I usually do not write on weekends but, WOW! Last week was the hearing on five different anti-abortion bills and it was quite a night. We had a HUGE number of The Womxn Project supporters call, write and show up in person to testify and make their voices heard. We are so grateful for the many folks who stayed late into the evening to get loud to push back on insulting and insidious attacks on the ability to provide or seek abortions in our state. But there are more games being played that we need your attention to as well…
THE WORK CONTINUES this week as the (1) Let RI Vote Act comes up for a vote and (2) a HORRIBLE bill like the ones we have seen in other states that bars discussion of racism and privilege and also has the HATEFUL “don’t say gay” type language we have also seen in far too many places.
This is disgusting, harmful and out of touch with Rhode Island values! We have a chance to do something about it.
MONDAY, APRIL 11th – NO ON RACIST, ANTI-GAY, ANTI-TRANS HOUSE BILL 7539!
- Send in letter to the committee. Click here to find their emails. PLEASE, copy and paste every committee member into a message and send RIGHT AWAY. We realize it is a complicted bill and have provided language on the pieces that are of the most concern.
Subject subject: AGAINST H7539 (anti-gay, anti-trans, anti-racial justice)
Sample: “My name is___. I am a Rhode Island voter. I am writing to express strong opposition to H7539. This bill is a copycat of some of the worst legislation we are seeing around the country right now. It makes it so teachers can’t have real conversations about the history of this country and current events in a way that helps young people to understand how race and privilege impacts different communities. It also has the awful “don’t say gay” type language many states are pushing by specifically barring discussion of sexual orientation and gender identity. This is incredibly harmful to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendner young people in our schools, but also goes against efforts to create inclusive schools where we respect all people. Finally, it also has language around not being able to teach about politial activism, which sounds like an attack on the ability of government teachers to talk about organizing and protests, which regardless of any particular political stance is troubling given that this is supposed to be a participatory democracy where we each get a voice in t he laws and policies of our nation. This bill is concerning for many reasons and way out of touch with the values of our state. Please, vote NO ON H7539. Thank you.”
- Please, also send a copy of your letter/written testimony to the House Education Committee clerk, so it will go into the record as opposition to this hateful, harmful bill: [email protected].
- Attend the hearing (wear your TWP t-shirt if you have one) along with the many groups organizing to defeat this bill. You can testify or just be there in solidarity. It will start around 4pm Monday in the House Lounge.
** see the free #transrightsarehumanrights downloads below!
AND WE HAVE GOOD NEWS, TOO!! After thousands of letters sent from supporters like YOU, the Let Rhode Island Vote Act getting a vote in the Senate Judiciary Committee on Tuesday. This is very exciting!!
- You can send in a letter of support via the website – or send a short email to the committee members.
- Show up along with the Let RI Vote Coalition of which we are PROUD members: Meet up around 4pm on Tuesday, April 12th in Room 313.
- Send in written testimony/letter of support: [email protected].
Sample Subject: FOR S2007 (voting rights and access)
Sample Letter/Email (for clerk and committee members): “My name is___. I am a Rhode Island voter. I am writing to express strong support of the “Let Rhode Island Vote Act” (S 2007), which improves voting access and ensures that more Rhode Islanders are able to have a voice in the system that impacts our health, our families and our day to day lives. Please, vote yes on this important bill. I hope the General Assembly will also continue to advance the bill to move towards same day voter registration. Thank you.”
We know that protecting the right to vote it essential to all the issues that we care about. Whether we are looking at defending LGBT equality or access to abortion, moving towards a living wage or strengthening the RI Works program – any and every issue we care about is impacted by our ability to vote and have a say in who writes the public policies of our state!
We have work to do to ensure a more just Rhode Island. Saying NO TO HATE and PROTECTING OUR RIGHT TO VOTE are critical to that vision. Thank you for helping to make an impact on the bills that are being heard this week and thank you for all that you do. Together, we are making a difference!