I wouldn’t exactly call myself a morning person – but I was awake and ready to go, yesterday at 6:30 in the morning with a bus full of activists and a handful of coffee and snacks. We were on our way to Washington DC to lobby against the harmful and dangerous language in the Stupak Amendment to the House Health Care Bill. The bus was packed and the energy was good. On the bus – we did a quick Lobbying 101. We talked about our messaging; no one should be left behind in health care reform, not women, not immigrants, not Latinas, and not anyone else. We got to the capital ready to tell our senators and representatives that Stupak outrageously extends Hyde and it will hurt women, families and communities. (more…)
Archive for the ‘Politics’ Category
So you’ve heard the words all over the news. Public option. Stupak. Conference. Blue Dogs. Filibuster. Premiums. Private market. Unless you geek out on hours of CSPAN and NPR, talking health care reform can be like speaking in code.
Want to get a breakdown of what it all really means? Are you wondering how everything going down in DC will affect you?
Hop on a call TODAY, November 24th, at 1PM EST with young people from across the country, hosted by Choice USA and the Generational Alliance. Hear NLIRH Deputy Director Jessica Gonzalez-Rojas, along with the National Coalition for LGBT Health, Choice USA and the NAACP talk about health care reform. Learn what the Bills say, what the voting process looks like, where reform is, and what’s at stake in it for you, your family and your community. The call is for anyone and everyone who wants to up their health care IQ. RSVP here before the call fills up! Once you’re on the list, you’ll receive the phone number to call into.
In the past month, two Mexican states have passed laws to further criminalize abortion. Queretero and Oaxaca became the 15th and 16th Mexican states out of 31 to define life as beginning at fertilization. These laws result in the criminalization of abortions for all women with the exception of rape victims but not victims of incest.
What these legislators are forgetting is that the prohibition of abortion will only cause many of these women to seek to terminate their unwanted pregnancies under dangerous and risky circumstances. According to the Secretary of Public Health, in six of the 16 states that have criminalized abortion, maternal mortality is five times the national average.
According to John Ross in his article War on Mexican Women:
The anti-abortion push is being orchestrated by the ruling right-wing PAN party in connivance with the Princes of Catholic Hierarchy…their goal is to repeal Mexico City’s free abortion-on-demand law…which has provided 30,000 women the right to choice over the past two years, according to the Mexico City Women’s Initiative.
In addition, the Secretary of Education (run by the PAN party), confiscated first year high school biology text books in the city of Guanajuato, on the charge that they included education on birth control methods. According to John Ross,
The Guanajuato Education Secretariast (SEG) distributed 114,00 of their own biology textbooks that demonized masturbation and homosexuality, skipped any mention of AIDS prevention and advocated abstinence as the only method of avoiding unwanted pregnancies.
Last month the Mexican Senate also voted in Arturo Chavez Chavez as their new attorney general. Chavez Chavez’s previous work was as chief prosecutor in the state of Chihuahua, home to Cuidad Juarez, the location of hundreds of brutal murders of young women throughout the 90s and until today. His conduct in regard to those murders has been seriously questioned, including assertions that he actually tried to place blame on the victims themselves.
With the same abortion criminalization bills pending in Michoacan, Sinaloa, Veracruz, and Mexico State, and the current tide of anti-choice and anti-women policies, it’s a difficult road ahead for women in Mexico.
We’ve seen time and time again internationally that laws which criminalize abortion don’t serve to lower overall rates of abortion, they just increase rates of maternal mortality. We’ve got to work against these policies that put the health and livelihood of women at risk.
By Krystal Chan, Communications and Development Intern
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 26, 2009
Samantha E. Harper: 212.422.2553 | Samantha@latinainstitute.org
National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health Mourns the Loss of Senator Kennedy
Calls on Congress to honor Sen. Kennedy’s lifelong mission to reform health care.
Washington D.C. — National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health (NLIRH) joins our nation and the world in mourning the loss of Senator Edward Moore Kennedy. Our condolences go out to his family and friends during this difficult time.
Throughout his life, Sen. Kennedy was a friend and advocate to those in need. He championed access to affordable, quality health care; supported women, their families, and their communities; and fought for civil rights and immigration reform.
As we pay tribute to Women’s Equality Day, we are guided by the words of Sen. Kennedy, “the work goes on, the cause endures, the hope still lives and the dream shall never die.”
Senator Kennedy’s leadership, vision, and passion will never be forgotten.
NLIRH calls on Congress to honor Sen. Kennedy’s lifelong mission to reform health care for all Americans.
Established in 1994, the NLIRH is the only national Latina health and reproductive justice organization representing the growing Latina population. NLIRH works to ensure the fundamental human right to reproductive health for Latinas, their families and their communities, focusing on three critical areas: increasing access to abortion, eliminating reproductive health disparities, and advancing the rights of immigrant women. For more information on NLIRH, visit www.latinainstitute.org.
From Silvia Henriquez, Executive Director:
The Senate confirmation of Judge Sonia Sotomayor heralds a new era of diversity in our courts. Judge Sotomayor offers inspiration for Latinas as her confirmation has challenged stereotypes and demonstrated the growing political power of the Latino community.
Judge Sotomayor will play a pivotal role in promoting the dignity and well being of our families and our communities. Her confirmation signals hope for not only expanded legal access to abortion but also for expanded social access to the full range of reproductive health care, such as health care funding for poor women. Judge Sotomayor’s body of work and judicial philosophy reveals a sophisticated analysis of social issues and the important role of the court in safeguarding human dignities.
On the week that Judge Sotomayor begins her new role as Supreme Court Justice, NLIRH will host a national ‘Quinceañera’ gala to celebrate the coming-of-age of a new era of Latina empowerment. NLIRH was founded fifteen years after the first Latina was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives, and fifteen years later we are ready to toast the first Latina to sit on the nation’s highest court. On October 7, 2009, NLIRH advocates and supporters will come together in Washington, D.C. to draw on the experiences of our roots, to raise our voices for reproductive justice, and to celebrate our power to create social change for Latinas in the years ahead.
For more information, please visit www.latinainstitute.org.
To schedule an interview with Silvia Henriquez, please contact Andrea Hagelgans at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 646-575-2956.
NLIRH Executive Director Silvia Henriquez discusses Sotomayor, Roe v. Wade and Latinos’ diverse views on abortion in an op-ed featured in New American Media.
The wide diversity of Latino attitudes on abortion tells us that Judge Sotomayor’s ethnicity does not determine her position on Roe v. Wade. What we do know is that even though Judge Sotomayor’s experience and record have not directly dealt with protecting a woman’s right to choose, she has demonstrated an unwavering commitment to justice, fidelity to legal precedent and utmost respect for the law throughout her career. In her Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearings, she made clear that her future decisions would be bound by legal precedent and clearly articulated her respect for the law established in Roe v. Wade. Judge Sotomayor’s statements were extremely promising indicators of her commitment to women’s reproductive rights.
Read the full piece at New American Media.
By Maria Elena Perez, Director of Community Mobilization
Despite an impressive record, and support from Republicans and Democrats, Judge Sotomayor is still facing opposition. Senator John McCain said yesterday he won’t vote for Judge Sotomayor.
She needs your support. Click here to send an email to your Senator’s telling them why they should support her.
Yesterday, the Senate Judiciary Committee approved the nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor for Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court by a vote of 13 – 6.
Silvia Henriquez, executive director for the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health, the nation’s leading voice on Latina reproductive health and justice, provided the following comments in support of the confirmation vote.
NLIRH commends Judiciary Committee members and calls on the Senate to show full and immediate support of Sotomayor’s historic nomination. Throughout the extensive questioning, Judge Sotomayor has shown the courage and conviction necessary to make critical decisions on behalf of all Americans. Supreme Court decisions have a tremendous impact on our daily lives, making it all the more necessary to have an extremely qualified Latina serve on the U.S. Supreme Court who understands and respects the diverse experiences of all people in this country. We urge the full Senate to focus on her exceptional judicial career that spans 17 years in the federal court, in addition to her academic experience and her role as a New York City prosecutor—and confirm Judge Sotomayor to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Silvia Henriquez, Executive Director, and Jessica Gonzalez-Rojas, Deputy Director, are available for comment. To arrange an interview, please contact Andrea Hagelgans of Camino PR at 212.255.2575 or 646.575.2956.
The Senate Judiciary Committee voted to endorse Judge Sonia Sotomayor’s nomination today, in a vote of 13-6. Only one Republican member voted in support of her nomination, Senator Lindsey Graham from South Carolina.
The full Senate will have to vote on her nomination, but her confirmation looks likely.
Nation’s leading voice for Latina reproductive health and justice concludes Judge supports right to privacy and fidelity to the law
In anticipation of the Judiciary Committee vote, the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health (NLIRH) called on the Senate to confirm federal appellate Judge Sonia Sotomayor to the U.S. Supreme Court. Throughout the hearings, Judge Sotomayor expressed unwavering respect for the right to privacy and settled law, including the pivotal decision Roe v. Wade to legalize abortion. NLIRH, the nation’s leading voice for Latina reproductive health and justice, issued the following statement in support of Judge Sotomayor:
NLIRH stands in solidarity with Judge Sotomayor as she moves one step closer to becoming the first Hispanic judge on the Supreme Court,” said Silvia Henriquez, NLIRH Executive Director. “Judge Sotomayor has shown time and again that she respects prior Supreme Court decisions and will continue to uphold a woman’s right to choose. After listening to Judge Sotomayor’s responses to extensive questioning, we are confident that she recognizes the pivotal role she will play in promoting the dignity and well-being of our families and our community.
At 46 million, Latinos are the nation’s largest and fastest growing minority group. Nine million Latinos voted in the 2008 elections. Unfortunately, Latinos still report high rates of discrimination.
From equal protection under the law to education and health care access, Supreme Court decisions have a daily impact on all Americans. These decisions shape the lives of today’s generation as well as generations to come, making it all the more necessary for the Supreme Court to understand and appreciate the diversity of experiences in this country. We hope that the Senate will show its full and immediate support for Judge Sotomayor, added Henriquez.
Silvia Henriquez, Executive Director, and Jenny Jourdain, Associate Director of Policy, are available for comment. To arrange an interview, please contact Andrea Hagelgans of Camino PR at 212.255.2575 and 646.575.2956.