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10/31/2014 - Federal Judge Exempts Another Catholic University from Birth Control Coverage
A federal judge ruled Tuesday that Ave Maria University, a Catholic university in Florida, does not have to comply with federal rules meant to ensure that covered employees can exercise their right to obtain birth control at no cost. The Affordable Care Act requires all new health insurance plans to cover all FDA-approved contraceptives - such as the pill, emergency contraceptives, and IUDs - without charging co-pays, deductibles or co-insurance....

10/27/2014 - Tennessee OB/GYNs Urge Voters to Reject Amendment 1
A coalition of local doctors is urging Tennesseans to vote no on Amendment 1, an anti-abortion ballot measure that one doctor called "a setback for women's rights." During a press conference at a Planned Parenthood facility in Nashville last week, one obstetrician-gynecologist warned that Amendment 1 would give politicians the right to make medical decisions they aren't qualified to make. "Supporting Amendment 1 will erode a woman's fundamental right to autonomous decision-making and privacy regarding her own health care," Dr....

10/23/2014 - All of Tennessee's Major Newspapers Have Urged Voters to Reject Anti-Abortion Amendment 1
All four of Tennessee's major papers have spoken out to oppose Amendment 1, a dangerous anti-abortion measure that will be decided by voters this fall....

10/22/2014 - Doctors Warn That Measure 1 Would End In Vitro Fertilization in North Dakota
Doctors at North Dakota's only clinic offering in vitro fertilization (IVF) are speaking out to warn voters that Measure 1, a proposed personhood amendment in the state, would make the practice illegal. Dr....

10/21/2014 - Hulu Silences Rape Survivor Speaking Out Against Anti-Abortion Amendment 67 in Colorado
Hulu, an online, ad-supported streaming service, has refused to run an advertisement from the "No on 67" campaign in Colorado, citing the company's policy regarding "controversial" political positions on issues like abortion. In a letter to the CEO of Hulu, dated October 10, the Vote No on 67 Campaign, which is supported by the Feminist Majority Foundation, asked the company to reconsider its unwillingness to air a 35-second spot featuring a rape survivor's testimony about the far-reaching impact of Colorado's proposed Amendment 67....

10/14/2014 - Activist Dolores Huerta Fights for Reproductive Rights in Colorado
Legendary human rights leader Dolores Huerta will be in Denver, Colorado next Friday to Get Out the Vote for the 2014 election. Huerta, a Presidential Medal of Freedom honoree, will be on the educational facility the Auraria Campus to take a stand against proposed Amendment 67, a personhood initiative on the Colorado ballot this Fall aimed at restricting abortion and birth control access. If passed, Amendment 67 would extend the definition of "person" and "child" to a fertilized egg in the Colorado criminal code and Wrongful Death Act....

10/10/2014 - Catholic Church Files Civil Rights Complaint Against State Over Abortion Mandate
California's Catholic leaders have filed a civil rights complaint with the Department of Health and Human Services over a recent decision by the state to mandate that religiously affiliated universities there offer full abortion coverage in their employees' health care plans. Earlier this year, the California Lawyer learned that despite the state's commitment to fully protect comprehensive reproductive rights, two Catholic universities - Loyola Marymount and Santa Clara - had discontinued coverage for "not medically necessary" abortion services for their employees....

10/6/2014 - Religious Leaders Unite in Tennessee and Colorado to Oppose Extreme Anti-Abortion Ballot Measures
Local religious leaders have come together to denounce ballot measures in Tennessee and Colorado that, if passed, would jeopardize access to abortion in those states. At Sunday services last week, local clergy from Southern Baptist, Assemblies of God, United Pentecostal, Presbyterian and Free Will Baptist churches, as well as leaders of other faiths, spoke out against Tennessee's Amendment 1, which would allow the government to interfere with women's personal health decisions....

9/25/2014 - New Legislation Would Improve Access to Emergency Contraception for Survivors of Sexual Assault
Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) introduced legislation this week to make emergency contraception more widely available to survivors of sexual assault. The Emergency Contraception Access and Education Act of 2014, co-sponsored by Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) and Cory Booker (D-NJ), would require hospitals that receive federal funding - including Catholic hospitals - to tell sexual assault survivors who go to the emergency room that emergency contraception (EC) is available to them and to provide EC to survivors regardless of their ability to pay. Murray has introduced a similar bill every year for more than a decade....

8/4/2014 - New Bills Would Advance Reproductive Healthcare Gains of Affordable Care Act
Two new bills introduced in Congress could help improve health outcomes for people of color, low income communities, and female members of the U.S....

7/23/2014 - Campaign Against Colorado Personhood Initiative Launches
Women's rights organizations, medical groups, and religious leaders joined several activists yesterday at a rally on the steps of the Colorado state capitol to launch a campaign against a new personhood initiative on the state's November ballot. The No on 67 campaign opposes Amendment 67, otherwise known as the Brady Amendment, a proposed constitutional amendment that would change the definition of "person" and "child" in the Colorado Criminal Code and Wrongful Death act to include "unborn human beings." A similar initiative was on the ballot in 2008 and 2010, but it was defeated both times by a wide margin. If passed, the amendment would have extreme repercussions, banning abortion in all cases, emergency contraception and birth control, and possibly in-vitro fertilization....

7/8/2014 - Democrats to Introduce Bill Reversing Hobby Lobby Decision
Democrats in the House and Senate are expected to introduce companion bills today to reverse the US Supreme Court's decision in Burwell v....

7/7/2014 - SCOTUS Decision On Wheaton College May Expand Hobby Lobby
In an unsigned order issued on Thursday, a majority of the US Supreme Court granted a temporary emergency injunction to Wheaton College, a Christian college in Illinois, ruling that the school does not have to comply with the Affordable Care Act (ACA)contraceptive coverage benefit, prompting a severe rebuke from the three women Justices. The decision comes on the heels of the Court's 5-4 decision in Burwell v....

6/12/2014 - Sixth Circuit Rejects Challenge to ACA Birth Control Benefit
In a unanimous decision, a panel of the US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit ruled yesterday that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) birth control coverage benefit does not violate the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) or the First Amendment, upholding two lower courts' denial of a preliminary injunction against the law to a group of Catholic-affiliated non-profit entities. The ACA requires health insurance providers to cover preventive health services - including all FDA-approved contraceptives, such as the pill, emergency contraceptives, and IUDs - without charging co-pays, deductibles or co-insurance....

6/9/2014 - Anti-Choice Group Asks SCOTUS to Review New York City's CPC Regulations
The American Center for Law and Justice asked the US Supreme Court Friday to review a federal appeals court decision reinstating parts of New York City's landmark set of regulations for Crisis Pregnancy Centers (CPCs), or "fake clinics." Earlier this year, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the portion of the New York City law, passed in 2011, that requires CPCs operating in New York City to disclose whether or not a licensed medical professional works on-site at the facility....

5/21/2014 - Mississippi Personhood Initiative Fails
A campaign to put a "personhood" initiative on Mississippi's November 2015 ballot failed last week after the initiative's organizers - Personhood Mississippi - did not turn in petitions with the required number of signatures on time. The measure, known as Initiative 41, proposed to amend the Mississippi state constitution to create an "inalienable right to life" beginning at conception....

5/12/2014 - Bill Extending Abortion Coverage to Peace Corps Volunteers Re-Introduced
Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Representative Nita Lowey (D-NY-17) re-introduced the Peace Corps Equity Act in the Senate and House last week....

3/4/2014 - FDA Broadens Access to Emergency Contraception Over-the-Counter
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced last week that generic versions of Plan B One Step will now be available over-the-counter to women of all ages. The FDA removed age and point-of-sale restrictions on Teva Pharmaceutical's Plan B One Step in June 2013, but the agency also gave Teva a three-year protection from generic competition, meaning that generic versions of the emergency contraception (EC) could only be obtained behind the pharmacy counter and only be obtained without a prescription by women over 17 years old....

1/22/2014 - Federal Appeals Court Reinstates CPC Regulation in New York City
A federal appeals court reinstated a portion of a 2011 New York City law that regulates Crisis Pregnancy Centers, known as CPCs or fake clinics....

12/23/2013 - Study Finds Pharmacists Misinform Teens Seeking Emergency Contraception
Pharmacists often give teens misleading information about emergency contraception that may prevent them from obtaining it, according to a new study in the Journal of Adolescent Health. After pediatrician Dr....

12/17/2013 - FMF Releases Video on ACA Enrollment
Feminist Majority Foundation released a short video today detailing the benefits of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and urging people to Get Covered for the Holidays through the state Health Insurance Marketplaces....

9/23/2013 - IHS Expands Plan B Access for Native American Women
Indian Health Services (IHS), the agency that provides most primary health care services for American Indian and Alaska Native people free of charge, will now provide emergency contraception without a consultation or prescription at its federally-operated facilities....

8/20/2013 - Judges Blocks Law Restricting OTC Emergency Contraception
On Monday, a state court temporarily blocked an Oklahoma law that would require persons 17 years or younger to have a prescription to access emergency contraception and require proof of age before purchasing the medication....

7/24/2013 - Teva Pharmaceuticals Gets Exclusive Rights to OTC Emergency Contraception
The US Food and Drug Administration has given Teva Pharmaceuticals, the makers of brand name emergency contraception pill Plan B One-Step, exclusive rights to sell their product on store shelves without age restrictions for three years....

7/22/2013 - Hobby Lobby Win Injunction Against Birth Control Mandate
After receiving a temporary injunction from US District Judge Joe Heaton last week, Hobby Lobby will now be exempted from the Affordable Care Act stipulation that requires employer-based insurance plans to cover various birth control methods at no extra cost to employees until October 1, 2013....