Pro-Life America Network Director Nominated to MS Board of Health
Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant (R) announced that he has nominated Terri Herring to the state's Board of Health Wednesday. Bryant nominated her because she has "committed her life to women's health care and the right to life." Herring is a director of the Pro-Life America Network in addition to being president of the Mississippi Choose Life Advisory Committee.
Mississippi state law requires that the Board of Health must be comprised of five currently licensed physicians and six individuals with a background or interest in public health. Herring was nominated as the latter. Her appointment, if confirmed, would have a six year term.
Using a state's Board of Health to control abortion regulations is a strategy that has been successful in the past. The Virginia Board of Health passed Targeted Regulations of Abortion Providers (TRAP) Laws earlier this year that are harsh regulations that could force abortion providers in Virginia to meet the building codes of new hospitals or face closure. Last year, the Kansas Board of Healing Arts voted to revoke the license of abortion provider Dr. Ann Neuhaus over allegations that she did not provide adequate mental health exams on patients she referred to the late Dr. George Tiller for late abortions. Dr. Neuhaus maintains that she provided proper exams, and critics of the decision have said that the investigation and subsequent ruling were the result of anti-abortion sentiments.
Media Resources: Feminist Newswire 1/2/13, 6/26/12; NBC News 3/28/13; The Mississippi Press 3/28/13; WLOX 3/28/13
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. . . .