Operation Rescue Director Convicted for HS Demonstration
Flip Benham, director of the anti-abortion group Operation Rescue National, was sentenced to a year in jail by Lynchburg, Virginia Circuit Judge Richard Miller for organizing a religious demonstration at a public school. Benham led more than 150 Liberty University students in an anti-abortion demonstration outside E.C. Glass High School. Groups stood outside the school, blocking the paths to the entrances and exits, waving signs and handing out religious and anti-abortion propaganda to the students.
Police officers testified that the demonstration posed a threat to public safety and that Benham refused to leave when he was asked to do so. Benham insists that he had every right to be there.
Benham and Liberty University student organizer, John Reyes, face a year in jail, with six months possible suspension for good behavior. Jeff Brown, another Liberty student and demonstrator, was also convicted of trespassing and will serve six months in jail, with fifteen days suspended.
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. . . .