The Virginia Board of Health will vote today on permanent targeted regulations of abortion providers (TRAP) that will impose restrictions on the state's abortion clinics. The state's proposed regulations have been called the most restrictive policies in the country.
Hundreds of activists gathered at the Board of Health meeting this morning to protest the TRAP law. Emily Creveling, funding manager at Falls Church Healthcare Center and a health educator, told reporters from the Associated Press, "Women have had abortions for thousands of years, and the law isn't going to stop it. It'll just become unsafe."
Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell signed the TRAP law last year and emergency regulations have been in effect since January 1, even though there was no declared public health emergency. The law requires that first-trimester abortion clinics undergo architectural renovations so that hallways are a specific width and ceilings are a specific height. Also under the regulations, state authorities can enter a clinic to inspect at any time without notice to examine patient medical records, gather a list of current patients, and interview patients on site, potentially violating both patient and provider privacy.
Media Resources: AP 6/15/12; Richmond Times-Dispatch 6/15/12; OpposeTrap Press Release 6/13/12; Feminist Daily Newswire 6/4/12
5/1/2015 House Reverses DC Law Banning Reproductive Health Discrimination by Employers - The US House of Representatives voted Thursday night to overturn a Washington, DC, law that makes it illegal for employers to retaliate against employees who use their insurance to cover procedures like in-vitro fertilization or abortion and contraception like birth control pills and IUDs for themselves, their spouses, or their children.
The District's council passed the Reproductive Health Non-Discrimination Amendment Act last year. . . .
4/30/2015 400 Women and Children Have Been Rescued From Boko Haram in Nigeria - In two different operations in under a week, Nigerian troops have rescued more than 400 women and children who had been kidnapped by Boko Haram.
On Tuesday, Nigerian troops announced they rescued 200 girls and 93 women from Boko Haram - and today news has come out that troops rescued another 160 women and children.
While the news is promising and shows progress made in Nigeria to combat Boko Haram, the girls rescued were not the Chibok girls who inspired the #BringBackOurGirls movement last year. . . .
4/29/2015 Hillary Clinton Calls for Criminal Justice Reform and an End to Mass Incarceration - Hillary Clinton delivered the keynote address at the 18th Annual Dinkins Leadership and Public Policy Forum today, addressing directly criminal justice reforms she would like to see to prevent another "incarceration generation."
"It's time the end the era of mass incarceration," Clinton declared to much applause, citing statistics about the disproportionately higher rate of incarceration that black men in America face. . . .