Hundreds March at Statehouse to Protest Anti-Woman Legislation; Tell Governor, State Leaders We Won't Go Back
COLUMBUS - Angered by a string of attacks on women's health care - including legislative efforts to require doctors to give false information to women patients - hundreds of people marched on the state capital Wednesday and vowed to defeat anti-woman legislation and the politicians who support them.
"Gov. (John) Kasich ran and won by promising jobs but Ohio is third from the bottom in creating jobs," said Eleanor Smeal, who heads the Feminist Majority. "Once he got elected, he didn't talk about jobs. He talked about controlling a woman's uterus."
Other speakers echoed her comments and promised to continue fighting for the rights of women to have access to quality care and for doctors - not politicians - to decide what is best for patients.
"Women are not fooled by the hide-and-sneak tactics of John Kasich and his pals who want to push us back to the 1950s," said Terry O'Neill, president of the National Organization for Women. "Make no mistake, the politicians who keep waging this outrageous war on women will pay a price at the polls next year."
Smeal and O'Neill were among 10 speakers who addressed the 90-minute rally and urged attendees to make their opposition to the anti-woman legislation known, stand up for the rights of doctors and patients and consider changing Ohio's political climate by running for office.
Stephanie Kight, President and CEO, Planned Parenthood Advocates of Ohio, said the laws put in place by Ohio politicians "hurt our most vulnerable women - like the gag order on rape crisis counselors. Our politicians have passed laws that are medically unnecessary and that are designed to reduce access to the care women need."
NARAL's Kellie Copeland said, "Gov. Kasich's work to close abortion clinics and family planning centers is a serious threat to women's health. Ohio women and their families deserve better and won't forget these attacks on their health care."
Sara Hutchinson, Domestic Program Director for Catholics for Choice, said Catholics won't sit idly by while women's lives are placed at risk. "There are 2 million Catholics in Ohio and only 15 are bishops," she said.
Doctors and patients also spoke, with doctors complaining that they have been pushed aside while politicians legislate how doctors must practice medicine.
The rally comes as legislators return from their summer recess and prepare to debate legislation that would set Ohio back even father. Ohio already has some of the nation's strictest anti-abortion laws and pending bills would require doctors to tell women there is a link between breast cancer and abortion when none exits and prosecute doctors who refuse to lie to patients.
Buses, vans and cars brought supporters from Cleveland, Youngstown, Warren, Akron, Solon, Geauga and Lake counties, Cincinnati, Athens, Toledo, Dayton, Columbus and elsewhere.
For More Information, Contact:
Brian Rothenberg, 614-207-3237
Sandy Theis, 614-940-0131
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. . . .