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Add "Accommodating Pregnant Workers" to Rhode Island's Reasons to be Proud

Posted by Abigail Bar-Lev, Fellow | Posted on: July 01, 2015 at 09:50 am

Rhode Island was the thirteenth state to enter the Union in May of 1790, and the first of the thirteen colonies to renounce allegiance to the British monarchy.  As we approach Independence Day, Rhode Island has a lot to be proud of. And now it can add accommodating pregnant workers to that list.

Just last week, Governor Raimondo signed Rhode Island’s pregnancy accommodation bill into law. With this bill, passed unanimously, Rhode Island joins fifteen other states that make it unmistakable: employers must provide reasonable accommodations for pregnant workers.

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King v. Burwell: Victory for Women's Health!

Posted by Alex Hahn, Intern | Posted on: June 29, 2015 at 02:14 pm

Crisis averted! The Supreme Court ruled 6-3 in favor of the Affordable Care Act. The case, King v. Burwell, challenged a key component of the law.

As a 24-year-old graduate student, I spend most of my time focusing on classes, internships and making the most of my time in school. My time shouldn’t be spent worrying about my health insurance. Before the ACA, my options for health insurance wouldn’t have been great. Fortunately, the law created more options for people like me. In particular, it provides tax credits to help people with low and moderate incomes buy health insurance through the Marketplace. About 28 percent of those enrolled in the Marketplace are young adults 18-34. A recent Supreme Court case put this coverage at risk.

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Young Parents Deserve Dignity in Health Care, Housing, and Child Care, Too!

Posted by Allie Bohm, Legal Intern | Posted on: June 29, 2015 at 10:36 am

Last week, I wrote about the recent Title IX Anniversary Young Parents with Dignity Briefing, which was co-sponsored by the National Women’s Law Center. But, I didn’t tell you the full story (too many words for one blog post!). The young mothers also talked about their struggles finding affordable healthcare, housing, and childcare.

Leydi Bautista, one of the young mothers on the panel, characterized her housing hunt as follows: “Discrimination comes first … I can afford to pay [the rent], but the [would-be landlord] asks all these questions that are uncomfortable like, ‘How big is your family?’ ‘Are you planning to have more kids?’”

Shatia Burks, another young mother panelist, who had graduated high school at age 15 and started college, nonetheless found herself homeless after her pregnancy, surrounded by the refrain that having a child would ruin her life. She was unable to enroll in Medicaid, because she refused to name her son’s father, a man who had been a toxic force and whom she did not want to have rights to her kid.

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Seven Reasons I Am Having a Dance Party in My Office Right Now

Posted by Rachel Easter, Fellow | Posted on: June 26, 2015 at 04:27 pm

For the past few years, the end of June has brought bad news. Two years ago the Voting Rights Act was struck down and the Texas legislature passed HB 2 despite Wendy’s Davis heroic filibuster. Last year the Supreme Court decided Hobby Lobby and completely ignored women’s health. But things in 2015 are looking up! This year, the end of June has given us a lot to celebrate.

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Love Wins: Supreme Court Recognizes Marriage Equality

Posted by Elizabeth Johnston, Fellow | Posted on: June 26, 2015 at 04:01 pm

Today, the Supreme Court issued a landmark decision [PDF],holding that “same-sex couples may exercise the fundamental right to marry” and guaranteeing that the right to marry the person you love no longer depends on where you live. In doing so, the Supreme Court recognized that the Constitutions protections “extend to certain personal choices central to individual dignity and autonomy, including intimate choices that define personal identity and beliefs.”

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Iowa Supreme Court Protects Women's Access to Abortion

Posted by Rachel Easter, Fellow | Posted on: June 26, 2015 at 03:55 pm

Iowans won big on Friday when the state Supreme Court voted 6-0 to strike down a prohibition on the use of telemedicine for medication abortion. In August 2013, the Iowa Board of Medicine banned the use of telemedicine for medication abortion by requiring doctors to meet in-person with patients before prescribing the necessary medications. Ignoring the fact that telemedicine for medication abortion is extremely safe, the Board shut down the country’s first program while claiming to care about health and safety. Rightly, the Iowa Supreme Court considered the facts and struck down the restriction because it imposed an unconstitutional burden on the right of Iowa women to access abortion.

The Importance of Iowa’s Telemedicine Program

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On Title IX's Birthday, Young Parents Demand Dignity

Posted by Allie Bohm, Legal Intern | Posted on: June 26, 2015 at 03:43 pm

Leydi Bautista’s son looked at the ad in the New York City subway featuring a picture of a toddler crying with the caption, “I’m twice as likely not to graduate high school because you had me as a teen.

“Mom,” he said, “is that me? Am I not going to succeed because you had me young?”

Leydi told this story to a room full of congressional staffers and policy advocates as part of a young parents’ panel at this week’s Young Parents’ Dignity Agenda Briefing, which was hosted by several youth advocacy and reproductive justice organizations, including the National Women’s Law Center, on the 43rd anniversary of Title IX.

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Happy Anniversary, Title IX

Posted by Katherine Protil, Intern | Posted on: June 26, 2015 at 03:04 pm

On a hot Tuesday afternoon, social justice advocates gathered in the Russell Senate building in D.C. to pop champagne, munch on cupcakes, and celebrate the 43rd anniversary of the passage of Title IX.

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