Personhood Measure Will Be on Colorado's Next Ballot
Anti-abortion activists have collected enough signatures to include a "personhood" measure on Colorado's next state ballot in November 2014, even though Colorado voters have twice rejected personhood initiatives.
This latest initiative will appear on the ballot as Amendment 67. It is worded misleadingly, not mentioning the word abortion. The measure would amend the definition of "person" and "child" in the Colorado Criminal Code and Wrongful Death act to include "unborn human beings." Supporters claim that the measure will help pregnant women get justice if crimes committed against them cause them to miscarry. However, Colorado already has a law, the Crimes Against Pregnant Women Act, that addresses that very issue.
Women's rights activists worry the language in Amendment 67 could lead to investigations of any woman who has an abortion or miscarries. "The 2014 ballot initiative, again, has slightly different language than years past in an effort to deceive the voters," said Cathy Alderman of Planned Parenthood Votes Colorado. "But it has the same dangerous outcomes which would lead to more government intrusion in our personal lives, including: getting into our medical records to investigate miscarriages, dictating the kinds of birth control we use, and interfering with medical decisions made by women with their doctors in treating fertility problems."
Media Resources: ThinkProgress 10/15/13; Fox31 Denver 10/14/13; Colorado Secretary of State News Release 10/14/13; Huffington Post 5/3/13; Planned Parenthood Votes Colorado
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. . . .