October 6-13 Weekly News Round Up

A round up of current news story on the state and national level, with a focus on feminist issues

By Tess Koenigsmark

Another stark reminder that the government shutdown has very real consequences: if the it continues, victims of sexual assault in Washington, D.C. may not be able to receive rape kits. The groups that provide such victim services in the nation’s capitol are funded through the federal government.

What you need to know about the expansion of Medicaid, or HUSKY, in Connecticut taking place under the Affordable Care Act.

Chris Powell, managing editor of the local Journal Inquirer, made a fool of himself by writing an op-ed blaming the decline of newspapers on single mothers. Yep, you read that correctly. This happened a couple weeks ago, but is too cringe-worthy not to mention. As might be expected, many reasonable people did not agree with him. Oh, and then he wrote another article clarifying his opinion. Clarifying in this case meant defending his previous article with more fumbling arguments that only aspire to logical thought.

The Supreme Court is currently hearing arguments on McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission, a case that challenges the limit on individual contributions to political campaigns.  Campaign finance reform advocates argue that undoing the contribution limits would only increase the already unfair influence that wealthy individuals can exert on the political process. Connecticut activists held a rally in Hartford to protest the possible changes.

Connecticut Comptroller Kevin Lembo would like the state to create a database to track economic assistance given to corporations, also known as corporate welfare. While legislation to create the database stalled at the Senate, Lembo hopes that a recent report from Rhode Island, disclosing its corporate welfare, might motivate CT to adopt similar practices.

Bridgeport Head Start programs will be able to reopen despite the government shutdown, thanks to a large donation from a philanthropist that will also benefit programs in five other states. While the impact of missed days of preschool on children’s education is a concern, the more immediate issue for many working parents has been the scramble to find childcare.

Friday was “National Coming Out Day”, a day meant to celebrate LGBQT people going public with their sexual orientation or gender identity. While well intentioned, the celebration has become a conflicted one for many. Coming out has real consequences, and the comfort of the individual should always be the first priority in coming out.

Supporters of Marissa Alexander, the Florida woman sentenced to 20 years in prison for firing a warning shot into the ceiling in the presence of her abusive husband, are calling for her release. While Alexander was recently granted a new trial, supporters say that she never should have been prosecuted in the first place. The case of Alexander, a black woman, brought attention to unequal application of Florida’s Stand Your Ground laws.

From RH Reality Check, why reproductive justice advocates should make adoption a central issue.

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