At least 33 Iranian women activists were arrested yesterday during a peaceful protest in Tehran. The women are members of a group called Mourning Mothers, which was formed after the widely publicized death of Neda Agha-Soltan last summer. Members of the group are mothers of protestors who have been killed, detained, or are missing. According to the Straits Times, the women regularly gather in the park where they were arrested to protest, typically wearing black as a sign of mourning.
According to the Mourning Mothers website, an unidentified witness said, "They would not allow anyone to even sit on the benches or congregate...After about 70 mothers entered the park, security forces engaged them and started chasing them, grabbing them, and forcing them into police vans. They used a lot of violence and insults in the process," reported CNN.
Arrests continue in Iran against women's activists. In December, Nobel Peace Prize laureate Shirin Ebadi's sister; a professor in dentistry, Noushin Ebadi; Mansoureh Shojaee, a founder of the One Million Signatures campaign for women's equality in Iran; and Morteza Kazemian, a journalist, were arrested by Ministry of Intelligence agents. Somayeh Rashidi, also with the One Million Signatures Campaign, was also targeted with a search of her home and a summons to court.
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. . . .
10/30/2014 UPS Switches Pregnant Worker Policy Ahead of Supreme Court Case - The United Parcel Service (UPS) is changing its policy on light duty assignments for pregnant workers, even though the company will stand by its refusal to extend accommodations to a former employee in an upcoming Supreme Court case.
UPS announced on Monday in a memo to employees, and in a brief filed with the US Supreme Court, that the company will begin offering temporary, light-duty positions to pregnant workers on January 1, 2015. . . .
10/30/2014 North Dakota Medical Students Speak Out Against Measure 1 - Medical students at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences are asking North Dakotans to vote no on Measure 1, a personhood measure on the state ballot this fall.
The students issued published a letter in the Grand Forks Herald stating that they opposed Measure 1 in part because they are against "the government's taking control of the personal health care decisions of its citizens." Nearly 60 UND School of Medicine students signed the letter, citing concerns over the "very broad and ambiguous language" used in the proposed amendment, which has no regard for serious and life-threatening medical situations such as ectopic pregnancies.
Measure 1 would change the North Dakota state constitution to create an "inalienable right to life" for humans "at any stage of development" - including the moment of fertilization and conception. . . .