FMLAs Across the Country Organize to End Sexual Assault and Violence Against Women
Last April, Leadership Alliances and activists across the nation commemorated Sexual Assault Awareness Month with major events, rallies,and marches. The BROWN UNIVERSITY Feminist Majority Leadership Alliance in
Rhode Island organized a Take Back the Night March to rally support for women’s safety on campus. The BOSTON UNIVERSITY Leadership Alliance affiliate hosted a “Clothesline Project” display to raise awareness about
the prevalence of violence against women.
The UNIVERSITY OF NORTH TEXAS participated in their annual Take Back the Night, marching and chanting through the streets of Denton, Texas. The CONNECTICUT COLLEGE Leadership Alliance hosted a Take Back the Night
rally, a candlelight vigil, a “Clothesline Project” display, and a self-defense workshop to empower students on campus.
In spite of heavy rain and unpleasant weather, the TEXAS TECH Feminist Majority Leadership Alliance organized their 2nd Annual Take Back the Night March, featuring speakers from the Lubbock Rape Crisis Center,
personal testimony from a rape survivor, and a candle light vigil. The group sold t-shirts to benefit their local rape crisis center.
The UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS AT EL PASO Leadership Alliance has been involved in raising awareness about the nearly 270 women brutally murdered in their neighboring border city of Juarez, Mexico. Earlier this month, the group
hosted a film screening of “Senorita Extraviada," a documentary that won a Special Jury Prize at the 2002 Sundance Film Festival for its in-depth
depiction of the violence against women in Juarez. In addition, the group hosted a silent auction to raise funds for Casa Amiga, a sexual assault and domestic violence center in Juarez, and brought to campus Colectiva
Antigon, an organization of students, artists, and activists that raise awareness through poetry and performance.
**AUBURN UNIVERSITY AT MONTGOMERY HOSTS FORUM ON TOLERANCE**
The AUBURN UNIVERSITY AT MONTGOMERY (AUM) Feminist Majority Leadership Alliance brought over 170 students together for their Tolerance Forum to discuss issues including violence against women, sexual orientation, hate
crimes, and religious and cultural diversity. Co-sponsored by the AUM Leadership Alliance, the College Democrats, and the Campus Paper, the panel featured members of the FMLA, Montgomery Gay and Lesbian Alliance,
and the Campus Police. The Montgomery County Chief of Police and a speaker from the Southern Poverty Law Center also spoke during the event on current legislation and local incidents of discrimination and hate crimes.
Members of the nearby AUBURN UNIVERSITY AT HUNTINGDON Leadership Alliance attended the event in show of support.
AUM Leadership Alliance leader Melissa Jones notes the need for discussion on issues of tolerance and discrimination, “there’s been a lot of racial
tension, and the gay and lesbian group was having a hard time starting up.
It was good to have people to talk about it in a forum that was comfortable… and [with panelists] that were educated in those areas. It really turned out well and [the group is] really excited.” The event proved a successful forum for discussion, received campus press, and
generated dozens of sign-ups for the group.
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. . . .