Sunday, February 19, 2012

SPEAK LOUDLY WITH SILENCE for Virginia women (a silent protest) #F20

There are a number of bills up for debate and vote in the Virginia legislature that are direct attacks on women's rights. It's practically unfathomable that this is happening in 2012, yet is it. Though I'm not a Virginian, I stand with my sisters and brothers in Virginia in their powerful protest tomorrow. If by any chance you are able to physically be present tomorrow at the capitol in Richmond, please do so. Below are descriptions of the bills.

* HB 1: Grants fertilized eggs the status of persons under Virginia law, subject only to the U.S. Constitution and U.S. Supreme Court precedents. The wording of this bill is also particularly dangerous as it has been purposely left vague enough possibly deem not reporting miscarriages illegal, abortion as murder, and lead to the criminalization of birth control.

* HB 261; HB 462; SB 279; SB 484: Mandatory Ultrasound before AbortionHouse

*HB 62; If passed would withdraw authorization for Medicaid funding for termination of pregnancy for eligible women whose pregnancies have been found to be complicated by serious fetal anomalies. The serious fetal anomalies could cause suffering and psychological distress as these women consider the very difficult decision to continue or terminate the pregnancy. It is wrong to force economically-disadvantaged women to bear and care for a child with severe and incapacitating birth defects simply because they lack the financial resources or insurance to pay for an abortion. State funding for pregnancy termination in these limited circumstances demonstrates compassion toward women in distress. (Adapted from VA ACOG Suggested Statement on H.B. 62)

* HB 1285; SB 637: Prohibits abortion after 20 weeks gestation unless, in reasonable medical judgment, the mother’s life is at risk or the mother is at risk of substantial and irreversible physical impairment of a major bodily function.

* HB 464; SB 496: Creates the state’s health care exchange under the federal Affordable Care Act but prohibits the sale of insurance coverage for abortions, except when the pregnancy endangers the mother’s life or is the result of rape or incest.

(The info above is adapted from the ACLU VA, visit VA ACLU for more information: )

*VA TRAP Laws or Targeted Regulations against Abortion Providers, are laws that require women’s health centers to follow regulations that other, similar outpatient medical facilities do not. These laws limit women’s access to abortions, by either forcing some centers to close because they cannot meet the new requirements, or by driving up the cost of abortion procedures so much that some women can no longer afford them. (This was adapted from


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