March 2018
Saturday March 24 
March for Our Lives - Memphis

Memphis will march in alliance with survivors of the Parkland, Fla., school shooting on Saturday in an event that begins at 10 am at Clayborn Temple, 294 Hernando Street.

The March for Our Lives- Memphis is a chance for all to stand with the survivors and to urge Congress to pass a comprehensive bill to prevent gun violence in our schools and communities.

The march is set to go from Clayborn Temple to the National Civil Rights Museum. At the same time, students and families from across the nation are converging on Washington, DC to demand that their lives and safety become a priority and that we end gun violence and mass shootings in our schools today.

To sign the students' petition, click here . 

34th Women of Achievement Honored Local Activists
    Presenters Were Outstanding Advocates, Educators, Leaders

Honorees and presenters at the 2018 Women of Achievement awards included (front row) state Rep. Karen Camper, Tami Sawyer, Cherisse Scott, Dr. Miriam DeCosta-Willis, Rachel Sumner Haaga, Wanda Taylor, Kamillia Barton, (back row) Deborah Clubb, Julia Allen, Audrey May, Katherine Watkins, Judy Card, Roshun Austin and Shelia Williams. The 35th annual event will be in March 2019. To nominate, click here.
Photo credit: Andrea Zucker Photography

#TimesUp -- Include All Genders and Races in Film Projects 

In a stunning finale to the 90th annual Academy Awards show, Best Actress honoree Frances McDormand said, "I have two words for you: inclusion rider."

Interviewed backstage, McDormand said she had only found out about this tool the previous week. "This has always been available to all - everybody who does a negotiation on a film - which means you can ask for or demand at least 50 percent diversity in not only the casting but the crew. The fact that I just learned that after 35 years in the film business - we aren't going back."

McDormand mentioned the rider after an acceptance speech in which she asked all female nominees to stand up - actors, writers, designers, directors, editors - and then told the hundreds of industry leaders in the room to ask these women about their ideas and projects - not just at the  Oscar parties but in business meetings in the days ahead.

American movies and television are heavily acted and created by white men. The inclusion rider is a way for stars to leverage their power to open the jobs on projects to hiring more than white men. This week a template for the rider was distributed and can be read here.  Dr. Stacy Smith, director of University of Southern California Annenberg's Media, Diversity & Social Change Initiative, studies gender and race in film and has advocated for what she calls an "equity rider." Among her findings:
  • Last year less than a third of all speaking roles went to girls and women -- a gender ratio of 2.3 males to every one female, although females are fully half of the ticket-buying population.
  • Among last year's top 100 films, 45 did not feature even one female black speaking character on screen; 66 were devoid of Asian females, 72 did not feature any speaking Latina characters; and more than 90 were lacking any LGBT+ characters.
Smith says, "Imagine the possibilities if a few actors exercised their power contractually on behalf of women and girls. It wouldn't necessarily mean more lead roles for females, but it would create a diverse onscreen demography reflecting a population comprised of 50 percent women  and girls. In other words, reality."  

So far since the Oscar night challenge, actors Brie Larson, actors/producers Michael B. Jordan, Ben Affleck and Matt Damon, writer/director Paul Feig and the 500-agent William Morris Endeavor talent agency have announced they will be implementing inclusion riders in future.

Frances McDormand accepts award for  " best actress in a leading role" at 90th annual Academy Awards. 
Photo by Chris Pizzello, AP. 

Seminary Connects Domestic Violence to Ministry Training

Memphis Theological Seminary is having conversations about how to integrate more awareness and training about domestic violence into the curriculum since Women's Council executive director Deborah Clubb presented on DV and the Church at the invitation of Dr. Courtney Pace in early March.
Issue: 35
In T his Issue

March for Our Lives


Sexual Assault Awareness month events

About MAWC 

WomenTalk returns 

MAWC receives $3,000 grant


We cannot do this work without your support. 

On April 9, WomenTalk Harassment

The next open house gathering of WomenTalk is set for April 9, 5:30 to 7 p.m. at our office, 2574 Sam Cooper Blvd.

Any topic is welcome and the current focus on sexual harassment is sure to be on tap - women speaking up, abusers identified, survivor support needed in the local response.

Bring your friends, your passion and share a beverage, a snack and your ideas at WomenTalk.

April Sexual Assault Awareness Month Events

Coming soon to deepen awareness about the trauma of sexual assault and our local resources for survivors:

April 14: Shelby Farms Park, 3 rd annual Race Against Sexual Violence by the Memphis/Shelby County Domestic and Sexual Violence Council. 

Register here


April 19: Stand with Survivors presented by Shelby County Rape Crisis Center and LeMoyne-Owen College's HBCU Wellness Project, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.




Gannett Grants $3,000

The Women's Council thanks the Gannett Foundation for the recent grant of $3,000 to support ongoing programs that serve all employers/workplaces with information that focuses on women who are the primary victims of domestic violence and sexual harassment.

For information on the "Victims at Home. Violence at Work." workshops and presentations, contact