Let’s Keep the Momentum Up! — Legislation Update

It’s exciting to report some momentum in our women’s agenda. Women’s voices – and women’s votes – may be getting through to more elected officials. Please continue to contact them – there’s more to do (read on).  

Yesterday was a good day for Virginia women. A bill to restrict access to guns for those convicted of domestic violence (Senate Bill 943, patroned by Senator Barbara Favola) and another bill to expand the anti-stalking statute (Senate Bill 1297, patroned by Senator Don McEachin) passed a Senate committee.  

But, as I said, there’s more to do. A companion gun bill (introduced by Delegate Kathleen Murphy, whom NOW members worked to elect) will be heard tomorrow (Friday) in House Militia, Police, and Public Safety Subcommittee #1. It needs immediate calls. The bill (House Bill 2085) would restrict possession of guns by those convicted of domestic abuse, stalking, sexual battery, and other violent misdemeanors.

Please call and email these delegates and ask them to vote YES on HB2085 to keep guns away from domestic abusers: 

Delegate Thomas Wright  (804) 698-1061       DelTWright@house.virginia.gov

Delegate Todd Gilbert       (804) 698-1015      DelTGilbert@house.virginia.gov

Delegate Michael Webert (804) 698-1018       DelMWebert@house.virginia.gov

Delegate Matthew Fariss  (804) 698-1059      DelMFariss@house.virginia.gov 

Delegate Rosalyn Tyler     (804) 698-1075      DelRTyler@house.virginia.gov

There’s also a good anti-stalking bill in the House of Delegates, patroned by Jackson Miller (HB1453). We’ve contacted Delegate Miller about our support for the bill; it should be heard tomorrow.

More great news: The ERA resolution passed the Senate Privileges and Elections Committee and will go to the Senate floor. NOW and our allies in the Women’s Equality Coalition continue to work hard to pass the ERA. Watch Virginia ERA Network for updates.

Bad news: An abortion ban bill has been introduced by Delegate Dave LaRock. The bill, HB2321, would unconstitutionally ban all abortions after 20 weeks. Elections matter! We worked hard to defeat Tea Partier LaRock. All 100 delegate seats and all 40 senate seats are up this November. Our Virginia NOW Political Action Committee (PAC) will again be working hard for candidates who support women and equality.  Stay tuned – we need your support!  

Also

Contact Board of Health
We have until February 11 to submit comments supporting the amended
TRAP regulations for women’s health centers.
Submit your comment today.
Thank you for all you do every day for women and girls.

Marj Signer, Virginia NOW Legislative Vice-President 

Your Story Can Keep VA’s Health Centers Open

BOARD OF HEALTH MEETS DECEMBER 5 FOR ANOTHER VOTE AFFECTING WOMEN’S HEALTH CENTERS! GET YOUR STORY IN AS SOON AS YOU CAN TO HELP IN THE TESTIMONIAL EFFORT TO PREVENT TRAP.

In an effort to highlight the potential impact of health center closures due to TRAP, we are actively recruiting patients and impacted women to share their stories with us. Thus far, we have collected stories around a first visit to get birth control, cancer screenings that led to early diagnosis, and choosing a women’s health provider because it was a trusted place to go.

Ultimately, we want to make sure our stories are representative of the women across the Commonwealth and that Planned Parenthood/Abortion Rights Coalition have enough stories to pull from for Board of Health meetings, reporters, and the General Assembly.

To do that, we ask you to contribute your story. Or, ask a friend to contribute hers. There are many reasons women and families access these health centers. The Board of Health, the media, and our representatives need to be made unable to deny the quality and trusted care that women in Virginia will be denied if the Targeted Restrictions on Abortion Providers are allowed to take their full effect.

At this link you may write your story, state your levels of comfort concerning privacy and publication, and/or share a video of you telling your story.

We encourage you to share this post/email with your friends and colleagues who support choice, responsible family planning, healthy families and children, and access to reasonably priced health care. The Coalition is particularly interested in stories about sexual and reproductive health care.

Please, contribute and share.

For women,
Simone Roberts, Historian / ERA Coordinator
Virginia NOW

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