Charlotte NOW President Melba Smith Evans had the opportunity to attend a cocktail reception in support of ratifying the ERA in NC. This event was hosted by Winston & Strawn, LLC, at their office in Charlotte, on 7/12/18. The program included a panel discussion featuring ERA bill sponsors and a lawyer from the law firm. The panel addressed the status of ratification efforts in North Carolina, the practical and legal implications of the ERA, and how individuals can become involved. ERA-NC members and member organizations of the ERA-NC Alliance were invited (like NC NOW, BPW-NC, and more).
Women and men are excited about ratifying the ERA in NC! Photo Credit: Melba Evans
The ERA was ratified by Nevada last year (3/21/17) and by Illinois this year (5/30/18) and following the three-state strategy, we now need only one more state to ratify the ERA.
This is the beginning of NC NOW’s 6th legislative update for the 2018 Short Session. The whole update includes summaries on constitutional amendments, further restrictions on early voting, and judicial redistricting, as well as ERA actions and bill tracking. The legislative updates are written by NC NOW VP of Legislation, Robin Davis.
As many as four proposed amendments to the North Carolina constitution could be on the ballot this fall. All of the proposed amendments are designed to appeal to the Republican base in hopes that they will increase conservative voter turnout. For an overview, see: http://www.ncpolicywatch.com/2018/06/22/round-up-ncga-discusses-four-constitutional-amendments-hunting-and-fishing-voter-id-victims-rights-legislative-appointment-of-judges/
Attorney Aylett Colston organized an event at Bicentennial Mall in Raleigh at which people spoke out against voter id and voter suppression. Photo Credit: Phil Fonville
VOTER ID/STATE CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT
Posted in constitutional amendment, Equal Rights Amendment, ERA, Judicial takeover, ncga interference, voter suppression, voting
Tagged constitutional amendment, Equal Rights Amendment, ERA, Judicial takeover, ncga interference, voter suppression, voting
Take Action to Ratify ERA in NC, with the ERA NC Alliance, of which NC NOW is a lead member. Join us in person in this action, and you can also call or email from home.
One more state. Not one more generation. We urge you to participate in ERA-NC Advocacy Day on Wednesday, June 27th at the NCGA in Raleigh. This CALL TO ACTION comes on the heels of Illinois becoming the 37th state to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) on 5/30/18. Only one more state ratification is needed to amend the US Constitution. NC is now the face of the national conversation. Our state is poised to make history, becoming the 38th and final state needed to push the passage of the amendment over the top.
NC NOW Women at NCGA on 3/27/17, Photo Credit: Roberta Waddle
It’s been another crazy week in the NCGA. Here are some highlights (lowlights) from the North_Carolina_NOW_Legislative_Update_#4_Short_Session, 10_June_2018.
As expected, Governor Cooper vetoed the budget, citing inadequate funding for education and teacher pay raises, implementing unnecessary tax cuts, and the deplorable process used to pass the budget. See “Cooper vetoes budget bill — here’s why,” NC Policy Watch, 6/6/18. The Senate has voted to override the Governor’s veto and the House has voted once to override with a final vote scheduled for 06/12/2018.
NC NOW members delivered the pro-choice signature ad packets to all of our representatives in the NC House and NC Senate on Monday, 6/4/18. The packets included a copy of the pro-choice signature ad that we ran in Indy Week in January (as we do every year), and a letter from NC NOW.
NC NOW Members Deliver Pro-Choice Signature Ad Packets on Jun 4, 2018. Photo Credit: Gailya Paliga
This year the letter was somewhat focused on the terrible budget process which blocked input from all Democratic lawmakers and maybe some Republican ones as well. The letter also talked about inappropriate uses of taxpayer money in the budget. See the letter below.
Posted in abortion, CPC, do your job, NC budget, ncga interference, Rape, rape kits, signature ad, state budget issues, women
Tagged abortion, crisis pregnancy centers, NC budget, ncga interference, pro-choice, rape kits, signature ad
Information and Actions to take!
The NCGA is giving taxpayer money away to Crisis Pregnancy Centers (CPC). They gave $1.3 million away in the 2017 budget, and have increased the amount in the 2018 budget. The money is going to 3 CPC umbrella organizations! These clinics are not health clinics, and they are often tied up in religion. Actions to take are at the end.
The 2017 NC state budget gave away $1.3 million to a Crisis Pregnancy Center (CPC) parent organization, Carolina Pregnancy Care Fellowship, an anti-abortion group that operates 8 clinics in North Carolina. The NC legislature gave away this money with no strings attached and no milestones or controls on services provided. The legislative majority had planned to give $1.3 million away to CPCs two years in a row.
Destigmatize Abortion, NoGagRule Rally on 4/10/18 Photo Credit: Karen Ziegler
In 2018, the Republicans who wrote the state budget behind closed doors raised that amount – they are now giving away $1.55 million, and they’ve made some changes to the taxpayer money recipients. This money isn’t going to health care for low income women, it isn’t expanding Medicaid to help low income women and men. Taxpayer money is being delivered to three CPC parent organizations, as follows.
- $1 million to the Carolina Pregnancy Care Fellowship (same one that benefited last budget)
- $300,000 to “The Human Coalition” which describes itself explicitly as opposing the “abortion industry.”
- $250,000 is going to a third anti-abortion pregnancy clinic, Mountain Area Pregnancy Services in Asheville.
Posted in abortion, CPC, do your job, health care, NC budget, ncga interference, state budget issues, women
Tagged CPC, crisis pregnancy centers, fake clinics, poor women, state budget issues, women
NC NOW Legislative Update #1 – 11 Feb 2018
It is difficult to report on legislative matters because so many of the most important developments take place behind in secret and are never documented. As an article in NC Policy Watch summarizes:
“Whether it’s cutting off debate on legislation, holding surprise, late night sessions, regularly ignoring the committee process, burying new and controversial laws that were never previously discussed in omnibus budget bills that cannot be amended, holding an endless series of “special” legislative sessions, refusing to record and archive all sorts of important proceedings, or even directly and blatantly punishing lawmakers who dare to speak up during debate, Republicans have evidenced little shame. Much as has been the case with gerrymandering, legislative leaders have not so much invented new tactics and tricks as they have cynically perfected and expanded the use of old ones.”
This unhealthy pattern continues.
This week the General Assembly reconvened, and legislators lost no time ramming through complex, multi-issue legislation with almost no discussion. House Bill 90 was voted out of the Appropriations Committee and passed the Senate on the same day. This omnibus bill offers a fix for the unfunded class size mandate, takes away the governor’s control of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline mitigation fund, and reorganizes the State Board of Elections (for the third time)–three unrelated issues in a single bill.
View of 2018 HKonJ rally from stage. Photo Credit: Phil Fonville
The Problems with House Bill 90
We attended another ‘Tuesdays with Tillis’ protest at the Federal Building in Raleigh on Tuesday, 8/22/17. At least 45 people were there. People have been protesting there every week since the inauguration in January. The size of the group varies, but 7 months later – these weekly protests are going strong.
It was fascinating to hear that the building security guards think we, this weekly group of protesters, hate the government. Somehow they don’t understand that we want and expect Senator Tillis to talk to us, talk to all of his constituents. This is his job. One of the ladies went before the protest to use the bathroom in there and that is what she found out in conversation with a guard.
How do they get such a wrong message? They may hear some of our speeches, but certainly they can see the signs. Our signs are not anti-government signs. Calling out Senator Tillis, some of them. But not anti-government. And most are on issues we want to discuss with him. Or telling him to do his job. These protests focus on a different issue every week.
Fight back outrageous attacks on Secretary of State, Elaine Marshall. It’s more than intimidation – it’s a witch hunt. NC’s House of Representatives has done some terrible things since 2011, but this is a new level. On June 28th, up pops a new bill – House Bill 925 – Creation of House Select Investigatory Committee, introduced by Rep. Chris Millis. Millis and the House leadership are trying to impeach an outstanding public servant on unsubstantiated charges. As PoliticsNC wrote, “The House Rules Committee voted to begin an investigation into allegations that Marshall illegally commissioned notaries of public who are not citizens. It’s nothing more than political bluster that was debunked during her re-election campaign last year. No state or federal law enforcement agency has suggested any wrong-doing on Marshall’s part.”
NC Secretary of State Elaine Marshall Photo Credit: elainemarshall.com