3 IDC Members Refuse to Co-Sponsor Reproductive Health Act

By catherine,

Tell them: You can’t have it both ways!

NYS Senators & IDC leading members Klein, Savino & Carlucci claim to be pro-choice BUT refuse to sign on as co-sponsors of the Reproductive Health Act*.

Just like you can’t be “a little bit pregnant”, you can’t be “a little bit pro-choice”. You cannot pick & choose civil rights. It’s all or nothing.

These 3 IDC traitors want women to vote for them, so they lie.

*They say, “We’re Pro-choice.” BUT they do not support women having 21st century medical care.
*They do not support giving New York women the full constitutional protect guaranteed by Roe v. Wade.
*They do not support putting abortion care in the health code.
*They support keeping abortion in the penal code.

Because of them, if Astorino, or his equivalent, becomes governor, it will be easy to “tweek” the law and, potentially, end up prosecuting women and their doctors.

(You say that can’t happen here, but remember we also did not think Trump and his anti-choice, sexually abusive mentality would end up in the White House.)

(*The Reproductive Health Act would guarantee New York women 21st century medical care, and the full constitutional protection of Roe; plus it would put abortion in the health code where it belongs, and remove it from the penal code.)

Call Klein, Savino & Carlucci and Demand They sign on as Co-Sponsors of the Reproductive Health Act!

Jeff Klein: 718-822-2049 and/or 518-455-3595

Diane Savino: 718-727-9406 and/or 518-455-2437 and/or 718-333-0311

David Carlucci: 845-623-3627 and/or 518-455-2991 and/or 914-941-2041

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If Not Now, WHEN? If Not Here, WHERE?

By catherine,

As we enter 2017, we must demand that Governor Cuomo STAND with the women of New York State.

Governor Cuomo used his powers: 1. to pass the Marriage Equality Act; 2. to pass Sensible Gun Legislation, and 3. to pass Anti-Fracking Legislation.

Governor Cuomo must use those same powers to make New York a Reproductive Rights Sanctuary State.

To do so, he will need to oppose the IDC (so-called Independent Democratic Conference) comprised of 7 rogue members who work with the anti-choice Republican Senate at the expense of their constituents, simply for their own personal power grab.

Cuomo is up for re-election in 2018.
Tell him the TIME is NOW.

We must tell Governor Cuomo that he cannot turn a deaf ear to the women of New York. He cannot win without us.

Help us keep women’s reproductive rights on the front burner for Governor Cuomo.

Remind Cuomo, Donald Trump intends to overturn Roe v. Wade, take away funding from Planned Parenthood, cut Obamacare which will take away contraception from millions, appoint over 100 anti-choice federal judges plus U.S. Supreme Court Justices – and the list goes on.

This is the time for Governor Cuomo to stand up for women!

———————-
Anti-Abortion Groups Expect Quick Action from Trump

Trump to Inherit more than 100 Court Vacancies, Plans to Reshape Judiciary

The Abortion Conversation We Need to Have

States Enacted 60 Abortion Restrictions in 2016

Abortion Foes, Emboldened by Trump, Promise “Onslaught” of Tough Restrictions

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Supreme Court Strikes Down Anti-Abortion Law

By catherine,

The U.S. Supreme Court just ruled,
in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt,
that Texas’ HB 2 admitting privileges & surgical center requirements are
unconstitutional!

This is a huge win for women everywhere!

Although this case only addresses this Texas law, the effect of this decision should have a much broader impact.

Approximately 24 other states have passed similar restrictions into law. Although the majority of these laws have been challenged, they have not made it to the U. S. Supreme Court.

Now there is a strong case to strike down similar laws in these other states.

The Details in the Ruling

It was a 5-3 decision with Justice Stephen Breyer writing the majority opinion on behalf of Justices Elena Kagan, Sonia Sotomayor, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Anthony Kennedy and himself.

> The ruling throws out an earlier Appellate Court decision which – had it been upheld – would have resulted in the closing of the vast majority of abortion clinics in Texas, leaving only 9 of the more than 40 that were functioning before the law was passed.

> This case centered on the question, had Texas lawmakers placed an “undue burden” on the constitutional right to an abortion with the new restrictions? The language “undue burden” was established in the 1992 landmark case Planned Parenthood v. Casey.

> In the Majority Opinion, the justices explained that the two parts of the Texas law being challenged create a “substantial obstacle in the path of women” who are seeking abortions and neither provision “offers medical benefits sufficient to justify the burdens upon access that each imposes.” In other words, YES, Texas’ HB 2 did place an “undue burden” on women!

(Texas’ HB 2 had required doctors who performed abortions to have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles. The law also had required abortion clinics to meet the stricter standards of hospital-style “ambulatory surgical centers.”)

Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt is the first major Supreme Court decision on abortion since the 1992 Planned Parenthood v. Casey.

Let’s Be Perfectly Clear

> Texas’ HB 2 was never about protecting women’s health.
It was always about ending access to abortion!

> Texas’ HB 2 is only one of the many anti-choice laws extremists have already passed in states across our nation. These laws are about obliterating abortion rights and access to birth control – nothing less.

The Republican National Platform includes a plank dedicated to opposing abortion.

(From the 2012 Platform: “Faithful to the “self-evident” truths enshrined in the Declaration of Independence, we assert the sanctity of human life and affirm that the unborn child has a fundamental individual right to life which cannot be infringed. We support a human life amendment to the Constitution and endorse legislation to make clear that the Fourteenth Amendment’s protections apply to unborn children.” )

We Have Only One Choice!

We must continue to fight on every front:
from County governments to State Governments to the Federal Government.

Every Election Matters!

> We must now go on the offensive and fight for a Country where women’s comprehensive rights are valued and guaranteed!

AN IMPORTANT READ: An Overview of Abortion Laws

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BREAKING NEWS: Santorum Couldn’t Stop Glick

By catherine,

Guess who was in Albany on Tuesday?
Anti-choice extremist, former Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum!!!

You remember Rick – he believes that the Supreme Court decisions allowing married and single women the right to birth control were wrong and should be overturned.

Why Albany?  Santorum thinks New York is vulnerable. He was here joining with others to egg on anti-choice legislators to oppose bills protecting a woman’s right to choose.

But that didn’t stop Assemblywoman Deborah Glick who introduced a bill, A 6221, that would guarantee New York women the full constitutional protection of Roe v. Wade – a protection sorely missing from New York law.

We desperately need to protect New York women from the horrific attacks being waged against us in states across the country and in Washington D.C. The passage of A 6221 is the way to do that!

New York’s Assembly is leading the way.

Call your Assembly member and tell her/him that you support A 6221.

Then let’s make sure the Senate follows!

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Do They Really Think They Can Fool Women?

By catherine,

Candidates’ OTC Birth Control Plans are a Raw Deal

This election season, many candidates, particularly Republicans, from Virginia to Colorado, are trying to run from their war on women voting records by coming out in support of over-the-counter (OTC) birth control. Make no mistake, they are targeting middle and low income women – people who would not vote for them anyway!

Their proposal might seem like they suddenly understand the need for increasing contraceptive access, but don’t be fooled!

These candidates just want women to pay for the full cost of their birth control, with no help from insurance coverage.These candidates are helping insurance companies, not women. (Note, they are not suggesting doing away with insurance coverage for Viagra.)

These candidates aren’t supporting women’s reproductive health — they’re attacking it.

According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), out-of-pocket costs prevent many women from consistently accessing birth control, and the most effective – and most expensive – methods, such as the intrauterine device (IUD), always require a visit to a health care provider. (So what about a doctor’s visit is OTC?)

Just to make this point even clearer, not one birth control manufacturer has sought FDA approval for OTC birth control — so these so-called improvements would result in middle and low income earning women being without contraceptive access because they can’t afford it!

This OTC proposal comes from the same candidates who have pushed to restrict access to comprehensive reproductive health care. These same politicians have placed repealing the Affordable Care Act which would cover contraception as preventative care and cutting back on public clinic funding at the top of their agendas. These candidates want: NO preventative care coverage for annual exams, Pap smears, or contraception. 

OTC contraception has a place in efforts to expand reproductive choice. People need access to services like emergency contraception on demand. But putting birth control in front of the counter is only the first step to ensuring comprehensive access. Women need policy makers who support a full spectrum of reproductive health decisions. Instead of doing away with insurance coverage for contraceptives, we need to expand it to cover Plan B, a very expensive OTC emergency contraceptive.

Women, don’t be fooled. Don’t let these candidates stick women with the bill!

by Olivia Cappello

 

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Hope Rises from the Rubble

By catherine,

On May 23rd, Elliot Rodger murdered six people and wounded 13 more, at random, in Isla Vista, near the University of California Santa Barbara. The supposed reason: Women. In a 135-plus page, misogynist, autobiographical manifesto and multiple YouTube videos, he blamed all women and their disdain and sexual rejection of him for his rampage. His ideas are terrifying.

Yes, Elliot Rodger’s manifesto is extreme and thereby easy to dismiss as the rantings of a madman. But …“reading his manifesto, you can make out, through the distortions of his raging mind, the outlines of mainstream American cultural values”….”Rodger was crazier and more violent than most people, but his beliefs are on a continuum with misogynistic, class-based ideas that are held by many.” Sasha Weiss, The New Yorker

Amazingly, though, Rodger’s horrific actions and madman rantings have given rise to something wonderful and cause for hope: #YesAllWomen.  Women have again found their voices.

For years many of us have struggled to find ways to get a broader spectrum of women involved in our struggle, the women’s rights struggle. This is not about humanism, but about feminism.  Well, Elliot Rodger’s distorted views and violent random acts succeeded. He galvanized us in a way that has been long in coming.

“In response [to Rodger], the hashtag #YesAllWomen began to race across Twitter TWTR +1.48%. By [yesterday] afternoon, the tag had been used more than 1.8 million times according to tracking service Topsy. It linked stories of sexual violence, sexual harassment, and sexual fear across the networked world, as women reacted viscerally to both the horror of the crime and its commonality in their experience – at least in its motivation. The hashtag was a harsh and unsubtle pushback against the pat and simplistic “not all men” rejoinder so often flung about when feminism threatens male sensitivities. And frankly, #YesAllWomen  was a vital moment in the still-growing power of loosely organized and decentralized feminist networks that are changing the landscape of social culture using platforms like Twitter and Facebook.” Tom Watson, Forbes

Please join the movement #YesAllWomen. Put it in your search engine and see what comes up.

There is another great feminist power field to tell you about: Know Your IX, founded by female college students who have been rape victims and were denied the protection guaranteed by Title IX.  Visit  KnowYourIX.org and/or like them on Facebook. These women are shaking it up.

I want to yell, “THANK YOU” from the rooftops to all these women.

Read the following articles and share.
The Power of #YesAllWomen, by Sasha Weiss, The New Yorker

Why ‘#YesAllWomen’ Matters — And Why It’s Not Hacktivism, by Tom Watson, Forbes

#YesAllWomen reveals the constant barrage of sexism that women face, by Jessica Valenti, The Guardian

Elliot Rodger was a misogynist – but is that all he was?, by Hadley Freeman, The Guardian

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The Demise of Abortion Rights in New York State

By catherine,

The end of abortion rights in New York State is coming, and not with a bang but with a whimper. Its demise is already in full swing. The cause is the election of politicians like Jeff Klein and Michael Kaplowitz who claimed to be pro-choice advocates to get our votes but then aligned themselves with anti-choice extremists immediately upon their election. The deceptive tactics of the Kleins and Kaplowitzs are effectively facilitating the erosion of a woman’s right to choose right here, right now.
These elected officials – Klein to the New York State Senate and Kaplowitz to the Westchester County Legislature – lied to the pro-choice community to get elected, and then consciously turned their backs on their constituents for their own political gain.

Why? Because New York State is a pro-choice state with the vast majority of voters supporting comprehensive reproductive rights, which includes abortion. Eighty percent of New Yorkers support the passage of the Reproductive Health Act “which is aimed at protecting reproductive freedom for women, ensuring a woman’s right to make private health care decisions regarding pregnancy. At least two-thirds of voters from every party, region and demographic group support it, with the exception of self-identified conservatives who support it 64-29 percent.” Sienna Research Institute

Decisions Made for Personal Gain, at Our Expense
Jeff Klein, immediately after being re-elected to the New York State Senate to represent SD 34 (Pelham and part of Mount Vernon and the Bronx), aligned himself with the Republican anti-choice extremist Dean Skelos. Klein claimed it was an act of independence. In reality, it was a power-grab by a self-absorbed, egocentric politician who thought it was more important to enhance his own personal power than to stand up for women who elected him and make up his constituency.
Did you know that it was Senator Klein who refused to bring the 10-point Women’s Equality Agenda to the floor of the Senate for a vote – just because anti-choice Skelos did not approve?

Unfortunately, Klein would rather stand with Skelos than with the women of New York—and Klein doesn’t care that by doing so, he, Klein, is empowering and advancing an anti-choice agenda.

Let’s remember that Jeff Klein, when he served as a NYS Assemblyman, used WCLA – Choice Matters and the issue of Choice to win his primary for New York State Senate. Klein swore then, as he has every election since, that nothing would stand between him and fighting for a woman’s right to comprehensive reproductive rights – which includes the right to have an abortion. Clearly, he lied.

And then we have Michael Kaplowitz who was just re-elected to represent CLD 4 (New Castle and parts of Yorktown, and Somers). Kaplowitz has had his eye on being Westchester County Board Chairman for years. So, as soon as he was re-elected, Kaplowitz went to the anti-choice legislators with whom he had voted to pass the 2012 budget that gutted funding to community health centers, food pantries and senior nutrition programs, and dramatically raised the cost of childcare, to negotiate his deal. Kaplowitz agreed to support Jim Maisano (who voted against ensuring safe access to reproductive health care clinics) for the position of Westchester County Board Vice – Chairman and to appoint Sheila Marcotte (who opposes abortion rights even in cases of rape, incest or to save the life of the woman) as Budget Committee Chairperson in exchange for making Kaplowitz the new Westchester County Board Chairman. 

It is important to understand that the Budget Committee is, in fact, the most important committee for women’s rights. The departments that relate to women and families comprise a large portion of the county budget. The Budget Chairperson decides what will appear on the agenda and who will be heard.

Kaplowitz single-handedly empowered the anti-choice minority on the Board at the expense of women throughout Westchester County. Now this minority can work with Westchester’s right-to-life extremist County Executive who has already imprinted an anti-choice agenda on his administration – ending sex education funding, receiving awards for abstinence-only program support and vetoing the most basic of rights, safe access to reproductive health care. Kaplowitz, personally, has empowered this County Executive zealot, Rob Astorino, who called abortion “a straw man” as he prepares to run for governor.

Call to Action
These men – Klein and Kaplowitz – are just two examples of politicians who have betrayed our trust, pretending to be our allies while working against us. They made promises to the pro-choice majority and are reneging. They are hurting us on the local and state levels, and they think we are not smart enough to see through their charade.

But I know they’re wrong because we have you — and it’s your commitment, your unwavering dedication to protecting women’s health and rights that will make the difference this year. Please, make your gift right now.

  Filed under: Pro-Choice Articles, Updates
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Eden Foods Doesn’t Want to Pay for Employees’ BC

By catherine,

Special Thanks to Nita, Shaunna, Kat, Malinda, and Karin, the UltraViolet team!
Sign the Petition at the Bottom!
The Boycott is having an affect.

“Soy milk. Organic beans. Gluten-free pasta. A radical agenda to ban birth control coverage for their employees.

Eden Foods is one of the country’s major organic foods companies, and their products can be purchased at Whole Foods, local markets, and coops across the country. They claim they stand for “purity in food,” and now, they also stand for a right-wing crusade against birth control. The company is suing the Obama Administration over the rule that insurance companies must cover birth control under the new healthcare law. Why? Because as CEO Michael Potter put it, they believe that “these procedures [birth control] almost always involve immoral and unnatural practices.”1

That’s right. Because Eden Foods’s CEO is ideologically opposed to birth control, the company thinks they have the right to dictate to all their employees what health care they will have access to. That doesn’t just affect their employees. It’s a dangerous precedent that they are asking the court to set for all workers going forward. But progressive-minded people make up a huge portion of Eden’s customers–people who are likely to think that a boss shouldn’t be dictating their employees’ private health care decisions. And the CEO has already said “we’re getting a lot of feedback” and that the push back against them on social media “is a big deal.”2

Employers have no right to interfere with the reproductive health care of their female employees. If we all speak out now to add to the outrage, we can show Eden Foods and other businesses that are watching the controversy that their lawsuit is bad for publicity and bad for their bottom line.

Sign the petition to Eden Foods’s CEO, Michael Potter.

Making sure employees’ health insurance covers birth control matters:

  • 1 in 3 women has had trouble affording birth control.3
  • Women who had better access to the pill earned 8% more than those who didn’t by the time they were 50.4
  • Young women who can obtain the pill are 12% more likely to enroll in college.5
  • 99% of women who’ve had sex have used birth control.6

Michael Potter and Eden Foods are spreading lies, like claiming that certain companies are already exempted from the birth control mandate and that some religions are exempted and others aren’t.7 Neither of these is true. The truth is, only houses of worship are exempt, and religiously affiliated organizations like hospitals and schools can push the cost of birth control coverage onto the insurer.8

And Potter’s reason for suing? “Because I’m a man, number one and it’s really none of my business what women do.”9 But by entering this lawsuit, Potter is making it not just his business but every other employer in America’s business what kind of health care their female employees get.

Employers can’t flout laws just because they don’t like them. Allowing employers to dictate whether or not their employees have access to birth control is wrong and un-American.

We need to let Eden Foods and their CEO, Michael Potter, know that trying to deny their employees basic health care like birth control is bad for business. Sign the petition to Potter right away.”

Add your name.

Thanks for speaking out,

Nita, Shaunna, Kat, Malinda, and Karin, the UltraViolet team

Sources:
1. Eden Foods doubles down in birth control flap, Salon, April 15, 2013

2. Ibid.

3. Survey: Nearly Three in Four Voters in America Support Fully Covering Prescription Birth Control, Planned Parenthood, October 12, 2010

4. Women Who Took the Pill Had an 8 Percent Higher Income by Age 50, Yahoo! News, March 6, 2012

5. The Social and Economic Benefits of Women’s Ability to Determine Whether and When to Have Children, Guttmacher Institute, March 2013

6. Women Who Use Birth Control Are the 99 Percent, Mother Jones, February 10, 2012

7.Statement from the President of Eden Foods, Eden Foods, April 17, 2013

8. Contraception Mandate Clarified To Accommodate Religious Groups, Obama Administration Announces, Huffington Post, February 25, 2013

9. Eden Foods doubles down in birth control flap, Salon, April 15, 2013

2. Ibid.

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“You Deserve Rape”

By catherine,

“You Deserve Rape,” was the text of a poster held by an open air preacher. This was his response to April being Sexual Assault Awareness Month. Sounds much like Todd Akin on the subject of rape. Below is the text of the article from the BuzzFeed

DeserveRapeenhanced-buzz-25878-1366910582-10

No, Seriously, This Guy Is Holding A “You Deserve Rape” Sign

UPDATE: The “open air preacher” holding the sign has responded to online criticism. In case that wasn’t enough, sign creator “Brother Dean Samuel’s” Twitter feed confirms his somewhat misogynistic ideology. (via the Arizona Daily Wildcat)

A University of Arizona student sparked outrage Tuesday by holding up a sign reading, “You Deserve Rape” and preaching that women who dress like “whores” bring rape upon themselves in protest to a sexual assault awareness event being held that night.

Dean Saxton, a junior who regularly preaches on the University of Arizona campus under the name “Brother Dean Samuel,” told the Arizona Daily Wildcat that “his sermon was meant to convey that ‘if you dress like a whore, act like a whore, you’re probably going to get raped.'” Saxton decided to make the sign and deliver his sermon on Tuesday in opposition to a “Take Back the Night” event planned for Tuesday night and because April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month.

“I think that girls that dress and act like it,” Saxton told the Daily Wildcat, “they should realize that they do have partial responsibility, because I believe that they’re pretty much asking for it.”

Despite widespread anger from students and faculty, the university’s administration did not remove Saxton or his sign. In response to a request for comment, Kendal Washington White, interim dean of students, said, “We find [Saxton’s actions] to be vulgar and vile. However, it is protected speech. He has yet to, at this point, violate the student code of conduct.”

 

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