Commission explores women’s issues

From staff reports

The upcoming Women of the Year Luncheon and Women of Distinction Awards were key points of discussion when the President’s Commission on the Status of Women met Friday afternoon.

Dr. Melanie Neuilly, assistant professor with the department of criminal justice and criminology and chair of the commission, said it is dedicated to helping women at WSU and in the surrounding community as well.

“The Women of the Year Luncheon and Women of Distinction Awards are a yearly awards ceremony,” Neuilly said. “There are four categories for women to be nominated to, which are alumni, student, employee and women in the community not affiliated with WSU.”

Each nomination category is open until Feb. 29 to any woman who has been noticeably distinguished in her career, public service, or leadership in the community.

The awards and luncheon are presented during National Women’s History Month in March, which recognizes contributions from women across history and honors their achievements.

The commission also discussed the institutional climate at WSU and childcare and family friendly resources on campus for women.

The institutional climate at WSU involves interpersonal issues in the workplace and workplace incivility, said Nikki Finnestead, violence prevention and green dot coordinator at Health and Wellness said at the meeting.

“We know this takes an emotional toll on the workplace and we also want to explore how this takes a financial toll on the workplace as well.” Finnestead said. “We want to explore the various ways that the university can start to address this and start making some changes in this area and really make this an area where people want to come to work.”

She discussed some of the policies WSU has in place already that are clear in their rules about prohibiting forms of violence such as sexual harassment and misconduct.

Reporting by Corinna Thornton