Yearly Archives: 2014

12 posts

January 7-13 Weekly News Round Up

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

By Tess Koenigsmark

Governor Malloy has created a new cabinet-level disability advocate position. The responsibilities of the new position include making policy recommendations and outreach to people with disabilities.

Thursday, an all-male House of Representatives subcommittee held a hearing on the No Taxpayer Funding For Abortion Act. And why yes, it IS already illegal for federal funds to pay for abortion. But, anti-abortion supporters has never let logic stop them before, and they’re certainly not going to start now. The proposed bill would ban private insurance plans sold through the Affordable Care Act’s insurance exchanges from providing abortion coverage and tax small business owners who want to provide their employees abortion coverage. Since this bill will never leave the House, the hearing was simply an excuse for anti-choice representatives to engage in some terribly ill informed grandstanding.

Connecticut Representative Rosa DeLauro is awesome, but you already knew that.

The Supreme Court will hear an anti-choice challenge to a Massachusetts “buffer zone” law. Buffer zones were created to protect abortion clinic patients from harassment and violence at the hands of anti-choice protestors.  The zones generally strike a compromise between free speech and the safety of patients, prohibiting protesters within a certain number of feet from clinics while still providing a space for them to continue with their regularly scheduled activity of screaming terribly offensive things at women. Anti-choicer activists will argue that such laws violate free speech.

Connecticut’s health insurance exchange expands coverage for Hartford residents.

Watch Katie Couric get schooled (gracefully) after she asks two transgender TV celebrities offensive and inappropriately invasive questions.

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New Year Weekly News Round Up: December 30-January 5

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

By Tess Koenigsmark

On Tuesday, Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor granted an injunction to several religious organizations, temporarily exempting them from the birth control mandate that they argue violates their religious liberties. While frustrating, this isn’t a major concern yet, as the injunction is temporary and only applies to a handful of organizations. Justice Sotomayor can elect to decide the case herself or refer it to the Court. On Friday, the Obama administration responded in defense of the birth control mandate, asking the Court not to extend the injunction.

Connecticut’s minimum wage increased from $8.25 per hour to $8.70 per hour on Wednesday, and supporters hope that the wage hike will help lift many people out of poverty. Unfortunately, CT’s minimum wage is still not a living wage, and several other states have higher minimum wages than CT. For a liberal state with a high cost of living, it seems like we could still do better. Oh, and economists agree that a higher minimum wage would reduce poverty, so there’s that.

How will the Affordable Care Act affect healthcare in CT in 2014?

Senator Chris Murphy and juvenile justice advocates are opposing Connecticut’s decision to create a new locked facility for girls. Advocates argue that these facilities become self-fulfilling prophecies; once they’re built, their existence tends to justify their continued use.

Insurance company UnitedHealthcare is being sued by two Connecticut medical associations for dropping a large number of physicians from its Medicare Advantage network. State officials are supporting the medical associations, voicing concerns over how the move would impact healthcare access for the elderly and other vulnerable populations.

A woman in Texas is being kept alive on life support against both her own previously expressed wishes and those of her family solely because she is pregnant. Marlise Munoz was 14 weeks pregnant when she was brought to the hospital unconscious after collapsing in her home. Texas law prohibits taking pregnant women off of life support regardless of their wishes, cruelly extending the agony and suffering of Munoz’s family. Even worse, many other states have the same law on the books as Texas.

The Nation reflects on “The Year in Feminism”

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