On Thursday, two dozen masked men stormed a popular gay bar in Moscow and beat patrons, injuring 10 and sending four to the hospital. The attack happened during a "Coming Out Day" party, and the attackers mostly targeted women. Three women and one man were hospitalized.
New York Times reports that Nikolai Alekseyev, the founder of the gay pride movement in Moscow, said that this attack indicates that anti-gay groups are 'becoming increasingly aggressive.' He said, "they believe that they won't be caught and won't be punished for this."
Homosexuality was decriminalized in Russia in 1993; however, the attack coincides with a year full of new anti-gay legislation. This year, three cities have passed laws criminalizing 'homosexual propaganda,' and the Russian Orthodox Church has endorsed that legislation at the national level. A measure banning gay pride parades in Moscow for a century, until 2112, was upheld by the highest court in August.
Media Resources: NY Times 10/12/12; Huffington Post 10/12/12; Jezebel 10/14/12l
10/31/2014 Federal Judge Exempts Another Catholic University from Birth Control Coverage - A federal judge ruled Tuesday that Ave Maria University, a Catholic university in Florida, does not have to comply with federal rules meant to ensure that covered employees can exercise their right to obtain birth control at no cost.
The Affordable Care Act requires all new health insurance plans to cover all FDA-approved contraceptives - such as the pill, emergency contraceptives, and IUDs - without charging co-pays, deductibles or co-insurance. . . .
10/31/2014 Women of Color in Tennessee Are United in Opposition to Amendment 1 - Just days before the general election in Tennessee, a coalition of community leaders, clergy, and advocates led a press conference encouraging women of color to vote no on Amendment 1, a dangerous and far-reaching measure on the state's ballot.
SisterReach, a grassroots organization focused on "empowering, organizing, and mobilizing women and girls in the community around their reproductive and sexual health to make informed decisions about themselves," organized the press conference "to call attention to the unique concerns Black and poor communities throughout Shelby County and across the state of Tennessee face on a daily basis" and to emphasize how the upcoming election "could further limit [black women's] reproductive, economic, political, and social autonomy."
"We assemble today to impress upon black women and women of color, many of whom are heads of households, to get out and vote," said SisterReacher Founder and CEO Cherisse Scott at the event.
SisterReach has been educating voters about the particularly dangerous impact of Amendment 1 on women of color. . . .
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. . . .