Last week the North Carolina state House of Representatives passed a health education bill requiring middle school students to be taught in sex-ed classes that abortion is a cause of pre-term births in future pregnancies.
The bill, Senate Bill 132 , requires an addition to the current health education program in the form of information on risks for premature births. The bill focuses on teaching children that having an abortion will cause pre-term complications in later pregnancies, though the medical justification behind such a link is debated. Other risk factors have been added as well, including "smoking, alcohol consumption, illicit drug use, and inadequate prenatal care." The original bill did not include this list of other factors and used the term "cause" instead of "risk" when talking about abortion.
House Democrats have opposed the bill on the grounds that the medical evidence is not conclusive and that the topic may not be appropriate for seventh graders. House Republicans cite the existence of education about other sexual health topics as a counter-argument and point to a study from the North Carolina Child Fatality Task Force as justification of the claim.
According to the bill, current health education in North Carolina involves an abstinence-only program and aspiration towards a "mutually faithful monogamous heterosexual relationship in the context of marriage" for all.
10/13/2015 EEOC Launches Hollywood Gender Discrimination Probe - The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has contacted several women directors in Hollywood in an effort to determine whether legal intervention is necessary to disrupt the industry's discriminatory hiring practices.
In a letter sent to some 50 women filmmakers, the EEOC - which is responsible for protecting individuals from employment discrimination based on sex, race, color, religion and national origin through enforcement of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 - requested interviews with them to "learn more about the gender-related issues" women behind the camera face in both the film and television industries.
In May, following the release of a study by the San Diego State University Center for the Study of Women in Television in Film revealing only 7 percent of 2014's 250 top-grossing movies were helmed by women, the ACLU of Southern California and the national ACLU Women's Rights Project urged state and federal rights agencies to investigate Hollywood's failure to hire equal numbers of women. . . .
10/12/2015 Report Finds Texas' HB2 Increases Abortion Wait Times - A new report released by the University of Texas at Austin, Texas Policy Evaluation Project found patients seeking abortions in Texas have experienced an increase in wait times since the passage of HB2, the 2013 Texas omnibus anti-abortion bill that attempts to cut off abortion access by requiring abortion providers in the state to fulfill medically unnecessary ambulatory surgical center requirements and secure hospital admitting privileges.
More than half of 42 clinics providing abortion in Texas have been forced to shut their doors since HB2 passed two years ago, leading Texas women to wait up to 20 days for a first consult at one of the surviving 18 reproductive health clinics operating in the state, the second most populous in the nation. . . .
10/9/2015 Federal Judge Orders Anti-Abortion Group to Cede Footage to NAF - On Tuesday, a federal judge ruled that anti-abortion group Center for Medical Progress (CMP) and its leader David Daleidan must turn over all previously unreleased "sting" videos and outtakes of National Abortion Federation (NAF) meetings the group obtained surreptitiously as part of a smear campaign against the abortion provider.
U.S. . . .