Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Bitter Sweet Victory!!!

Yesterday a group of us went down to Springfield to show our disgust at how a House Bill regarding women's reproductive health access is being reviewed by the Agriculture Committee! Yes, you read correctly the agriculture committee. So we went down wearing T-Shirts that displayed a cow on the front and "women are not live stock" on the back.

It was both sad and ridiculous that we had to sit and hear the committee discuss bills pertaining to muskrats, farming, road kill etc. then in the same breath discuss a bill on abortion facilities regulations. I felt so degraded and unimportant. It felt like everyone that sat on that committee had embodied the messages that the several billboards displayed "Black children are an endangered species"! Is this h0w they really feel about us as black human beings? Is this how they really feel about women? We are human just as those people that sat on that committee were; so how dare you discuss my well being in terms of farm animals.

So we sat there and heard them discuss HB 3156 which would impose medically unnecessary and expensive regulations on abortion providers. Abortion providers would have to remodel facilities and go through new licensing procedures in order to comply. The goal of this legislation is make it more complicated and expensive so that medical providers are driven away from providing abortion care. HB 3156 is a direct assault on a Consent Decree in the federal lawsuit Ragsdale v. Turnock. There is no medical evidence that adding more regulations beyond what was agreed to in Ragsdale will make abortion safer. What is true is that, if enacted, HB 3156 will result in renewed litigation and a big legal bill for the State of Illinois. So the end result was it passed through committee. Although thats bad news, the fight is not over. We have contact our legislators and encourage them to vote NO!

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