The Utah Center for Legal Inclusion is proud to announce its participation in the Bolder Way Forward Launch event, held on June 9, 2023. For multiple years, Utah has continued to have high levels of domestic violence, sexual assault, child sexual abuse, and gender-based discrimination, while also ranking as the worst state for women’s equality and having low levels of women’s leadership representation in nearly all domains, including politics and business. In an effort to address these poor outcomes, the Utah Women and Leadership Project (UWLP) has launched A Bolder Way Forward (BWF). The overarching mission of BWF is to make Utah a place where more girls and women can thrive in any setting, including the workplace and community. While UWLP is coordinating this effort, hundreds of organizations and individuals are also leading by bringing together entities and individuals who are already doing related work or who want to get involved. There are 18 specific areas of focus that BWF focuses on; learn more about the framework and areas here.
UCLI is assuming co-leadership for the Bolder Way Forward’s Sexual Harassment & Gender-Based Discrimination spoke. This spoke values the fundamental dignity and quality of all people and aims to decrease and ultimately eliminate sexual harassment and discrimination from Utah’s workplaces. Sexual harassment behaviors (unwanted touching, jokes, slurs, unwelcome questions, etc.) contribute to a feeling of fear and trepidation, which is amplified when women experience unfair treatment, shame, marginalization, or blatant disregard due to their gender. Research shows that these experiences diminish a woman’s sense of self-respect, confidence, and security. For women to speak up and lead out, and even just participate in society as an equal contributor, they need to feel safe and respected. This spoke will work with a broad coalition of partners in the legal and business community to focus on ways that Utah can decrease sexual harassment and other types of gender-based discrimination.
At the launch event, we had an opportunity to network with great community leaders and like-minded individuals, hear welcome remarks from Zions Bank leadership, and receive an introduction to the framework Dr. Susan Madsen. Next, the leadership of each of the 18 areas of focus shared an overview of their spokes, along with their vision and goals. UCLI executive director, Kaitlyn Pieper, presented spoke goals along with co-leader and attorney Danica Baird. Following the program, participants convened for lunch, joining the room of the area of focus they were most interested in. It was a great opportunity to gather to launch an important cause that UCLI is eager to work towards. UCLI is currently putting together a committee to direct these efforts; if you or your legal institution would like to get involved, email .