Weekly Feminist Happenings April 5th-11th


Tuesday, April 5th

The Public Lands Initiative–Is It Right for Us?: What is the Public Lands Initiative? Will it protect Utah’s wilderness lands? Will it promote economic development? Who will win and who will lose? Can the right balance be found? The Project for Deeper Understanding will host a free, open public conversation about the P.L.I. for all citizens on Tuesday, April 5th. Panelists include representatives of the environmental and outdoor recreation communities and both Rep. Bishop’s and Rep. Chaffetz’ offices. Details: St. Luke’s Church – 4595 N. Silver Springs Dr. in Snyderville (Park City) Time: 7:00 to 9:00 PM For more info, call Charles at 435-901-2131.

America and Islam: Peace and Justice in an Age of ISIS and Islamaphobia: Dr. Omid Safi is a Professor of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies at Duke University, the Director of Duke University’s Islamic Studies Center, and a columnist for On Being. Born in Jacksonville, Florida and raised in Iran, Safi fled Tehran in 1985 with his family and resettled in the United States. He has served on the board of the Pluarlism Project at Harvard University and is currently the co-chair of the steering committee for the Study of Islam and the Islamic Mysticism Group at the American Academy of Religion. Details: Starts at 7 p.m. at the Marmalade branch of the SLC Public Library.

Wednesday, April 6th

Screening of Spotlight: A Talk to a Survivor powered event, presented in partnership with The Utah Film Center and The City Library. Details: 5:45p–Visit tables of Start by Believing community partners- and consider taking the Start by Believing pledge. 7:00 p.m. Spotlight. 9:20: Survivor Question and Answer panel, including Phil Saviano, the real SNAP survivor portrayed in the Spotlight. Salt Lake City Public Library (210 E 400 S, Salt Lake City, Utah 84111).

Rock N’ Roll Camp for Girls Fundraiser: For more information on the camp: www.rockcampforgirlsslc.org Secily Saunders, Hillary McDaniel (of Canyons) and Talia Keys are founding members of the first ever Rock n’ Roll Camp for Girls – Salt Lake City. We are raising funds to make this camp the best environment it can be for empowering young girls through music.

Canyons – www.facebook.com/canyons801
Talia Keys – www.facebook.com/TaliaKeysMusic
Mary Tebbs – www.facebook.com/Mary-Tebbs-Entertainment-129852540401366
Elytra (formerly Medusa’s Cross) – www.facebook.com/medusascrossmusic

Details: Purchase tickets here. Tickets: $5 – 100% of the proceeds go to the Rock n’ Roll Camp for Girls – Salt Lake City

Thursday, April 7th

Screening of Peace Officer: “Peace Officer” is a feature documentary about the increasingly militarized state of American police. The story is told through the perspective of William “Dub” Lawrence, a former sheriff who established and trained his rural state’s first SWAT team only to see that same unit kill his son-in-law in a controversial standoff 30 years later. Sundance Film Festival co-founder and Department of Film and Media Arts producer-in-residence, Sterling Van Wagenen, and executive producer of the film, will be in attendance for the screening. The directors, Brad Barber and Scott Christopherson, will also be in attendance and will join Van Wagenen in a Q&A with the audience following the screening. Details: From 6:30-7:30 at the Post Theater  (245 S. Fort Douglas Blvd).

Screening of Gen Silent: SAGE Utah (Service & Advocacy for GLBT Elders) proudly presents a public screening of the film
Gen Silent (2011). This critically-acclaimed documentary follows the trials and triumphs of six diverse LGBTQ older adults as they share their experiences of growing older and healthcare systems that often continue to marginalize them. A community question and answer period will follow. Everyone who is interested in the health and well-being of our heroic LGBTQ elders is invited. Details: From 6:30-9:00 Salt Lake City Downtown Library Auditorium (210 E 400 S). Attendance is FREE but please register in advance as seating is limited.

Rape Awareness Event: Sage Williams and Elise Otteson will be presenting Dr. Julie Valentine’s (of the College of Nursing) findings on rape and sexual assault in Utah. The founders of Honey (a local sexual assault awareness organization) will present as well. The event will be hosted by Bri Garrido, Miss Eastern Utah, who is also a huge advocate in the community for rape awareness. If you have ever experienced rape or sexual assault, know someone who has, or want to know more about these issues, come! You will become more educated and inspired by these issues and learn how to help and support those who have experienced rape or sexual assault. This is a great way to kick off Sexual Assault Awareness Month! Details: Starts at 8 p.m. at Brigham Young University JKB 1102.

Friday, April 8th

Utah Pacific Island Film Festival: Utah Pacific Island Film Series hosted by Kava Talks promoting awareness of Aprils Sexual Assault Awareness Month screening, Pacific Island pop culture film, Once Were Warriors. Film is Rated R. See film description. Panel discussion will follow moderated by University of Utah’s Ulysses Tongaonevai with panelists from UCASA, YWCA, Rape Recovery Center, and Pacific Island Behaviour Health Coaltion. Resources onsite to answer any questions. Details: Register for tickets here. Starts at 7 p.m. at the Sorenson Unity Center (1383 S 900 W, Salt Lake City).

Saturday, April 9th

UHPCO Be A Superhero 5K Fun Run/Walk: Utah Hospice and Palliative Care Organization is raising hospice awareness and honoring Hospice Volunteers who serve those who are declining in health or who are near the end of life. Participants are encouraged to dress up as their favorite superhero (or come dressed as the superhero you already are!) Details: From 9 a.m. to noon at Liberty Park.

I Am Salt Lake LIVE Podcast: Guests include: Jimmy Martin (Geek Show Podcast, Big Movie Mouth-Off, Utah’s Classic 103.5 The Arrow, KSL 5 TV, SLUG Mag, and The Mediocre Show); Kat Martin (Kat Martin Artist); Leigh George Kade (Geek Show Podcast, and Frisch); Rachel Arent Kade (Frisch). Details: Saturday, April 9th at Club at 50 Westt. 50 West Broadway, Salt Lake City. This is a FREE show. Doors are at 8pm. We will be recording a live podcast and opening it up to audience questions at the end. This show is sponsored by our friends at SLUG Mag.

Share your event here! 

Planned Parenthood Is Hiring!

Planned Parenthood

Planned Parenthood is losing an amazing employee, and person, Emily Andrews. Although I’m sad to see Emily go, that means a wonderful position is opening up with the PPAC team!

Communications and Marketing Coordinator

Position Overview:

The Communication and Marketing Coordinator (CMC) is responsible for the design of, implementation, and monitoring of PPAU’s communication and marketing programs. The CMC works collaboratively within the public affairs team and senior staff to coordinate strategy, themes and messaging for all Planned Parenthood Association of Utah (PPAU) and Planned Parenthood Action Council of Utah (PPAC) online and printed material. The CMC will continue to develop and implement a social media plan to enhance existing marketing and social media programs; increase online followers and heighten awareness for Planned Parenthood’s services, education programs, advocacy and PPAC’s electoral work. Provide support to staff in creating online fundraising tactics.


Education and/or Experience

  • College degree in related field (communications, marketing, management, etc.) plus 1-2 years work experience in a related field (public relations, social marketing, journalism, etc) or;
  • 2 years college plus 3-4 years relevant work experience or;
  • high school diploma (or GED) plus 5-7 years of relevant experience 


  • Demonstrated ability to assess needs and evaluate implementation of programs.
  • Familiarity and application of social media a must.
  • Familiarity and knowledge of content management software a must.
  • Familiarity and knowledge of Adobe Creative Suite a must.
  • Proficient in VAN and data management systems.
  • Detail-oriented with excellent project management skills.
  • Demonstrates organizational ability with strong attention to detail.
  • Demonstrates ability to be self-managed and self-directed to initiate, organize, and complete tasks in a timely manner with little supervision.
  • Adheres to, complies with, and demonstrates support for agency mission, policies, and procedures.
  • Ability to represent the agency in a professional manner and to work as a team member to achieve agency goals.

Apply here! 

I Don’t Need to Be A Mom: Jessica Valenti’s ‘Why Have Kids’

why have kids

If you’re in a heterosexual relationship in Utah, chances are you’ve felt, or are feeling, the pressure to conceive. That pressure is partly a byproduct of living amongst Mormons, people who belong to a faith which declares, “God’s commandment for His children to multiply and replenish the earth remains in force.” The LDS Church is very pro-children, Utah is at the head of the pack for average household size (3.177 compared to 2.63 nationally). What that means for a lot of us is pressure to have children, pressure that, though well-intended, can often feel relentless, even for non-members of the faith. Personally, I feel a lot of pressure to have kids. I’m in a stable marriage, have a good job, graduate-level education, a house, and I’m healthy (insofar as I know). At our wedding, three out of four of our parents publicly pleaded for my partner and I to have children.

Intense external pressure to conceive, emerging desires about having a child of my own, and my need for researching all sides of a decision, led me to Jessica Valenti’s (2012) Why Have Kids: A New Mom Explores the Truth About Parenting and Happiness. I’m a fan of Jessica Valenti’s, and my short review of her book is a recommendation. I have no doubt this review is colored by the way I relate to Valenti overall, so take that for what you will. Although I sometimes find myself critiquing bits of her work, I think her feminism is constantly evolving, and she has my respect. Why Have Kids is well-written, funny, easy-to-read, and thoroughly researched. I liked the book, and I think you might too if you’re a person feeling pressure to conceive. Below are a few of the standout pieces from the book:

Parenthood is a gendered  mess that puts undue pressure on women in very specific and very damaging ways. You should know some of the risks before you dive in. 

A very specific ideal of motherhood and maternal instinct is pushed on cis-women, and it’s pushed hard to the detriment of them and their children. Valenti describes a moment when her daughter Layla, who was premature, was finally suckling away:

“I was looking down at her being nourished by my body, my eyes welling up. This was the moment I had heard about, the moment I was waiting for. The thought had no sooner crossed my mind when Layla sneezed, leaving a gigantic green-and-red booger stuck to the tip of my nipple. I realized then that there was no book or philosophy that would prepare me for parenthood. Despite my fantasy of a Dr. Sears-approved motherhood, reality hit me square in the tit” (p. 22-23).

Funny, a little gross, but funny, right?! She doesn’t just share her own story, but stories of mothers breastfeeding children until their nipples bleed, their children almost starve, and they nearly lose their minds—all in the pursuit of perfect motherhood. Why Have Kids reminds us that there is no reason to sacrifice your mental or physical health pursuing perfect motherhood, because it doesn’t exist (any human with a mother knows this).

The most important things you can do as a parent include fulfilling basic needs and providing a good ethical framework so your kid isn’t a monster to other humans. Breast feeding, unmedicated vaginal births, and homemade bento box lunches aren’t a necessary part of motherhood. We should all remember that.

It’s important to determine what is truly a desire for parenthood, and what is caving to pressure from people around you. There’s a kid’s future at stake, after all.

Valenti tells takes us back to 2008 when Nebraska decriminalized child abandonment. This “safe haven” law was meant to protect newborns from infanticide. Utah has a safe haven law, one where a parent, or anyone in custody of a newborn, can drop them off at a hospital, and staff will care for the baby without calling the police or asking questions. The problem with the Nebraska law is that it didn’t specify that a child be newly born. A couple of months into the passing of the Nebraska law, “thirty-six children had been left in state hospitals and police stations. Twenty-two of the children were over thirteen years old. A fifty-one-year-old grandmother dropped off a twelve-year-old boy. One father dropped off his entire family—nine children from ages one to seventeen. Others drove from neighboring states to drop off their children once they heard that they could abandon them without repercussion” (Valenti, 2012, p. 96).

The guy dropping off a family of nine is clearly an outlying example, but parenthood is a difficult job. A job that’s sold to people, especially moms, as the “most important job they’ll ever have,” but without the reminder that its thankless, guilt-riddled, and a lifetime commitment. The law in Nebraska changed to only protect dropping off newborns, but the age change couldn’t undo the fact that parents dropped dozens of kids off–parents who felt trapped by parenthood.

Make sure you’re committed to having children, that it’s something you really want, because no child deserves abandonment like the ones in Nebraska, and they also don’t deserve parents who would drop them off if the legislature allowed. It’s crucial that we determine that we really want to have kids, or if it’s just the parental goading, or your best friend’s new baby that makes you want to conceive.

Alright, after reading this review, it sounds a bit bleak, and it kind of is, but ultimately Why Have Kids was a stellar book. It reminded me of some of the reasons I’ve chosen not to have kids up to this point. It also reminded me that there are many different types of motherhood, just like there are many types of womanhood. It reminded me that I can be a mom who writes feminist literature like Jessica Valenti. In the end, even though I live in Utah, and even though there’s near-constant pressure for me to have children, I don’t have to. I don’t have to have kids because I’m in a position to, and Jessica Valenti’s book did its best job in reminding me of that.

I borrowed my copy of Why Have Kids from the Salt Lake County Library system, so there’s a copy to read if you’re interested after this review!

Weekly Feminist Happenings March 29th-April 4th

Trans Day of Visibility

Tuesday, March 29th

Beyond Farm to Table–Community, Culture, and Food: We are excited to welcome Jen Castle and Blake Spalding, the chef-owners of Hell’s Backbone Grill and Farm as keynote speakers in this semester’s Social Soup lecture on March 29 from 12-1 p.m. in the Gould Auditorium at Marriott Library. The lecture, Beyond Farm-to-Table: Community, Culture & Food, will focus on the benefits, struggles, and empowering experiences of owning and operating a farm-to-table restaurant. Plus, vegetarian soup will be served. Best of all, it is free. Details: From noon to 1 p.m. in the Gould Auditorium at the University of Utah.

Wednesday, March 30th

Managing Climate Risks in Resilient Cities: This lecture is in conjunction with the Wallace Stegner Center 21st Annual Symposium- Green Infrastructure, Resilient Cities: New Challenges, New Solutions.

“Preparing for and managing climate change-related risks will require whole communities to act to increase their resilience, regardless of what the future brings. … Local decision-makers and their communities must make the changing climate a key factor in their everyday decisions about infrastructure investment, issuing of development permits, administration of zoning and building codes and judgments about land conservation.” –Lawrence Susskind Details: From 12:15-1:15 at the SJ Quinney School of Law.

Pioneering Women Tour: This special tour weaves Utah’s unique state history into the story of women’s battle to gain leadership and suffrage. Learn about the pioneering women, historic and modern, who are depicted in the artwork and exhibits throughout the State Capitol building.

The Vision Not Victim: Jordan photography exhibition, will feature compelling photos of Syrian and Jordanian girls who dare to dream. The photos are a visual call to action and highlight how the IRC empowers women and girls to build a better future for themselves and their communities. Proceeds from the sales of the artwork will support the IRC’s life-changing work in Salt Lake City and the Vision Not Victim program. Details: From 6-8 p.m. at Zions Bank (1 S Main St, Salt Lake City). Space is Limited. RSVP is required. RSVP to Amy Meyer at GenRSLC@rescue.org.

Details: From 6-7:15 p.m. at the Utah State Capitol. Questions? Please contact Emmylou Manwill (emanwill@utah.gov) – who will guide the tour and is a member of the YWCA Young Women’s Leadership Council.



Thursday, March 31st

Transgender Day of Visibility: Did you know 80% – 90% people don’t know a transgender person? Here in Utah that’s around 2.5 million people who don’t know a transgender person in their daily lives. Well when we heard your ideas of what would improve the lives of transgender people one idea came up more than any other, awareness building. Teaching people what it means to be transgender and humanizing ourselves to the general public.

One key to building awareness is actually really simple, visibility. It’s that spirit that transgender day of visibility was started and happens March 31st of every year. The Transgender Inclusion Project is proud to be celebrating this day at the Utah Pride Center. We will be unveiling Voices, a film project telling the stories of everyday transgender Utahns.

So trans people, gender non-conforming people, and our allies, join us. Let’s show the world just how visible we can be, and in the process build real and lasting transgender power in Utah. Details: From 6-8 p.m. at the Utah Pride Center (255 E 400 S, Salt Lake City, Utah 84111).

Love the Rape Recovery Center with Saucy Skillets: If you love Utah then you love the Rape Recovery Center. For over 40 yours the Rape Recovery Center has worked to make Utah safer for everyone. And now, you’ve got a special day to show your love – and a special way. Join us from 11:00 a.m. – 2: 00 p.m. for a celebration of our community; with speakers, music and food by the Saucy Skillet. All of the proceeds from Love UT Give UT and 10% of the Saucy Skillet sales will go to Rape Recovery Center’s mission of prevention and services towards sexual assault. Details: From 11 a.m to 2 p.m. at the Rape Recovery Center (2035 South 1300 East, Salt Lake City).

Unequal Voices – The Politics of Inequality: Hosted by the Utah Chapter of the Scholars Strategy Network. The event will be a day-long symposium on inequality in Utah and the U.S., with a focus on gender- and income-based inequalities, and their causes and consequences.
Details: From 9:30-11:45 a.m., two morning panels at the Hinckley Institute of Politics will feature scholars from Utah and around the country presenting their research on these topics. In the afternoon, from 2:30-4:00pm, at the City Library, there will be a roundtable discussion featuring some of these same scholars, State Senator Jani Iwamoto, City Councilman Derek Kitchen, and representatives from Voices for Utah Children and Center for Community Change.

Friday, April 1st

How Did Utah Women Fare this Legislative Session: Join the Utah Women’s Coalition and the Hinckley Institute of Politics for a conversation with legislators about the 2016 legislative session, the impact it had on Utah women, and where progress needs to be made moving forward.

– Representative Becky Edwards
– Senator Jani Iwamoto
– Representative Angela Romero
– Representative Carol Spackman Moss

Discussion moderated by Dr. Susan Madsen, Orin R. Woodbury Professor of Leadership & Ethics, and Director of the Utah Women & Leadership Project.

Details: From noon to 1 p.m. at the Hinckley Institute of Politics (260 Central Campus Dr, Rm 253, Salt Lake City, Utah 84112).

Submit your event here! 

Weekly Feminist Happenings March 15th-21st

The Improvables

Tuesday, March 15th

Partnering for Better Health–Bringing Utah’s Patient Voices to Research: Patients, researchers, providers, policymakers, and payors are invited to the event to:

  1. Identify and prioritize questions related to patient-centered outcomes for Utah that are important to all stakeholders,
  2. Share best practices that facilitate patient engagement and increased identification and utilization of patient reported measures
  3. Disseminate patient-centered awareness and improve understanding of the value of integrating researchers in the health care community to address the patient, provider, payor and community perspectives
  4. Promote health services research in Utah
  5. Facilitate interaction and communication among individuals interested in patient-centered health services research

Details: From 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the University of Utah Health Sciences Building (20 N 2000 E ).

Ben Lesser–Holocaust Survivor and Author Speaking at Riverton High School: Ben Lesser, Holocaust survivor and author of the book “Living a Life that Matters” will be speaking at Riverton High School on Tuesday, March 15th at 6:00PM. This event is free and open to the community. Details: From 6-8 p.m. at Riverton High School (12476 S. Sivlerwolf Way).

Wednesday, March 16th

Sense/Ability Tour: Created in collaboration with Easy to Love, Hard to Raise, SENSE/ABILITY aims to foster an accepting and understanding museum environment, in which sensory-sensitive children and their families will feel comfortable and included while discovering social concepts found in our exhibitions. Details: From 10-11 a.m. at the Utah Museum of Contemporary Art (20 S. West Temple). Space is limited to 15 families. Please RSVP to Jared.Steffensen@utahmoca.org

How to Be A Bitch: Join us for another Taboo Talk on Wednesday, March 16. This time with special guest professor Kim Zarkin, giving a preview for her class offered this May Term! Details: From 6-8 p.m. at Westminster College.

Friday, March 18th

The Improvables–Femme Funny: The girls are back in town! It’s our 2nd annual Ladies’ Night show and we are so excited to gather 12 of the wittiest women on the Wasatch Front together to bring you an unforgettable night of laughter and fun! Plus, it’s for a good cause – all proceeds will go to the YWCA Women in Jeopardy Shelter Program. Help us help them by coming to the show!

Details: Show starts at 10 p.m. at the CenterPoint Legacy Theatre (523 N. 400 W., Centerville). Tickets cost $6 at the door and additional donations are more than welcome. If you have a KSL Deals Voucher, we will also be accepting those, but would appreciate an additional donation to help the cause. Doors open at 9:40 PM and all seating is on a first come, first served basis.

Monday, March 21st

The Hunting Ground screening and panel: Free and open to the public. Details: From 4-6 p.m. in the College of Social Work, Okazaki Community Meeting Room (SW 155-B).

Share your next event here!