Resources
Building on Success
The Financial Challenge
Honoring Yurok Women
Children in Humboldt County

A goal setting retreat was held in August 1999. Activities set for the upcoming months included: "Take Your Daughters to Work Day;" "Y6B" (day of recognition for the earth’s population reaching 6 Billion); "Women’s History Month;" "Knight Initiative" (Proposition 22); participate in the Women’s Health Fair; hold meeting in Southern part of the County; and continue doing outreach and education on women’s issues, especially pay equity, corporate health care, and Cal-Works. The Commission was successful with these goals.

BYLAWS

Bylaws were updated and approved unanimously on August 24, 1999. Copy filed with Clerk of the Board.

THE COMMISSION WAS ESPECIALLY PROUD OF THE BOARD OF SUPERVISORS FOR SENDING A LETTER TO WAL-MART, URGING THEM TO CARRY EMERGENCY CONTRACEPTION.

ATTENDANCE AT MEETINGS

Commissioner Biggins attended the Association of California Commissions for Women state meeting in Universal City, California; August 1999.
Commissioner Prucha attended the Feminist Majority’s Expo 2000 for Women’s Empowerment conference in Baltimore, Maryland; March 2000.
Commissioner Cooper attended the National Association of Commissions for Women convention in San Francisco, California; July 2000.
Commissioner Jorgenson attended a science summer school at Vanderbilt University; Summer 2000.

OUTREACH & COLLABORATION

The Commission participated in the "California Women’s Agenda" local planning series in the Fall 1999. Our voice was added to the over 500 grassroots organizations who are setting priorities and strategies for the Women’s Action Agenda 2000. The goal was to connect global issues discussed at the 1995 Beijing Conference with our local experiences. All input cumulated at the United Nations Special Assembly on Women held in New York in June 2000.

Commissioner Biggins wrote an article about the Commission for the Humboldt County Republican Women’s group; Fall 1999.

Commissioner’s Schulz and Prucha spoke about the Commission at the showing of "Not For Ourselves Alone: The Story of Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony" at the Eureka Library in November 1999. The ensuing discussion was certainly wide-ranging and interesting.

Commissioner Prucha gave a presentation regarding the status of women in Humboldt County to the Redwood Empire’s American Business Women Association in January 2000.

Commissioner Cooper acted as Women’s History judge for Humboldt State University’s "Turning Points in History" contest held in February 2000. She coordinated a showing of the winners’ materials at the Eureka Library in March 2000.

Commissioners Prucha and Schulz participated in a radio show on KHSU entitled "Through the Eyes of Women," promoting the Commission, March 2000.

Commissioner Schulz secured funding from the Humboldt Area Foundation to hold an "Honoring Women" breakfast, with key note speaker Assemblywoman Virginia Strom-Martin. This event was scheduled for March 2000 and was postponed until further notice.

Commissioners attended various domestic violence workshops, hate crime meetings, child abuse council meetings, and forums on women’s health issues. The Commission held their July meeting in Garberville. Several interested members of the public attended.

The Humboldt County Commission on the Status of Women acted as the Lead Group for several forums initiated by the Women’s Foundation of San Francisco. The Women’s Foundation is focusing on women’s issues in the rural areas of California.


GUEST SPEAKERS

District Attorney Terry Farmer spoke with the Commission in October 1999 regarding prosecution of sexual assault cases, the term "beyond a reasonable doubt," and how his office decides how and when to take up a case. Commissioners were especially concerned about the "Reggae on the River" sexual assault case that occurred in August 1999.

Domestic Violence Prevention Coordinator Sherry Johnson spoke with the Commission in March 2000 about the third year of this program in Humboldt County. The ultimate goal is to stop violence before it stops.


FUTURE

The number one concern for Humboldt County women is HEALTH.