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Results tagged “state affiliates” from Blog for Choice

Yesterday, we hosted our first ever pro-choice #AskNARAL Google Hangout featuring Ilyse Hogue, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America, Vice President for Policy Donna Crane, and Political Director Erika West. The hangout was moderated by our Director of Public Affairs and recent honoree of Planned Parenthood's Defenders of Choice, Samantha Gordon.

In case you missed the opportunity to tune in, watch our hangout below:

Our friends and activists submitted so many fantastic questions to #AskNARAL about choice-related issues and our strategy to go on offense - we didn't have time to answer them all!

Here are few questions we didn't have a chance to address in our live hangout:

We're working to expose anti-choice "crisis pregnancy centers" (CPCs) for lying to and shaming women who are seeking accurate information about their full range of reproductive-health options. We recently held an online week of action in partnership with the Feminist Majority Foundation to call out CPCs and we worked with our affiliate NARAL Pro-Choice Minnesota to hold a CPC accountable for distributing misinformation and lashing out at a pro-choice student organizer who criticized it in Minnesota. Several of our state affiliates have produced top-notch reports analyzing CPCs. Be sure to check out our Exposing Fake Clinics Tumblr and website for more information on CPCs.

We all share the goal of preventing unintended pregnancies and reducing the need for abortion. Studies show time and again that when women have access to contraception, the rates of unintended pregnancies, and therefore demand for abortion care, decreases.

As a movement, we all need to do a better job of empowering pro-choice individuals from all ethnic and economic backgrounds. One way we're working to increase diversity in the pro-choice movement is by helping to elect pro-choice men and women of color who can bring their unique experiences and knowledge of diverse communities into the political sphere. We will continue to highlight a diverse set of voices so that, together, we can enact pro-choice policies that help protect and expand reproductive rights in all communities.

Visit our state affiliates' pages to learn more about work in the states and how you can get involved in protecting choice in your community.

All people should have the right to decide when, whether and with whom to have children, so our issues relate very closely. We support marriage equality and we will fight with our LGBT allies to ensure politicians stay out of our private lives and decisions.

Check out a great article published last month that breaks down the cost of defending anti-choice measures for five states.

We're working on expanding reproductive access both at the state and federal levels. We've celebrated a pro-choice win in California, where the governor signed legislation that increases the number of medical professionals who can provide early abortion care. And states like New York and Washington are making women's health and equality part of their agenda this year by introducing measures to protect and expand women's access.

As an organization, we don't litigate, but we do work closely with groups that do, including our coalition partners, and we support many national and local initiatives to stop anti-choice attacks in the states and protect women's reproductive freedom across the country.

We can't thank you enough for making our #AskNARAL hangout a great success and for submitting so many important questions about choice.

Uniting Against the War on Women


While anti-choice politicians were busy pretending they'd never heard of their War on Women, Americans throughout the country came together to stop it.

Our state affiliates in Connecticut, Illinois, Maryland, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, South Dakota, Virginia, and Wisconsin participated in rallies in their communities on Saturday.

And NARAL Pro-Choice America's own Samantha Gordon went down to Tallahassee, Fla. to join together with pro-choice activists there.

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It's a pretty stark contrast: blustering anti-choice politicians on one side, and pro-choice people power on the other!

NARAL Affiliates Take to the Hill


After a weekend getting fired up to STOP the War on Women, NARAL Pro-Choice America's state affiliates went to Capitol Hill yesterday to meet with members of Congress from their states. They visited nearly 50 offices in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives!

NARAL Pro-Choice California staff had the opportunity to meet with pro-choice hero Rep. Judy Chu (D-Calif.).

They thanked Rep. Chu for being one of the leading voices against the War on Women. They also had the chance to talk with her about the dangers of anti-choice "crisis pregnancy centers" (CPCs) that mislead and deceive women.

And today, Rep. Chu signed on as a cosponsor to the Stop Deceptive Advertising for Women's Services Act!

This bill would stop CPCs from using false or misleading advertising to lure women into their storefront operations.

Staff from NARAL Pro-Choice Texas went to the office of pro-choice Rep. Lloyd Doggett (D-Texas) to let him know that pro-choice Texans have got his back.

This kind of pro-choice visibility adds to our day-to-day communication with our allies on the Hill. We have channeled more than 550,000 messages to Congress opposing the War on Women--so lawmakers know the NARAL family has backup.

It's also important that our allies know we're holding Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and his anti-choice cohorts in the House leadership accountable. These politicians claim to want less government interference in our lives, but it seems what they really want is government that's just small enough to fit in your bedroom or inside your medicine cabinet.

Kudos to our state affiliates for meeting with senators and representatives from their states.

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NARAL Affiliates Come Together to Stop the War on Women


This weekend, NARAL Pro-Choice America's state affiliates came together in Washington, D.C. for a summit to stop the War on Women.

Created with Admarket's flickrSLiDR.

These are the folks who work day in and day out to ensure that women continue to have the right to make personal, private medical decisions. They've had their hands full this year, with unprecedented attacks on women's freedom and privacy coming from many state legislatures. It was great to get to meet with these tireless champions of choice, swap stories, and share strategies. I salute all of our state affiliates for the work they do on the ground!

We were also honored to have several amazing guest speakers at the summit. Yesterday, Kierra Johnson, executive director of Choice USA, joined our own Nancy Keenan in rallying us on mobilizing Millennials.

Millennials--those of us born after 1980--are the largest and most diverse generation in our nation's history, and we grew up with Roe v. Wade as the law of the land. Our generation is more pro-choice than the country overall. In fact, younger men are even more pro-choice than younger women.

Engaging and energizing the pro-choice Millennial generation is key to winning the future for the right to choose. Thanks so much, Kierra and Nancy, for leading the session! 

Today, Susannah Baruch, policy director of Generations Ahead, and Loretta Ross, national coordinator of SisterSong: Women of Color Reproductive Justice Collective, led a session on fighting back against the race-based billboard attacks popping up across the country.

These billboards are part of a cynical campaign by anti-choice activists to divide communities of color on the issue of abortion. No woman's reproductive choices should be questioned or subjected to more scrutiny or control based on her racial or ethnic background--and that's exactly what these billboards do.

Kudos to Susannah and Loretta for leading the fight to protect every woman's right to choose!

And thanks to all of our state affiliates for making the trek inside the Beltway to share your strength. Only in unity can we stop this War on Women.

Highlights and Lowlights: Your Round-Up from the States


There was a flurry of choice-related headlines from the states this week--some of them very, very good, some of them horrid.

Let's get the horrid news out of the way:

The commonwealth of Virginia has seen more than its fair share of extreme attacks on a woman's right to choose this year. a state board voted to adopt politically motivated rules governing health centers that provide abortion care. The new regulations threaten to close 21 abortion providers. So, women lose access to abortion care as a result of the policies passed by anti-choice politicians. As Tarina Keene, executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia, stated clearly, the personal is connected to the political:

These regulations, singling out women's health centers for burdensome and medically-unnecessary new requirements, remind us once again the importance of elections. NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia will be working in the next few months to hold anti-choice elected officials accountable by mobilizing voters to elect candidates to the state General Assembly who will not play politics with women's health.

Let's cross the Potomac and get back to Washington, D.C., where a Senate committee passed a bill that does NOT include the D.C. abortion ban. You know, it's the ban that blocks the city's elected leaders from using local funds to provide abortion care to low-income women.

(Yes, I know D.C. is not a state. That's why Congress has control over the city's local affairs in the first place.)

Our activists flooded Senate offices with tons of messages, so it's good to see this bit of progress, even though the bill has a long, long way to go.

Now...are you ready for the straight-up good news of the weekend? I thought so.

For that, let's go to the Granite State. (You know, the place where Rep. Michele Bachmann thinks the Revolutionary War started.) You might recall that a state council in New Hampshire voted to end a contract with Planned Parenthood that threatened thousands of residents' access to contraception, cancer screenings, and other basic care.

You may also remember one council member, Raymond Wieczorek, who expressed his thoughts on women who use contraception:

If they want to have a good time, why not let them pay for it?

Well, this week, Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (a past recipient of NARAL Pro-Choice America's Champion of Choice award) announced that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services will ensure that residents of the state continue to have affordable access to these critical services.

NARAL Pro-Choice New Hampshire summed it up in this way:

We applaud Sen. Shaheen for her leadership in standing up for women's access to basic, affordable health care in our state. The Executive Council played politics with the health care of thousands of New Hampshire men and women. The public outrage, combined with Sen. Shaheen's persistence and the Obama administration's decision to ensure women's access to contraception and cancer screenings, made this important victory possible. But we encourage New Hampshire residents to continue to let their elected officials know that blatant political attacks on women's health are unacceptable.

As we told our good friend Felicity Huffman, it's best to end on a good note.

Paid for by NARAL Pro-Choice America,, and not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee.

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Power in the States: NARAL Affiliates Come to D.C.


NARAL Pro-Choice America's work to protect a woman's right to choose would be incomplete without our network of state affiliates. These affiliates work in 20 states, fighting on the ground and in state houses to ensure that women have the right to make personal, private medical decisions.

This weekend, we're getting our state affiliates together in Washington, D.C. for an epic summit. The theme is "Stop the War on Women: Organize to Win." With this year's slew of attacks on women's freedom and privacy in state legislatures, our affiliates have been on the front lines organizing, mobilizing, and strategizing. All of them give 110 percent every day, and the summit will be a chance for everyone in the NARAL family to collaborate, hone our skills, and share our strengths.

You can follow along with our affiliate summit this Saturday through Monday on Twitter. We'll be using the hashtag #NARALsummit throughout the weekend.

Follow us at @NARAL and be sure to check our affiliates' handles:

@ProChoiceOH @prochoiceMT @ProChoiceNY @ProChoiceMD @ProChoiceCA @naraltx @ProChoiceCT @ProChoiceMN @ProChoiceAZ @NARALNC @NARALSD @ProChoiceWA @prochoiceoregon @NARALColorado @NARALWisconsin @ProChoiceMass @NARALVirginia @icatillinois

We'll also share stories from our speeches and workshops on our Facebook page.

Our state affiliates do amazing work, and I'm excited to work with them this weekend at the summit. Check out our updates!

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