Proposition 8 Oral Arguments Heard in Supreme Court
Today the Supreme Court heard oral arguments weighing the constitutionality of Proposition 8, the California ban on same sex marriage.
The Supreme Court heard arguments in the case Hollingsworth, Dennis, et al. v. Perry, Kristin M., et al. Arguments lasted for approximately an hour and twenty minutes, at which point the Supreme Court Justices appeared reluctant on making a decision. They are expected to release a full opinion in June. The Feminist Majority Foundation and the National Organization for Women (NOW) filed an amicus brief in favor of overturning Proposition 8. The brief was written by Michael Rips and Rebecca Edelson of Steptoe and Johnson, LLP. Tomorrow the Supreme Court will hear arguments on the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which only recognizes marriage as between one man and one woman.
Thousands of people descended on the Supreme Court to rally as part of the United for Marriage coalition of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, Human Rights Campaign and other LGBT advocacy and sympathetic groups , including Terry O'Neill, President of NOW. Other speakers included couples and families impacted by the laws, allies from the sports community, and politicians.
Media Resources: CSPAN 3/26/2013; Huffington Post 3/26/2013
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. . . .