OH Attorney General Calls for Processing of Rape Kits
Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine is calling for state police departments to send all rape kits to the Bureau of Criminal Investigation. He is also encouraging police to send thousands of unprocessed rape kits from previous kits to the crime lab and indicated that four workers will be hired to assist with processing the rape kits.
DeWine stated, "It's going to mean that victims will have their rape kit tested. That victims will be able to be assured that we as a society are doing everything to catch their assailant. Even if we can't catch their assailant today, we may be able to catch their assailant five years from now because we tested the rape kit today."
According to DeWine, approximately 50 percent of the rape kits are not tested. Since 1991, 6,184 rape kits had been collected; however, only 2,599 had undergone forensic testing. Rape kits include biological evidence from the crime - clothing fibers, bodily fluids, such as saliva and semen, and hair - and are often useful in identifying sexual assault and rape assailants.
Media Resources: Cleveland Plain Dealer 12/5/11; Columbus Dispatch 12/5/11
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. . . .