Activist Update: Yes the sky is falling…Together, we will hold up the sky

The last few weeks have been horrendous. The Muslim ban (too often misnamed a travel ban), the decision allowing fake clinics to deny pregnant women truthful information (making a mockery of free speech principles), and the attack on workers (overturning long-standing precedent and striking down public sector union fees).
And then there was the announcement of Justice Kennedy's resignation.

Rinat Dray Decision Proves How Hard it is for Women Subjected to Forced Surgeries to Get Justice

On April 4, 2018, a mid-level New York appeals court ruled against Rinat Dray, reminding us of the enormous challenges women face when they seek redress for obstetric violence through the court system.

In this case Ms. Dray had gone to Staten Island University Hospital to deliver her third child.

Arkansas Court of Appeals Overturns Criminal Conviction for Concealing a Birth

March 14, 2018

The Arkansas Court of Appeals has issued a unanimous ruling reversing Anne Bynum’s conviction for “concealing a birth” that resulted in a sentence of six years in prison. The criminal charge and conviction stemmed from the state’s claims about Ms. Bynum’s actions after she experienced a stillbirth at home in 2015. The three-judge panel found that the trial court in Drew County had abused its discretion by allowing the jury to consider evidence about Ms. Bynum’s past pregnancies and outcomes including abortion, that “clearly prejudiced” the verdict in the case.

NAPW Argues in Arkansas Court of Appeals in Case of Woman Charged with Crimes After Stillbirth

On January 24, 2018, NAPW consulting attorney Dan Arshack argued before the Arkansas Court of Appeals on behalf of Anne Bynum, a woman who experienced a stillbirth at home and was convicted for "concealing a birth" and sentenced to six years in prison after she was alleged to have waited several hours to bring the fetal remains to the hospital and did not tell her mother about her pregnancy.

State of the Union: Who will defend and advocate for the pregnant woman?

During the January 2018 State of the Union address, we heard President Trump declare that his "administration is committed to fighting the drug epidemic and helping get treatment for those in need." But rather than describing how the government will expand access to drug treatment (and no plans have been put forward for an increase in funding this year) he launched into a story about a police officer in New Mexico who saw "a pregnant, homeless woman preparing to inject heroin.

NAPW and Allies Support Rinat Dray

On Monday, December 4th four justices of the Appellate Division of New York Supreme Court heard arguments in the Dray case. Rinat Dray is a mother who is suing Staten Island University Hospital and doctors there because, pursuant to a secret (not disclosed to patients) hospital policy, they forced her to have cesarean surgery even though she clearly refused.

Save the Date for the 2018 Take Root: Red State Perspectives on Reproductive Justice conference: February 23 + 24, 2018 in Norman, OK!

Next year's Take Root: Red State Perspectives on Reproductive Justice conference will be February 23-24, 2018 in Norman, Oklahoma.

Take Root features speakers and leaders from the South and Midwest. Over its 8 year history, this inspiring event has brought people together to connect around a shared commitment to reproductive justice, human rights and resistance.