Tuesday, January 31, 2012

HERvotes Blog Carnival: No Religious Exemption for Birth Control Coverage

by Kim Gandy, Feminist Majority Foundation

Despite enormous pressure from the National Conference of Catholic Bishops, the Obama Administration recently decided not to broaden the religious exemption for contraceptive coverage under the Preventive Care package of the Affordable Care Act. This demand for additional exemptions, would have denied millions of American women contraceptive coverage, including students, teachers, nurses, social workers, and other staff (and their families) at religiously-connected or affiliated schools, universities, and hospitals, as well as agencies and institutions like Catholic Charities.

The Catholic Bishops are now leading a backlash against this decision, and women are speaking out. Because of the Affordable Care Act, millions of women who may have been denied access to birth control will now have full access under their health insurance plan, with no co-pays or deductibles, beginning in August 2012. Birth control is the number one prescription drug for women ages 18 to 44 years. Right now, the average woman has to pay up to $50 per month for 30 years for birth control. As a result, many women have had to forgo regular use of birth control and half of US pregnancies are unplanned.

Women of all faiths are employed by hospitals and schools that are owned by religious interests, and they should not be denied equal health care coverage. We urge the Obama Administration to continue to stand strong for women’s health care.

Join us by sharing the posts below on Facebook, Twitter (using the hashtag #HERvotes), and other social media.

Part of the #HERvotes blog carnival.

Take Action:

Join the Feminist Majority Foundation in chastising the Washington Post for repeatedly running editorials attacking the Obama administration’s decision.
Join The National Women's Law Center and Raising Women's Voices in thanking Kathleen Sebelius for making the right decision.
Join UltraViolet in thanking President Obama and Secretary Sebelius.
Thank the Obama administration directly on WhiteHouse.gov.
Join the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health in telling President Obama you support birth control without co-pays.
Join The National Women's Law Center in telling your senator to reject extreme legislation.
Join The Coalition of Labor Union Women in telling the Senate that you oppose S.2043.

Read More

Sex, Contraception, Motherhood & The Current Madness - Kristin Rowe-Finkbeiner, Mom's Rising

The Long History of the War Against Contraception- Ellen Chesler, New Deal 2.0

Five Big Facts on Birth Control Not Nearly Enough Discussed by Men in the Mainstream Media- Erin Matson, NOW

Congressional Members’ Statements on Contraceptive Coverage Rule Not Based in Fact- Mara Gandal-Powers, National Women's Law Center
Mission Accomplished With Komen: Now It's Time to Save Birth Control Coverage!- Sammie Moshenberg, National Council of Jewish Women
Protect Women's Health: Tell Your Senators to Reject Extreme Legislation- Judy Waxman, National Women's Law Center
I Don’t Use Birth Control, But I Want Access To It- Abigail Collazo, Fem 2.0
This Week’s Attack on Women: Deny Contraceptives! Take Action!!- Carolyn Jacobson and Carol S. Rosenblatt, Coalition of Labor Union Women
Would You Like an Unplanned Pregnancy with that Burrito?- Jen Wang, NARAL's Blog for Choice
HERvotes: Boehner Ups the Threat Against Contraception Coverage- Ms. Blog
Do Republicans Have Sex?- Silver Ribbon Campaign
Major Mainstream Religious Leaders Support White House on Contraceptive Coverage In Health Care Reform- Religious Institute
The Fight Millennials Never Expected: Birth Control- Sarah, Advocates for Youth
An Unholy Alliance Between the Bishops and the Right-Wing Attack Machine- Amy Allina, Raising Women’s Voices for the Health Care We Need, National Women’s Health Network
An Equal & Just World: A Woman’s Right to Control Her Own Reproductive Health- Hannah Sherman, Jewish Women International
Margaret and Helen on the Issues- Margaret and Helen
Religious Freedom in the Crosshairs of Catholic Bishops- Catholics for Choice
Co-Pay for Birth Control? Not Under my Conscience Clause- Bettina Hager, National Women's Political Caucus
Select Media Coverage: Catholics Supporting Contraceptive Coverage Under the ACA- Complied by Catholics for Choice
Seven Things You (and the Media) Need to Know about Birth Control -Jacqueline M., Planned Parenthood Action Fund's Women Are Watching Blog
Obama's contraception exemption puts my patients at risk -Dr. Jennifer H. Tang, Physicians for Reproductive Choice and Health; Letter to the Editor, The Charlotte Observer
Contraception mandate doesn't force use -Bernice Durbin, Letter to the Editor, USA Today
Why All Employers Should Provide Insurance Coverage for Birth Control -Physicians for Reproductive Choice and Health
Delays and Barriers to Accessing BC at Georgetown -Sandra Fluke, Georgetown University Law Students for Reproductive Justice
How to Host a Birth Control Clinic in 3 Easy Steps -Emily T. Wolf, Fordham Law Students for Reproductive Justice
Obama Administration Ensures a Wide Range of Contraceptive Insurance Coverage, Even at Religiously-Affiliated Institutions -Women's Law Project
Birth Control and Government: The Right of Refusal Should Belong to Women -Nancy K. Kaufman, National Council of Jewish Women
Through the Looking Glass on Contraception Coverage -Debra Ness, National Partnership for Women & Families
For the Sisters -Megan Lieff, Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice
Thank you, Obama, For Standing with ALL Women on Important Health Care Issues -Lacy Langbecker, the Wisconsin Alliance for Women's Health
Birth Control Matters -Nita Chaudhary and Shaunna Thomas, UltraViolet
Would you let someone make your contraceptive decisions for you? Didn’t think so -Mara Gandal-Powers, National Women’s Law Center
The Highs and Lows on Birth Control Access Coverage -Stephanie Drahan, National Women’s Law Center
Hey Media: It’s about the Health of Women and Families -Leila Abolfazli, National Women’s Law Center
Women of Childbearing Age: Take Your Talents Elsewhere -Jill C. Morrison, National Women’s Law Center
My Health Is Not a Pork Chop -Dania Palanker, National Women’s Law Center
Single 18 year-old female. Desperately seeking affordable and accessible contraception. – Keely Monroe, National Women’s Health Network
NASW Supports HHS Decision on Women’s Rights -National Association of Social Workers
Fight Against the Catholic Attack on Preventative Healthcare for Women -Mallen Urso, National Women’s Political Caucus
The Impact of a Religious Exemption for Birth Control to University Students – Emily T. Wolf, Fordham Law Students for Reproductive Justice
We’re Not Giving Up! – Amy Allina, Raising Women’s Voices for the Health Care We Need, National Women’s Health Network
Maryland Women Have a Right to Birth Control- Leni Preston, Maryland Women’s Coalition for Health Care
Critics Get It Wrong on Contraceptive Coverage- Marcia D. Greenberger, National Women’s Law Center
One More Time…- Jill Morrison, National Women’s Law Center
Breaking News: Access to No-Cost Birth Control Secured- Judy Waxman, National Women’s Law Center
What Difference does a Co-Pay Make? Plenty!- Cindy Pearson, Raising Women’s Voices
The Greatest Advance for Women in a Generation- Jean Silver-Isenstadt, MD, PhD, National Physicians Alliance
#Fail on Birth Control from The Washington Post- Thomas Dollar, NARAL Pro-Choice America
Response to Washington Post Criticism of Contraceptive Coverage- Nancy Keenan, NARAL Pro-Choice America

HERvotes Blog Carnival: Reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act

by Emily Alfano, National Council of Jewish Women

For the eighth #HERvotes blog carnival, our coalition of women's groups is joining forces for the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s 2010 National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey found alarming rates of sexual violence, stalking, and domestic violence. One in 4 U.S. women has been the victim of severe physical violence by an intimate partner, and nearly 1 in 5 has been raped in her lifetime.

This week, the Senate Judiciary Committee will consider legislation that would reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), the largest policy effort aimed at responding to and preventing these crimes. First passed in 1994, VAWA supports comprehensive, cost-saving responses to domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault and stalking. Since its passage in 1994, more victims report domestic violence to the police and the rate of non-fatal intimate partner violence against women has decreased by 53 percent.

HERvotes supports VAWA’s lifesaving programs and services and urges Congress to reauthorize and improve VAWA’s critical programs for five more years.

Let’s spread the word and make sure Congress hears our voices.

Join us by sharing the posts below on Facebook, Twitter (using the hashtag #HERvotes), and other social media.

Part of the #HERvotes blog carnival.

Take Action:
National Organization for Women petition to Congress

Read more:

A Critical Tool to Save Lives: VAWA -Wm. T. (Bill) Robinson III, American Bar Association
Violence Is a Cycle: We Must Reauthorize VAWA -John Roach, Break the Cycle
Calling for the Reauthorization of VAWA- Brandi Callaghan, Feminist Majority Foundation
Immigration, Intimate Partner Violence, and the Violence Against Women Act -Anjela Jenkins, Law Students for Reproductive Justice Fellow, blogging for the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health
Teen Dating Violence -Christine Bork, YWCA Metropolitan Chicago
Hey Congress, How About Giving Half the Population Some Love? -Janet Hill, Coalition of Labor Union Women
“It’s a Good Time To Be a Black Woman? Well, Not So Good When It Comes To Violence”- Angela Sutton, Black Women’s Health Imperative
Combating Domestic Violence: A Call to Reauthorize VAWA- Mallen Urso, National Women’s Political Caucus
Taking the Violence Against Women Act to Higher Ground- Emily Alfano, NCJW
Tell Your Senator to Reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act Now- Elizabeth Owens, AAUW
Why VAWA is a Queer Issue- Terra Slavin, L.A. Gay and Lesbian Center and Sharon Stapel, New York City Anti-Violence Project
Universities Should Support VAWA- Melissa Siegel, loveisrespect.org National Youth Advisory Board
Students Against Dating/Domestic Abuse- Sara Skavroneck, loveisrespect.org National Youth Advisory Board

Loveisrespect.org- National Youth Advisory Board Against Dating Violence- Kevin Mauro, loveisrespect.org National Youth Advisory Board
Teenage Dating Violence and VAWA- Nikki Desario, loveisrespect.org National Youth Advisory Board
Joining Forces – Women Veterans Speak Out: The Trenches, Remembered- Joan Grey, Business and Professional Women’s Foundation
Violence Against Women Act up for Reauthorization- National Association of Social Workers

Wake up, People! Domestic Violence is an Epidemic!- Donna Pantry, Elf Lady's Chronicles

Recession and Women: How Economic Insecurity Enables Abuse- Donna Addkison’s, Wider Opportunities for Women (WOW)

More Bipartisan Support Needed for Violence Against Women Act- Terry O'Neill, Say It Sister- NOW’s Blog for Equality