March 9, 2007

The Public Forum . . . El Foro Publico

Commemorating International Women’s Day

International Women’s Day (8 March) is an occasion marked by women’s groups around the world. This date is also commemorated at the United Nations and is designated in many countries as a national holiday. When women on all continents, often divided by national boundaries and by ethnic, linguistic, cultural, economic and political differences, come together to celebrate their day, they can look back to a tradition that represents at least nine decades of struggle for equality, justice, peace and development.

International Women’s Day is the story of ordinary women as makers of history; it is rooted in the centuries-old struggle of women to participate in society on an equal footing with men. In ancient Greece, Lysistrata initiated a sexual strike against men in order to end war; during the French Revolution, Parisian women calling for “liberty, equality, fraternity” marched on Versailles to demand women’s suffrage.

The idea of an International Women’s Day first arose at the turn of the century, which in the industrialized world was a period of expansion and turbulence, booming population growth and radical ideologies.

Consuelo Manríquez de Beltrán
Correia Middle School, Educator
Calaca Press, Co-founder

Thank you to those who fought to preserve Paradise Valley Hospital as non-profit

I would like to extend my personal thanks to everyone in the community who passionately and tirelessly fought to prevent the sale of the previously not-for-profit Paradise Valley Hospital to a for-profit corporation. Despite our best efforts, the hospital was sold after a closed-door deal made by parent corporation Adventist Health.

The sale of Paradise Valley Hospital is another manifestation of our national health care crisis that has left families with exorbitant health care costs and limited medical services. In San Diego County, our Board of Supervisors is keeping on top of this critical issue. That is why we ordered an objective assessment of our regional health care system and are using that report to identify ways to improve local health care.

The sale of Paradise Valley Hospital came over the opposition of the community that is served by the hospital. However, now that the sale has been approved by the state Attorney General’s office, it is time for us to move forward. The County and the community must work with the new owners, Prime Healthcare Services, to make sure they continue to provide quality care to our local residents. We must also urge Prime Healthcare to actively listen to the community it now serves and build a partnership with the County and community groups.

The changed status of Paradise Valley Hospital also emphasizes that now, more than ever, we need all of our local health care providers to put the needs of patients first. That is why it is so critical that the University of California, San Diego not move its acute care hospital from Hillcrest to La Jolla, as has been proposed. Let us urge UCSD to examine other options that will keep a significant in-patient presence at the Hillcrest campus. The region’s fragile safety net cannot withstand the loss of any further medical resources for uninsured and underinsured families and individuals in the South County.

Greg Cox
Supervisor, First District

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