Nicole Knight is the Western regional reporter with Rewire, where she covers the politics of reproductive health and equality in the Western United States.
She previously covered county government and transportation for the Orange County Register. Her freelance work has exposed camps to train anti-abortion teens and revealed the scare tactics of crisis pregnancy centers. Her writing has appeared in the Guardian, Pacific Standard, and Los Angeles Times.
"Medically unnecessary restrictions like admitting privileges and ambulatory surgical center requirements are state mandated laws thought up by extremists in Jefferson City," Planned Parenthood Great Plains officials said in a statement.
New York City has joined Massachusetts, Puerto Rico, and Philadelphia in a move to enforce gender pay equity. "This has become a fast-moving trend across the country," said Maya Raghu with the National Women’s Law Center.
"If the government doesn’t know how many LGBTQ people live in a community, how can it do its job to ensure we’re getting fair and adequate access to the rights, protections, and services we need?" said Meghan Maury of the National LGBTQ Task Force.
“By repealing these protections, Mr. Trump and congressional Republicans let contractors with even the worst track records off the hook–a punch in the gut to workers, taxpayers, and law-abiding businesses," said Christine Owens, executive director of the National Employment Law Project
"This is one more attempt in a long line of attempts to discriminate against the LGBT community and specifically the transgender community," said SK Rossi, advocacy and policy director for the ACLU of Montana.
"These unconstitutional and harmful laws should have never passed in the first place and this is the outcome states face," said Mistie Tolman, an official with Planned Parenthood Votes Northwest and Hawaii. "We will continue to challenge laws that create barriers to safe, legal abortion."
So-called abortion reversal is "make-believe health care, because it requires doctors to give information that is not accurate,” said Mistie Tolman, Idaho legislative director and public affairs manager with Planned Parenthood Votes Northwest and Hawaii.
The report's authors call public funding restrictions on abortion "state and federally sanctioned classism and racism," as the United States has shifted its public health responsibilities to private donors and nonprofits.
Doctors told Rewire that the Republican-backed legislation imposes an undue and unnecessary burden on physicians and might force the closure of Arizona clinics that can't meet neonatal medical standards.
The legislation would have only permitted abortions after 20 weeks in cases of life endangerment. Violators would have faced civil penalties of at least $500 and the suspension or loss of a medical license.
"It is hard to believe that Mr. Acosta would now be nominated to lead a federal agency tasked with promoting lawful hiring practices and safe workplaces," said Kristen Clarke, executive director of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law.
Workers at Andrew Puzder's restaurants, Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s, were denied breaks, exposed to unsafe work conditions and harassment, and forced to work off the clock or prepare food while they were ill.
A Republican bill directs doctors to check for "evidence of life" during the abortion procedure. Cases of abortion care producing a live birth are exceedingly rare, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
"Hawaii, of course, has long been a bastion of reproductive rights and I’d like to see it stay that way," state Sen. Karl Rhoads wrote. "I expect the Trump administration to push hard on reproductive issues (well, more accurately the [Vice President]) and viewed this as pushing back."
A new report alleges workers in Andrew Puzder's fast-food empire were denied breaks, exposed to unsafe work conditions and harassment, and forced to work off the clock or prepare food while they were ill.
“The U.S. Senate has all the reason it needs to reject this nomination and demand a labor secretary who will look out for working Americans instead of one who looks for ways to keep them down," said Cathy Ruckelshaus, general counsel and program director for the National Employment Law Project.
Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich last year demanded that Camelback Family Planning turn over medical documents about the clinic’s procurement and disposal of fetal tissue, and subpoenaed the clinic director to testify about patient records.
"The study suggests that expanding access to abortion, not restricting it, is what is going to protect women’s mental health," said Dr. M. Antonia Biggs, a researcher with the Advancing New Standards in Reproductive Health program at the University of California, San Francisco.
Jessica Duran had signed a medical consent form that stated: "I understand that the tissue and parts will be removed during the procedure, and I consent to their examination and their use in medical research and their disposal by the clinic and/or physician in the manner they deem appropriate."
The Trump staffer's conviction comes after the president-elect in a tweet leveled unfounded claims of election fraud in Virginia, New Hampshire, and California. He also made the baseless claim that millions voted illegally.
"We're not doctors," said Utah state Rep. Keven Stratton (R-Orem), one of the latest lawmakers to advocate forcing doctors to tell patients that medication abortion is reversible. Arizona doctors called the state's 2015 abortion reversal law "tantamount to quackery."
"If the Attorney General can subpoena the records of women who have had an abortion, there is nothing to stop him from subpoenaing other medical records. This is incredibly troubling," Jean-Jacques Cabou, an attorney representing Camelback Family Planning, told Rewire.
"It’s very worrisome because it speaks to the level of anxiety in the United States," said Joyce Arthur, executive director of the Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada. "If you’re listening to the right-wing movement, anti-abortion is their top priority."
Washington state Republicans had little success advancing anti-choice and discriminatory bills during the 2016 legislative session. GOP lawmakers tried and failed to block a rule permitting people to use bathrooms based on their gender identity or gender expression.
The GOP-backed law imposed a new hurdle on abortion clinics. It allowed the director of the state Medicaid program, Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System, to exclude any facility that fails “to segregate taxpayer dollars from abortions, including the use of taxpayer dollars for any overhead expenses attributable to abortions.”
Philanthropic institutions that are supposed to serve the greater good in their geographic region are essentially acting as tax-exempt conduits for private donors to bankroll organizations that undermine women’s health, some of which have been shown to flout city and state laws. And the foundations don’t regard this as a problem.
"We’re basically saying we’ve measured it a lot of different ways, and it exists, and it’s real, and unfortunately it has not gone away," said Elise Gould, an economist with the Economic Policy Institute and a co-author of the report.
New research upends a widely held belief in the anti-choice movement that women feel conflicted about abortion care and need state-assisted intervention, including forced waiting periods and mandatory counseling.
Asked how they'd treat a hypothetical patient, Republican doctors were more likely to discourage the patient from having an abortion. Republican physicians were also more likely to discuss mental health in relation to abortion care.
The analysis by the National Partnership for Women & Families singles out a dozen states lacking even a single workplace protection for new parents–beyond what's required by federal law. These states also severely curb abortion-care access in health insurance.
Pennsylvania shifts money from the state General Fund and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families to anti-choice outfits, including Real Alternatives, which then passes the money onto fake clinics and the like.
New research on a similar law in Ohio, which also forced doctors to follow outdated FDA labeling, showed that patients experienced twice as many side effects and were three times as likely to need additional treatment to end their pregnancies.
"We know patients forgo paying rent and their bills," Nancy R. Starner, director of development and communications with Preterm, said of the struggle to pay for abortion care in the absence of Medicaid coverage."We know patients who pawn or sell their possessions, or take odd jobs—just to pay for the health care that should be their right."
As the authors of a new study on medication abortion write,"There is no evidence that the change in law led to improved abortion outcomes. Indeed, our findings suggest the opposite." Ushma Upadhyay, lead author of the paper, said: "Abortion is a procedure that is so safe that it's hard to substantiate needing a law to make it safer."
“Lawmakers should recognize that Arizona women deserve high-quality medical care—not political ideology masquerading as medicine," said Andrew Beck, staff attorney at the ACLU’s Reproductive Freedom Project.
"Why did we take those steps? Because every day is a day where some number of women could potentially be misinformed about [their] reproductive options," Feuer said. "And therefore every day is a day that a woman's health could be jeopardized."
The plaintiffs' lawyer explained that the researchers, who remain anonymous in the complaint, “are very fearful that they may be subjected to the same type of harassment and violence” that abortion clinic employees have faced.
The state health department doesn't screen the providers, which "gives the false impression that this is a vetted list …when it’s actually not," as Hannah Brass Greer, Idaho legislative director of Planned Parenthood Votes Northwest and Hawaii, told Rewire.
The American Psychological Association has warned of risks from the so-called treatment, including depression, anxiety, self hatred, and self-destructive behavior. Major medical organizations have rejected the harmful practice.
By requiring sexual education instructors to be certified teachers, the Alaska legislature is targeting Planned Parenthood, which is the largest nonprofit provider of such educational services in the state.
The notices of violation issued this month mark the first time authorities anywhere in the state are enforcing the seven-month-old Reproductive Freedom, Accountability, Comprehensive Care, and Transparency (FACT) Act.
The Republican-backed law specifically targets abortion providers, excluding any facility from Medicaid that fails "to segregate taxpayer dollars from abortions, including the use of taxpayer dollars for any overhead expenses attributable to abortions.”
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