Court Tries to Limit Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners’ Testimony in Rape Trials
The weight of Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners’ (SANE) testimony in trials of rape is in question, as three judges in Virginia have ruled that SANE nurses may not draw conclusions regarding whether or not the sex that occurred was consensual or forced and may only testify about injuries noticed during sexual assault examinations. An appeals court in Pennsylvania overturned a rape conviction and ruled SANE nurses could not testify as experts in any case. Sexual Assault advocates and SANE nurses are enraged, as theses recent rulings have under cut SANE nurses credibility and expertise in rape examination, health care and human sexuality.
SANE nurses often provide crucial testimony in rape trials, using research that shows women’s bodies respond differently during consensual sex than during rape and certain injuries a victim. Nearly 500 SANE nurses programs exist across the country.
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. . . .
10/30/2014 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. . . .
10/30/2014 UPS Switches Pregnant Worker Policy Ahead of Supreme Court Case - The United Parcel Service (UPS) is changing its policy on light duty assignments for pregnant workers, even though the company will stand by its refusal to extend accommodations to a former employee in an upcoming Supreme Court case.
UPS announced on Monday in a memo to employees, and in a brief filed with the US Supreme Court, that the company will begin offering temporary, light-duty positions to pregnant workers on January 1, 2015. . . .