Anti-Abortion Extremist Pleads Guilty in Internet Case
Nicholas Morency pled guilty in U.S. District Court to charges of “intimidating people providing reproductive health services,” facing a maximum sentence of 6 years imprisonment and a $350,000 fine. Prosecuted under the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act (FACE), Morency operated a website in January 1999 and offered a $1.5 million reward for the murder of abortion providers. He specifically targeted a Kansas physician by initials and mentioned groups like NARAL and Planned Parenthood. Additionally, Morency posted messages to Planned Parenthood’s online bulletin board inviting people to his site. When the National Abortion Federation (NAF) discovered Morency’s site, they reported it to the Justice Department, who shut the site down just 24 hours later. NAF’s President Vicki Saporta praised the FBI and the Task Force on Violence Against Reproductive Health Care Providers for their quick response and added, “We hope we can count on the Task Force under John Ashcroft to do the same.”
FMF’s National Clinic Access Project was instrumental in passing FACE, and its most recent research shows that 35 percent of reproductive health clinics nationwide experienced “threatening anti-abortion speech,” including internet harassment.
Media Resources: Kaiser Daily Reproductive Health Report - March 12, 2001 and The Bergen Record and Philadelphia Inquirer - March 10, 2001 and National Abortion Foundation Press Release – March 9, 2001
8/31/2015 Chicago Activists Continue Hunger Strike to Save Predominately Black Public High School - Chicago residents have entered the second week of their hunger strike protesting the closure of Dyett High School, in the predominately African-American Bronzeville neighborhood located on the South Side of Chicago.
Parents and community members are calling on the Chicago Board of Education to keep Dyett - the only open-enrollment, neighborhood school in its area - open and accept a community plan to revitalize the school with a focus on science and green technology. . . .
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. . . .