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This was released today…

An open letter to Governor McCrory from local elected officials opposed to sweeping restrictions on women’s health

July 25, 2013 

The Honorable Pat McCrory
Office of the Governor
State of North Carolina 

Dear Governor McCrory,

As municipal and county elected officials, we write to oppose SB353, the omnibus abortion bill titled Health and Safety Law Changes.

SB 353 is not only an intrusion into the deeply personal and private health care decisions North Carolina women and their families face, but also an intrusion into the affairs of local governments who want to ensure that health plans offered to their employees, to the extent possible, cover their health care needs. Read More

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From today’s Charlotte Observer:

Doctors to N.C. legislators: Get out of our exam rooms
By Jeanne A. Conry and Haywood L. Brown

North Carolina is yet another example of legislators wanting to play doctor, telling real doctors how to practice medicine and how to care for our patients. Medical decisions must be based on scientific evidence and made by patients in consultation with physicians, not the state or federal government.

Let’s be clear. Senate Bill 132 and Senate Bill 353 collectively have one purpose: To restrict the reproductive rights of women in North Carolina by interfering with the practice of medicine. The two leading state ob-gyn associations – the North Carolina Obstetrical and Gynecological Society and the North Carolina Section of The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists – have joined together to stand against these bills because they undermine the very fabric of what’s important: Patient safety and access to quality medical care for all women in our state.

ACOG respects our members’ deeply held personal beliefs on abortion. While we can agree to disagree about abortion on ideological grounds, we must draw a hard line against any legislation that threatens women’s health. That’s why we’re setting the record straight for all politicians: Get out of our exam rooms.

Read the rest by clicking here.

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Last Monday, reproductive freedom supporter Dianna Wynn joined in with many of her fellow North Carolinians to participate in a Moral Mondays protest. She shared her story with NC Policy Watch:  

My Moral Monday arrest and protest experience
By Dianna Wynn

Participating in public protest demonstrations is not something I do, but that all changed for me when the NC legislature chose to attack women’s reproductive rights. I am outraged at the nature of this legislation and the sneaky process that has produced it. Thus, it was with anger and frustration that I chose to attend Moral Monday on July 8th and engage in the civil disobedience that resulted in my arrest.

I did this not knowing how my family and friends would react. However, the outpouring of support has been overwhelming and often unexpected. Read More

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It’s hard to believe that it was just nine months ago that progressive editorial pages around North Carolina were endorsing Pat McCrory as a “moderate” who would effectively curb extremist inclinations of the state’s far right General Assembly.

Since that time, on issue after issue, the Guv has espoused, defended and signed into law ideas that are as reactionary and far-reaching as they come, anywhere in modern America. 

Now, today, on a subject that seemed to be the last hope for “Moderate Pat” to show up and make a stand (the Charlotte Observer was praising his newfound backbone on the matter just 48 hours ago), the man has, sadly, folded yet again like a cheap suit.

It would appear that today – July 12, 2013 – will go down in history as the day on which any hope for the near-term preservation of North Carolina as a moderate and forward-looking state was officially cast to the wind.

At least folks will have no further illusions about where things stand.       

 

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Professor Lisa Levenstein of UNCG has an excellent piece in this morning’s Greensboro News & Record about the General Assembly’s mad rush to pass new laws law restricting a woman’s right to reproductive freedom.

Proposed new regulations on abortion providers have nothing to do with protecting women’s health. Nothing demonstrates this quite like the tactics Republican leaders have used to try to ram the legislation through the N.C. General Assembly.

At first, draconian abortion restrictions were placed into an anti-Sharia law bill. After public scrutiny began to gather momentum, the new regulations were put into — of all things — a motorcycle safety bill. If advocates are so convinced these new measures are justified, why all the secrecy? Why all the back-room tactics? Why the rush?

GOP leaders argued that the legislation formerly known as House Bill 695, the “Family, Faith, and Freedom Protection Act,” would actually protect women by imposing strict new regulations on abortion providers

“We’re not taking away the rights of women,” insisted Sen. Warren Daniel, one of the primary supporters of the bill. “We’re protecting the health and safety of women across the state.”

Yet the discussion of the bill in the House Health and Human Services Committee meeting on Tuesday morning made it abundantly clear that the true intent of the legislation had little to do with protecting women’s health and everything to do with severely restricting women’s access to abortion….

Read the rest by clicking here.