Washington, D.C.—Today Ana Marie Argilagos, President and CEO of Hispanics in Philanthropy, issued the following statement celebrating International Women’s Day:
“Today women are leading the way on innovation and transforming the lives of people around the world with extraordinary accomplishments in science, business, technology, education, art, agriculture, youth development, governance and much more.
“But their leadership does not begin or end with these important accomplishments. Throughout history, women have led the fight against injustice and oppression, from fighting for the right to vote, to marching for equal pay, to advocating for human rights around the globe. In many of these battles for justice, equality, and human rights, the courage of women was evident. The bravery women have shown in their willingness to speak publicly about sexual harassment and sexual violence has sparked a new awakening among women around the globe. Women feel more empowered than ever before to stand up, to speak up, and to be counted.
“And yet, too often women continue to struggle against systemic discrimination and sexual violence, which has catastrophic results on families and communities. According to the World Bank, violence against women and girls is at pandemic levels, affecting 1 in 3 women in their lifetime. And across Latin America, 1 in 4 girls marries before the age of 18, exposing them to violence throughout their lives, and trapping them in a cycle of poverty.
“In the United States, nearly half of all women in the U.S. say they have experienced sexual harassment in the workplace, according to a 2017 NBC News/Wall Street Journal survey. To make the situation even more untenable, women still earn only 80 cents for every dollar paid to a white non-Hispanic man; Latinas are only at 53 cents. Finally, despite the recent gains for women during the 2018 midterm elections, women are still underrepresented in elected offices across the country.
“On this International Women’s Day, Hispanics in Philanthropy is honored to partner with the YWCA USA to advocate for gender equity. HIP will be among the many organizations speaking at the United Nations on the Commission on the Status of Women and advocating for the empowerment of women and girls through increased access to public services and support.
“In the past year, HIP has responded to the human rights violations against migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border by shining a spotlight on the perilous situation facing the the large numbers of women and their children making the journey across Central America. By bringing together the country’s most important philanthropic leaders to better understand the dangerous conditions from which families are fleeing, the difficulty of their journey, and the faulty asylum-seeking process they have to subsequently undergo, we are changing the way philanthropy invests their resources to maximize impact.
Later this month, HIP will lead a third delegation of funders, this time to the southern border of Mexico to focus on protecting the human rights of women and the LGBTQI community.
“Last but not least, HIP’s Gender Equity Program is empowering women across the Americas through the #GOMujeres campaign. This crowdfunding campaign is helping over 50 nonprofits from in the U.S. and Latin American to both raise money for their projects and raise their collective voice to advance women’s rights.