Members of Congress urge NIH to take action to stop sexual harassment in science
U.S. Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., and U.S. Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn., sent a letter Monday to the National Institutes of Health requesting a briefing about how the agency is addressing sexual harassment in science. The lawmakers’ letter asked NIH officials to provide information about its sexual harassment policy, relevant working groups or task forces, and the number of harassment settlements that occurred in NIH-supported facilities. Read the letter here.
Salk settles two of three gender discrimination lawsuits
The Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla, Calif., settled gender discrimination lawsuits with two of its faculty members, Kathy Jones and Vicky Lundblad. The lawsuits accused the institute of preventing the plaintiffs from receiving promotions, salary increases, and access to prestigious grants. Beverly Emerson, a third plaintiff who left Salk Institute after her contract expired in December, is moving forward with her lawsuit. Read more here.
White House releases research and development priorities for FY20
The U.S. White House Office of Science and Technology Policy and the Office of Management and Budget released a memorandum last week regarding the Trump administration’s research and development budget priorities for fiscal year 2020. The memo will be used to guide agencies during their FY20 budget formulation. Read more here.
New leader of White House Office of Science and Technology Policy faces challenges
Scientists wonder whether Kelvin Droegemeier, President Donald Trump’s nominee to lead the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, will have any influence on the president’s policy decisions. The Trump administration has ignored the advice of several panels of scientific advisers, proposed slashing science agencies’ budgets, and dismissed data when crafting policy. Whether Droegemeier can break through remains to be seen. Read more here.
Trump travel ban will worsen U.S. physician shortage
The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to uphold a travel ban from five Muslim-majority countries is the latest example of tightening U.S. immigration restrictions. Anti-immigration policies make it harder to recruit international physicians to alleviate the shortage faced by many communities across America. The biggest impact will be in rural communities that recruit a high percentage of international medical graduates because domestic graduates want to live and work in bigger cities. Read more here.
Sign up for August is for Advocacy to make your voice heard
This month is your chance to meet with your congressional representatives and discuss the importance of the scientific enterprise to your community. Every August, congressional members go back to their districts to meet with their constituents, and the ASBMB staff will help you schedule and meet with your representatives. Watch the informational webinar here, and sign up here to make your voice heard.