In the know: Women in the news 1/20-1/24

Know Your Value's weekly roundup of women in the news.
Amy Poehler, Beyonce and Elizabeth Warren
Amy Poehler, Beyonce and Elizabeth Warren.NBC, Getty Images

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By Halley Bondy

Hollywood women push director's guild for better parental benefits

The Directors Guild of America requires that its members earn a certain amount of money in guild jobs in order to maintain health benefits. This can be a hardship for directors who need to take maternity leave, like Jessica Dimmock, who began directing the Netflix documentary “Flint Town” in 2018 before she had to take leave. Dimmock was unable to meet the guild’s minimum and was stripped of her benefits. She crafted a letter to the Directors Guild demanding better parental benefits, which was signed by Greta Gerwig, Ava Duvernay, Amy Schumer, and more Hollywood celebrities.

49ers' Katie Sowers first female, openly gay coach in Super Bowl history

Katie Sowers will be the first female and first openly gay coach ever to participate in the Super Bowl. On Feb. 2 in Miami for Super Bowl LIV, Sowers will be a trailblazer as the 49ers’ offensive assistant. When she joined the NFL in 2017, Sowers was the second woman to do so, and she was always open about her sexual orientation. “No matter what you do in life, one of the most important things is to be true to who you are,” Sowers told Outsports in 2017. She said she hoped to pave the way for other members of the NFL to come out.

The 2020 Women’s March drew a smaller but passionate crowd

The 2020 Women’s March in Washington D.C. drew a smaller crowd than in previous years, thanks in part to a smaller permit that allowed for only 10,000 marchers. Infighting and conversations about intersectionality has also caused a drop in attendance, according to NPR. The march has predominantly focused on climate change, reproductive rights and immigration. The first Women’s March in 2017 featured stage appearances by Madonna and Gloria Steinem, and the crowd overwhelmed the city’s downtown.

Double standards are still dogging Elizabeth Warren and all the women candidates

The 2020 presidential election has featured a record slate of female candidates, but gender double-standards have put them all at a disadvantage, according to The Nation writer Joan Walsh. Elizabeth Warren, Amy Klobuchar, Kamala Harris and Kirsten Gillibrand did not gain media traction in the beginning of the race in the face of upstarts like Beto O’Rourke. Warren, the most popular candidate, has been mocked and subjected to ruthless sexism. Women are punished for competing and showing anger, which works against Warren, according to Walsh.

Karine Jean-Pierre: 3 ways I learned to tap into my inner power working under Obama

MSNBC political analyst Karine Jean-Pierre worked in politics for almost two decades, and under President Barack Obama when he was elected in 2008. Jean-Pierre wrote for Know Your Value about the important lessons she learned while making her way at the White House, such as: “embrace what makes you unique,” “find out what motivates you, not what motivates everybody else” and “lead by example.”

Katerina Sakellaropoulou becomes Greece's first woman president

On Wednesday, the Greek parliament elected its first female president, Katerina Sakellaropoulou, who had been serving as the country’s president of the Council of State. The country is otherwise behind Europe in gender parity. Only a handful of women hold senior political positions in Greece, and domestic violence cases had increased by 34 percent in the preceding four years. Many Greeks view Sakellaropoulou’s election as a positive step toward gender equality, according to CNN.

CMT pledges gender parity on video airplay

Country music just became more inclusive. On Wednesday, CMT announced that it will implement a 50/50 gender parity policy in its video airplay across its channels. The ratio had previously been 40/60 in favor of men. Since 2000, there has been a 66 percent decrease in female voices on country radio, according to a University of Ottawa study. CMT officials believe that listeners are being trained to ignore women country singers.

Beyonce's new Ivy Park collection criticized for excluding larger customers

Beyonce’s clothing line Adidas x Ivy Park dropped last weekend, and it featured hoodies, sports bras, jumpsuits and more. The collection sold out quickly, but not without criticism. Customers on Twitter complained that the line’s sizes did not go above an XL— or 16/18 in U.S. sizing — going against the message of inclusivity in the collection’s advertisements. Customers lamented that Beyonce’s previous Ivy Park release in 2016 did not go above an XL, either.