AllAboutLaw Blog: International Women’s Day, the aviation industry and more

This week’s edition of the AllAboutLaw blog looks at the events held last Sunday to mark International Women’s Day, the necessity of innovation in the aviation industry, and Mexico’s disregard for mangroves in pursuit of oil.

  • Last updated Mar 12, 2020 3:15:51 PM
  • Tuula Petersen
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International Women’s Day

In 1909, the Socialist Party of America declared the first National Women’s Day after 15,00 women demonstrated in New York City demanding societal reform a year earlier. The celebration became international in 1910 following Clara Zetkin’s proposal at an International Conference of Working Women in Copenhagen.

Last Sunday, people from around the world celebrated the achievements reached thus far in improving gender equality in professional and personal environments while raising awareness on further hurdles to overcome for women’s rights. 

However, the celebration of International Women’s Day varied from country to country in light of its socio-political climate. For instance, in Mexico, the Sunday’s demonstration transitioned into a nationwide strike as women refrained from going to work for 24 hours to protest the rise in violence. In Argentina, protesters marched through the streets holding red roses and signs with femicide victims. However, in Pakistan, a court ruled that participants in Sunday’s demonstrations had to adhere to “decency and moral values” and from engaging in “controversial acts”. In Asia, several International Woman’s Day events were cancelled due to the coronavirus. This did not prevent South Korea’s gender equality minister Lee Jung-Ok from stating in a video message: “Although we can’t be physically together, our minds for realising gender equality are stronger than ever”.

International Woman’s Day followed a report recently published by the United Nations, which found that almost 90% of both men and women are prejudiced against women. Such a finding does not help in achieving gender equality because where biases against women are stronger, inequality between genders is higher.

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The judge restores equality, as though a line had been cut into unequal parts, and he removed from the larger part the amount by which it exceeds the half of the line, and added this amount to the smaller part. And when the whole has been halved, then they say that each person has what is properly his own, when he has got an equal share. 

Aristotle 

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Firm news

Two senior litigation specialists have left their former employers to set up a London boutique focusing on corporate, insolvency and banking disputes, under the name Luke Harrison.

Sidley Austin reports growth in its partner profits, up 10.6% from 2018.

Demand for American law firms continues to grow to the detriment of their UK rivals.

While not revealing London results, Shearman & Sterling’s global revenue growth increased by 1%.

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Aviation industry in turmoil?

Last week’s announcement that Flybe went into administration came as a surprise to the industry, particularly in light of the financial support it received in January. While Flybe claims the coronavirus is partly to blame for its collapse, the aviation industry as a whole is facing challenges. The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has estimated that the global revenues losses for commercial airlines as a result of the coronavirus could reach $113 billion. However, if American Airlines’ filing for bankruptcy protection is anything to go by, the industry has faced difficulties prior to the outbreak. Most notably, increasing fuel costs, changing consumer demands and labour costs mean the industry constantly needs to rely on innovative new operations to ensure profitability.

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A relentless pursuit of oil

Defying a government order, a Mexican state-owned company is illegally destroying protected mangrove trees for the construction of an oil refinery. The company in question, Pemex had requested on several occasions a permit to chop down more mangroves after having acquired a conditional building permit in August 2019. However, Mexico’s environmental regulator ASEA denied these further projects due to the economic and environmental importance of protecting that complex ecosystem. Upon confirmation that more mangroves were destroyed for the purpose of an oil refinery, those responsible could be imprisoned and further fines could be imposed.

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Recommended reading

The International Criminal Court has authorised an investigation into alleged war crimes in Afghanistan.

Spain looks to change its controversial rape laws by focusing on the importance of sexual consent, while the UK Government considers legislation to stop the use of the “rough sex defence”.

Does the legal industry need a standardised vocabulary?

EU countries have called for the adoption of the 2030 greenhouse gas emissions reduction target to be met as soon as possible.

Australia has announced plans to use a biosecurity law to restrict the movements of coronavirus patients.

Argentina may become the first major Latin American country to legalise abortion.

A comedian has changed his name to Hugo Boss, in protest against the brand sending cease-and-desist letters to small businesses with the word boss in their company name.

New research reveals slavery has yet to be decriminalised in almost half of all countries in the world.

Following the uproar over the iPhone’s battery life, Apple has agreed to pay up to $500 million to settle the lawsuit.

Australia has launched legal action against Facebook in relation to the Cambridge Analytica scandal.

Suspects of the downing of flight MH17 go on trial.

 

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