Tag Archives: Women’s Issues

US Senate Hearing Highlights Impacts of ‘Horrific Anti-Abortion Crusade’

Sen. Patty Murray described the event as “a close accounting of the trauma Republicans are inflicting on women and families across our country, and the damage they are doing to basic reproductive healthcare.”

By Jessica Corbett. Published 6-4-2024 by Common Dreams

Image: Senator Patty Murray/X

Abortion rights advocates in the U.S. Senate held a Tuesday hearing highlighting the impacts of healthcare bans imposed by the GOP, particularly since the Supreme Court’s June 2022 ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which reversed Roe v. Wade.

The hearing—titled, “The Assault on Women’s Freedoms: How Abortion Bans Have Created a Healthcare Nightmare Across America”—was officially hosted by Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee Chair Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), but he kicked it off by explaining why he was turning things over to Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.), the panel’s former leader.

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Southeast Abortion Clinic Wait Times Soared After Florida Ban

Before the ban, the average Florida resident lived 20 miles from a clinic and would need to wait five days to access an abortion; after the ban, the driving distance jumped to 590 miles and the wait time to almost 14 days.

By Olivia Rosane. Published 5-24-2024 by Common Dreams

Abortion rights supporters rallied in Lake Eola Park, Florida, on April 13, 2024. (Photo: ACLU of Florida/X)

Wait times have increased at 30% of the abortion clinics in the states closest to Florida its draconian six-week abortion ban went into effect on May 1.

The data comes from a survey carried out by Middlebury University economics professor Caitlin Myers and her undergraduate students, which was reported by The Washington Post on Friday.

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‘We Must Fight Against Fascists’: Protests Greet Far-Right Summit in Spain

“We are not going to allow them to take even one step back,” one protester said as far-right political leaders set their sights on the European Union elections.

By Jessica Corbett. Published 5-20-2024 by Common Dreams

Dozens of people protest during a rally against the “Viva 24” event in Madrid, Spain on May 19, 2024. Photo: EFE Noticias/X

As European Union voters prepare for June elections, far-right leaders gathered in Madrid for a weekend rally hosted by Spain’s Vox party—a gathering at the Palacio de Vistalegre that drew protests and warnings about their plans for the continent.

Rally speakers delivered “strong messages against illegal migration and the bloc’s climate policy while declaring their support for Israel in its war against Hamas,” according to The Associated Press.

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Study Links Abortion Restrictions and Intimate Partner Homicide

“In thinking about pregnancy itself as a risk factor for homicide, it follows that the ability to prevent or end a pregnancy” could have “immediate implications” for the safety of pregnant people, said one researcher.

By Julia Conley. Published 5-8-2024 by Common Dreams

On the day of the 50th anniversary of when Roe v. Wade was argued at the Supreme Court, abortion rights supporters held a candlelight vigil in front of the Court. Photo: Victoria Pickering/flickr/CC

A new study links abortion restrictions to an increased risk that pregnant people will be murdered by their intimate partners—and since researchers examined laws that were in place before the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade and cleared the way for statewide abortion bans, the authors warn that the threat may be even greater than the analysis shows.

In the study released Monday, researchers at Tulane University looked at five separate abortion restrictions and compared them to the intimate partner homicide rates reported by the National Violent Death Reporting System at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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‘Ed Scare’ Deepens​ as 4,000+ Books Banned in First Half of School Year

“The bans we’re seeing are broad, harsh, and pernicious—and they’re undermining the education of millions of students across the country,” said one lead author of a new PEN America report.

By Brett Wilkins Published 4-16-2024 by Common Dreams

Photo: nataliesap/flickr/CC

U.S. school districts banned more books during the first half of the current academic year than during the entire last scholastic year, a report published Tuesday revealed.

PEN America recorded 4,349 book bans across 52 school districts in 23 states during the fall 2023 semester, more than double the 1,841 titles that were prohibited during the spring term and more than the 3,362 volumes reported banned nationwide during the entire previous academic year.

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Arizona Supreme Court Upholds 1864 Abortion Ban—But Voters Will Get ‘Ultimate Say’ in November

“Arizona is what happens when abortion policy is, as Donald Trump claims he wishes, left up to the states,” said one columnist.

By Julia Conley. Published 4-9-2024 by Common Dreams.

Pro-choice rally at the Supreme Court, 2019. Photo: jordanuhl7/Wikimedia Commons/CC

Reproductive justice campaigners in Arizona on Tuesday vowed to make sure voters “have the ultimate say” on abortion rights after the state Supreme Court upheld an 1864 ban that includes no exceptions for pregnancies resulting from rape or incest.

“This is a horrifying ruling that puts the lives and futures of countless Arizonans at risk,” said Leah Greenberg, co-founder of progressive advocacy group Indivisible. “It’s devastating and cruel—and we’re fighting back.”

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Rwandan genocide, 30 years on: Omitting women’s memories encourages incomplete understanding of violence

A father is searching for his missing child using ICRC assistance during the 1994 Rwandan Genocide. Photo: British Red Cross/flickr/CC

By Anneliese M. Schenk-Day, Ohio State University. Published 4-5-2024 by The Conversation

The eruption of violence that Rwanda experienced beginning on the evening of April 6, 1994, continues to haunt the central African nation 30 years on – it has also changed the country’s gender dynamics.

The genocide resulted in hundreds of thousands of men being killed, with many more fleeing the country or being incarcerated. It left a previously male-centered society with hundreds of thousands of female-headed households. Of course, women were also subjected to the violence itself, with many killed and between 250,000 and 500,000 raped in the three months of genocide.

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Conservative Texas District Court Won’t Implement Anti-Judge Shopping Policy

The chief judge of the Northern District of Texas indicated the court will not follow new guidance, while a lower court judge called out a pro-business group’s use of “judge shopping.”

By Julia Conley. Published 3-31-2024 by Common Dreams

Shopping for judges by right-wing crusaders undermines public trust.. Screenshot: CNN

Right-wing groups will still be able to pick and choose the judges who hear their cases in one of the most conservative federal court districts in the United States, following a decision by the Northern District of Texas on Friday that goes against new anti-“judge shopping” guidance.

Chief U.S. District Judge David Godbey of the Northern District wrote in a letter to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer that the court would not abide by new guidance from the Judicial Conference, which said earlier this month that the court system should randomly assign lawsuits to any judge throughout the district where they’re filed.

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Legislative inaction and dissatisfaction with one-party control lead to more issues going directly to voters in ballot initiatives, with 60% of them in six states

By Thom Reilly, Arizona State University. Published 3-21-2024 by The Conversation

Photo: Stewart Butterfield/flickr/CC

Recent polls show Americans are increasingly dissatisfied with their system of representative democracy, in which they choose candidates to represent their interests once in office.

When available, voters have bypassed their elected representatives and enacted laws by using direct democracy tools such as ballot initiatives and veto referendums. Ballot initiatives allow citizens or legislatures to propose policies for voter approval, while veto referendums permit challenges to legislative action.

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GOP Leaders Push Judiciary to Ignore Policy Designed to End ‘Judge Shopping’

“Look who just came out and said it: We’re against the fair and impartial administration of justice,” said one civil rights attorney.

BY Julia Conley. Published 3-15-2024 by Common Dreams

Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky speaking at CPAC in 2014. Photo: Gage Skidmore/flickr/CC

Republican lawmakers on Thursday signaled they want to stop judges from following a new judicial policy unveiled this week that’s aimed at curbing what one journalist called “one of the most outrageous aspects of the American legal system.”

In a letter to the chief justices of U.S. district courts across the country on a new rule regarding the practice of “judge shopping,” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) joined Sens. John Cornyn (R-Texas) and Thom Tillis (R-N.C.) in advising the judges that “Judicial Conference policy is not legislation.”

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