Boston College Students Face Discipline for Distributing Condoms
A group of Boston College students are facing possible punishment from the university's administration for passing out condoms. The group, Safe Sites, founded a network of eighteen dorm rooms and additional spaces near the campus that provide condoms to students.
A spokesperson for the college, Jack Dunn, told students in an email that, "As a Jesuit, Catholic University, there are certain Catholic commitments that Boston College is called to uphold. We ask our students to respect these commitments, particularly as they pertain to Catholic social teaching on the sanctity of life. We recognize that, as a reflection of society at large, many students do not agree with the Church's position on these issues. However, we ask those who do not agree to be respectful of our position, and circumspect in their private affairs."
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) is now involved and are willing to counter with legal action if the proposed disciplinary action by the college takes place. The ACLU has called disciplinary threat "entirely inappropriate."
Media Resources: WBUR News & Wire Services 3/27/13; BostInno 3/28/13; The Daily Beast 3/28/13
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. . . .