Connerly Will Not Challenge Colorado's Rejection of Affirmative Action Ban
Ward Connerly a California businessman whose efforts have led to affirmative action bans in California, Michigan, Washington, and Nebraska may cease his nationwide anti-affirmative action campaign. Connerly told the Colorado Independent in a phone interview that he will focus his time on other issues, particularly prison reform.
Colorado rejected a proposed state constitutional ban (Amendment 46, see PDF) on affirmative action by a slim margin of 51% to 49%. The ban would have prevented taking race and gender into account in public employment, public contracting, and public education. According to the Associated Press, the measure's language implied that it would end discrimination, but failed to mention the proposal's effect on affirmative action programs. In an effort to educate voters of the potential impact of Amendment 46, the Feminist Majority Foundation's Choices Campus Program undertook a massive voter education campaign in the state.
According to the Associated Press, Connerly has not ruled out another try in Colorado or other states. However, in his interview with the Colorado Independent, Connerly implied that his focus would shift to prison reform. "I don't want to mislead you. I don't want to say I am no longer going to be interested in race equality in our public policies," he said. "I think this whole business of what we are doing to people who are incarcerated is far more pressing."
Media Resources: Associated Press 11/8/2008, Colorado Independent 11/7/2008; Feminist Majority Foundation; Colorado Secretary of State
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. . . .