Last week the state of Arizona launched "A Woman's Right to Know," a part of the Arizona Department of Health Services website that is designed to discourage women from having an abortion. The website is part of Arizona's recent legislation to restrict access to abortion 20 weeks after a woman's last menstrual period, or 18 weeks into gestation.
The website provides a misleading list of the potential complications of an abortion procedure, along with detailed drawings of fetal development through an entire pregnancy. The website also provides lists for adoption services and diaper banks. One section of the website addresses risks of childbirth in attempt to provide a different perspective. However, the website lists "death" as a complication of abortion (1 in 11,000 after 21 weeks) and "rarely, death" as a complication of childbirth (1 out of 6,897).
Representative Kimberly Yee (R), who sponsored the legislation, hopes the website will discourage women from seeking an abortion. According to the Arizona Daily Sun, Yee "a staunch foe of all abortions, acknowledged she believes the website will convince some women considering an abortion not to go through with it." Yee proposed the website under the guise of providing women with the information necessary to give "informed consent."
Arizona's ban of abortions 20 weeks after a normal period is the most restrictive in the nation. It was challenged in court by three obstetrician-gynecologists from Arizona. After the District Court in Phoenix ruled the law constitutional, the doctors appealed to the 9th Circuit Court.
Media Resources: Arizona Daily Sun 11/26/12; ThinkProgress 11/26/12; Arizona Department of Health Services "A Woman's Right to Know" 11/26/12; Feminist Newswire 11/5/12; Guttmacher Institute 8/2011
10/31/2014 Federal Judge Exempts Another Catholic University from Birth Control Coverage - A federal judge ruled Tuesday that Ave Maria University, a Catholic university in Florida, does not have to comply with federal rules meant to ensure that covered employees can exercise their right to obtain birth control at no cost.
The Affordable Care Act requires all new health insurance plans to cover all FDA-approved contraceptives - such as the pill, emergency contraceptives, and IUDs - without charging co-pays, deductibles or co-insurance. . . .
10/31/2014 Women of Color in Tennessee Are United in Opposition to Amendment 1 - Just days before the general election in Tennessee, a coalition of community leaders, clergy, and advocates led a press conference encouraging women of color to vote no on Amendment 1, a dangerous and far-reaching measure on the state's ballot.
SisterReach, a grassroots organization focused on "empowering, organizing, and mobilizing women and girls in the community around their reproductive and sexual health to make informed decisions about themselves," organized the press conference "to call attention to the unique concerns Black and poor communities throughout Shelby County and across the state of Tennessee face on a daily basis" and to emphasize how the upcoming election "could further limit [black women's] reproductive, economic, political, and social autonomy."
"We assemble today to impress upon black women and women of color, many of whom are heads of households, to get out and vote," said SisterReacher Founder and CEO Cherisse Scott at the event.
SisterReach has been educating voters about the particularly dangerous impact of Amendment 1 on women of color. . . .
10/30/2014 Medication Abortion Access Threatened by Oklahoma Court Ruling - An Oklahoma state district court judge has refused to block a state law restricting medication abortion, clearing the way for the law to go into affect on November 1.
The Oklahoma Coalition for Reproductive Justice, together with a local abortion clinic in Tulsa, challenged HB 2684 in September, arguing that the law was an unconstitutional restriction on non-surgical abortion in the earliest weeks of pregnancy. . . .