It’s (All People Who Identify as a) Women’s History Month.
And the celebration feels patronizing.
Women and people identifying as women hold up half the sky. Our contributions to community, society, science, art and every other aspect of humanity should be celebrated. Loudly.
Yet we’re bombarded with uplifting little fun facts about prominent women in history–“Nice job, gals!”–while we continue to scream into the headwinds of oppression that carry our voices away. It’s infuriating.
Happy (fill in the blank) History Month. They all feel similar in that regard.
Is this gloomy? We don’t mean to be gloomy. It’s just that it’s exhausting to carry on the fights of the generations before us. Shouldn’t we have figured this out by now?
But we’re grateful that activists today have one thing those before didn’t: connection like never before. Just like our grandmothers, we can connect with others in our community, but unlike them, we get to reach across whole oceans to find like-minded folx we can support and who support us. And when we feel oppressed, it’s pretty validating to see organizations across the globe ask the UN to condemn the US for human rights violations. It doesn’t simply feel that bad. It is that bad.
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On Monday, there was a hearing at the State House for the EACA, and we were there in full force. Our team is FIRED UP from the incredible hearing on the bill. We don’t want to sound like an Oscar speech, but there are sooooo many people to thank and if we miss anyone please know that if you sent an email, made a call, submitted testimony or showed up, we are beyond grateful. It will take all of us to get this done and get bans on abortion off our bodies!
- We have to give a HUGE shout out to the many electeds who spoke out for the hearing, including Governor McKee, Lieutenant Governor Matos, General Treasurer James A. Diossa and Secretary of State Gregg Amore who testified in person.
- The lead House sponsor and House Majority Whip, Katie Kazarian gave a powerful opening.
- There were countless amazing organizational partners there in force from SISTA Fire’s Ditra Edwards, EPI’s Weayonnoh Nelson-Davies, the President and COO of Women & Infants Hospital, Shannon Sullivan, and BLM RI PAC’s Harrison Tuttle as well as community leader AFL-CIO’s Pat Crowley. There were other incredible people taking a stand with us – so many that we couldn’t name them all, but we send so much gratitude to each and every one!
- We appreciate the MANY members of the Campaign for Equal Abortion Coverage who showed up and spoke up, but most of all our hearts and love go out to every Rhode Island activist who shared their personal story and took time out of their lives to be there with us to testify and show their support!
Check out our social feeds for press clips, testimony quotes, and other exciting updates from the hearing, as well as info about what’s next. The momentum coming out of last night didn’t happen by accident. It took a lot of hard work to get here – and we know there is a lot of work ahead, but for now we are so proud and inspired by what we accomplished together last night.
Below you’ll find some other opportunities to be in community with us and make your voices heard. Together, we will and we ARE making a positive difference. Thank you for being in this with us! Onward to get this bill across the finish line! We will #PassTheEACA!
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It’s interesting to see how many bills up for consideration this legislative session are peripherally linked to reproductive justice. Tenant rights efforts have been prominent in the local news, and there are several related bills up for consideration. Also heartening are how many conversations about topics like paid family leave, childcare and student loan forgiveness are happening.
Oppression comes in many forms, and all of these conversations are about nothing more than allowing us the dignity of having enough–enough resources to support ourselves and our families and the freedom to make decisions that make the most sense for us.
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While we wait for a decision on mifepristone to come down from Texas, Walgreens has entered the chat.
On January 3, the FDA made a rule change that said people could receive their abortion medication prescriptions by mail instead of having to pick them up in person. But following receipt of a letter from 20 Republican attorneys general that warned of legal consequences to selling mifepristone by mail, Walgreens announced that it would stop dispensing the drug in 20 states, some of which still have legal abortion, until it can become a certified distributor in states where mifepristone remains legal. Certified pharmacies are required to track shipments and keep records of prescribers and recipients in order to prevent pills from being redistributed.
- So come do a personal protest with us today as we quickly project on the Providence Atwell’s Walgreens. Reach out to us and ask for a time. Take the picture and share it as a personal protest on this International (All People Who Identify as a) Womxn Day.
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SAVE THE DATES & Special Events
Tuesdays with TWP | 3 – 4:30pm
Every Tuesday, our executive director, Jocelyn Foye, will be at the State House with a group of volunteers and EACA campaign members to lobby on behalf of the Equality in Abortion Coverage Act. We’re a warm, welcoming group with ages that span the decades, and we want you to join us and add to our numbers.
International (anyone identifying as a) Women’s Day | Wednesday, March 8th, 4 – 5:30pm
Join us in Kennedy Plaza where we’ll host a living statue of the Independent Woman. Learn the history of the statue and celebrate women’s persistence in the face of questionable decisions made behind closed doors.
Our Bodies, Our Stories: Abortion storytelling in partnership with SHIP | Thursday, March 30
Join us virtually for this storytelling event. The purpose is to foster community and raise awareness. In addition to community members’ stories, SHIP will lead a few rounds of Sex Trivia.