Louisiana's State House Committee on the Administration of Criminal Justice approved a near-total ban on abortion last Wednesday and the bill, already approved by the Senate, is moving to the House floor for debate. The House Committee approved the ban after attaching an amendment to permit abortion only in order to save the woman’s life or in situations in which the woman’s life would be “permanently impair[ed],” reports the New Orleans Times-Picayune. There are no exceptions for cases of incest or rape.
Speaking to the Times-Picayune, spokesperson Julie Mickelberry of Planned Parenthood of Louisiana and the Mississippi Delta said the bill “puts politics above the health and safety of women…You are not taking a woman’s health into consideration.” According to the Associated Press, Representative Monica Walker (D) had suggested an amendment that would reverse the ban in cases of incest or rape to the Committee. The bill was approved without these exceptions and Walker is considering offering an amendment during the debate by the full House, reports the Times-Picayune.
Should the House vote in favor of the ban, the bill will return to the Senate to approve the amendment. Debate in the Senate last month demonstrated the strong anti-choice politics of the legislators, as there were no arguments against the ban, but only questions of whether to include exceptions for cases of rape and incest. An amendment to include rape and incest exceptions was defeated. The ban is a trigger law, meaning it will only go into effect if Roe v. Wade is overturned.
7/27/2015 Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell Blocked Efforts to Defund Planned Parenthood - An attempt in the Senate to defundÂ Planned Parenthood by Mike Lee (R-UT) was blocked this weekend by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY).Â Lee tried to attach the elimination of federal funds for Planned Parenthood to a vote for highway legislation, a move which was rejected by McConnell asÂ out of order.
Republican legislators have redoubled their efforts to block funding for Planned Parenthood since the release of twoÂ heavily edited clandestine videos of different PPFA employees taken without their knowledge. . . .
7/24/2015 Katherine Spillar Urges Cleveland to Dramatically Increase Hiring of Women Police to Mitigate Police Violence - In a well-received speech at the City Club of Cleveland today, Katherine Spillar, Executive Director of the Feminist Majority Foundation urged Cleveland city officials to dramatically increase the hiring of women police officers as a way to decrease police brutality incidents.
Following a number of high profile police killings in Cleveland of African Americans, and an eight-month investigation by the US Attorney's office of the Northern District of Ohio, the City of Cleveland has now entered into a Consent Decree that requires numerous reforms in how the city oversees and investigates police operations, including training in use of force.
"Among the most important reforms mandated by the consent decree - and the most easily overlooked - are the changes the Cleveland Division of Police must make in its recruitment and hiring practices,
said Spillar. . . .