NJ Senate Passes Bill to Restore Funding to Clinics
Yesterday the New Jersey Senate passed a bill by a vote of 26 to 13 that would restore $7.5 million to the state's 58 women's health clinics. Last year, Governor Chris Christie (R) cut all family planning funding from the state's budget and vetoed the attempts of the state Senate and Assembly to restore it. The Senate bill will now move to the state Assembly for a vote.
Senator Loretta Weinberg (D-Teaneck), who is sponsoring the bill, stated that six clinics have closed since Governor Chris Christie (R) cut funding last year. Weinberg stated, "Either you are for underserved women having access to proper health care, primary care physicians and yes, birth control, (or you're not). We are in the second decade of the 21st century. The fight over poor women's access to birth control I thought was finished a few generations ago."
Governor Christie said that he believes that Weinberg "is mischaracterizing women's access to health care," claiming that since women already have access to federally funded clinics, state funding is not necessary. Nevertheless, Christie announced that he would consider the bill as part of a larger budget deal.
Media Resources: National Partnership for Women and Families 5/24/11; Feminist Daily Newswire 5/23/11; Associated Press 5/23/11
8/31/2015 Chicago Activists Continue Hunger Strike to Save Predominately Black Public High School - Chicago residents have entered the second week of their hunger strike protesting the closure of Dyett High School, in the predominately African-American Bronzeville neighborhood located on the South Side of Chicago.
Parents and community members are calling on the Chicago Board of Education to keep Dyett - the only open-enrollment, neighborhood school in its area - open and accept a community plan to revitalize the school with a focus on science and green technology. . . .
8/28/2015 Alaska Court Protects Abortion Access for Low-Income Women - The Alaska Superior Court struck down a state law yesterday that would have severely limited abortion access for low-income women in Alaska.
The state's Superior Court also struck down a Department of Health and Social Services regulation that placed narrow specifications on Medicaid coverage for abortions, requiring that Medicaid-funded abortions be determined by a physician to be "medically necessary." Last year, the Center for Reproductive Rights, the American Civil Liberties Union, and Planned Parenthood sued on behalf of the Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest, claiming that the narrow definition of "medically necessary" arbitrarily established conditions designed to restrict the ability of low-income women to access abortion services.
The law was temporarily blocked last July by an Alaskan state court judge.
Superior Court Judge John Suddock ordered yesterday that the state be blocked from implementing this regulation, ruling that it placed an undue burden on low-income women seeking abortion services in Alaska.
"By providing health care to all poor Alaskans except women who need abortions, the challenged regulation violates the state constitutional guarantee of 'equal rights, opportunities, and protection under the law'," the ruling read.
"We applaud the superior court for striing down these cruel restrictions on women's health and rights that violate the Alaska Constitution," said Chris Charbonneau, CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest and the Hawaiian Islands. . . .