United Nations Finds US Not Combating Racism Effectively
The United Nations (UN) Committee on Elimination of Racial Discrimination called attention to the wide racial disparities that continue to exist in the US. The Committee concluded March 7 after finding the US lacking in its pursuit of the end of racial discrimination. The Committee's report on the US criticized persistent racial profiling, the dismantling of affirmative action, inadequate access to health care, and the racial disparities in the US criminal justice system. Kiani was still stoned to death on July 5, 2007. Ebrahimi's death was stayed due to the public outcry, and last week the Iranian judiciary amnesty commission released her from prison. funny picturesfunny imagesfunny photosfunny animal picturesfunny dog picturesfunny cat picturesfunny gifs
The UN also condemned the racial inequities in reproductive and sexual health care in the US. The Center for Reproductive Rights reports that that the Committee urged the US to reduce its high rates of maternal and infant mortality, to decrease the rate of unplanned pregnancies, and to stop the spread of HIV/AIDS. The Reproductive Health Reality Check pointed out that women of color have significantly worse sexual health than white women.
Nancy Northup, president of the Center for Reproductive Rights, said, "We applaud the Committee for addressing the unconscionable racial disparities in maternal deaths, unintended pregnancies, and HIV-AIDS. It's time for the U.S. to stop making excuses for racial inequalities and take responsibility for ensuring access to quality reproductive health care for all women in America."
The Center for Reproductive Rights reports that this is the first time the Committee has mentioned family planning in reviews of countries, emphasizing the problems in the US.
Media Resources: Committee on Elimination of Racial Discrimination 03/07/08; Center for Reproductive Rights 03/07/08; RH Reality Check 03/10/08
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. . . .
8/26/2015 Saudi Women Prepare to Vote for the First Time - The fight for gender equality is making slow but notable progress in Saudi Arabia, where women will be allowed to vote for the first time in upcoming December elections.
This shift in Saudi law came in 2011, when a royal decree announced that women would be allowed to vote and run in local elections beginning in December of 2015. . . .