Legislative Update #10 – Medicaid, Abortion Pill Forced Lies, ERA

Republican resistance to expanding Medicaid is buckling.  Four Republican House members, including three House Health Committee Chairmen, have sponsored a bill (HB62) that would significantly expand Medicaid coverage to include low-income adults.  The bill would create a program called Carolina Cares and would be paid for by a new tax on hospitals.  It is modeled on Indiana’s program approved by then-Governor Mike Pence and includes a premium and a work requirement.  Because it does not conform to Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act, it would require a federal waiver to be implemented.  This bill marks the first time prominent North Carolina Republicans have supported any expansion to the Medicaid program to include people not already covered.  For more details, see:  http://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/state-politics/article143388024.html

Abortion is back in the General Assembly.  Two new bills—one good and one very bad—have been filed.

Read about the Medicaid bill, the abortion bills, ERA updates, Lawsuit updates, Voter ID/Voter Suppression Law updates and bill tracking in North_Carolina_NOW_Legislative_Update_#10.9Apr17.

What do you know about “Equal Pay Day”?

Equal Pay Day is the day in any given year when women working full-time, year-round catch up to men’s earnings from the previous year. April 4th is Equal Pay Day for 2017, because women on average make 80% of what men make. However, the reality is that the wage gap is even greater for most women of color. ” African-American women’s wages won’t catch up to men’s 2016 earnings until July 31, Native American women until September 25, and Latina women until November 2, according to the ACLU in “Working Women, Your Paycheck Has Been Trapped in a Time Warp,4/4/17. Mom’s are penalized too – Equal Pay Day for moms arrives in late May this year. Even celebrating Equal Pay Day on Tuesday is significant. Tuesday was selected to represent how far into the next work week women must work to earn what men earned the previous week! More here about myths on women’s pay, and what can be done to make pay more fair. 

In “Shortchanged: Gender and race discrimination in the workplace, and how to fix it,” 4/3/17, NC Policy Watch Blog, Women’s March On Raleigh organizer Shana Becker wrote, 

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Take Action: Move NC Adopt ERA Bills Along!

North Carolina has an important role to play in adding the ERA to our US Constitution and our responsibility is to demand its passage!

Senate Bill 85 and House Bill 102, “NC Adopt Equal Rights Amendment,” are stuck in their Rules Committees. They must be heard AND passed along for a full vote in the House and Senate. Call today!

House Rules Committee Chair, David Lewis – 919-715-3015 – insist that he give HB102: NC Adopt Equal Rights Amendment a hearing and vote to approve the bill. (Click on the link to see the title, history, text, sponsors and co-sponsors of the bill.)

Senate Rules Committee Chair, Bill Rabon – 919-733-5963 – insist that he give SB85: NC Adopt Equal Rights Amendment a hearing and vote to approve the bill.

ERA Bill Sponsors pictured with women’s group leads – Pat Sledge (BPW-NC), Gailya Paliga (NC NOW), Audrey Muck (ERA-NC Alliance/NOW), Sen. Floyd McKissick (SB85 Sponsor), Virginia Adamson (BPW-NC), Rep. Carla Cunningham (HB102 Sponsor), Joyce Mitchell (DWNC). Photo Credit: Sen. McKissick

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Alfonso: I came out feeling empowered..

I learned so much from a man I knew so little about, that man’s name was Gene R. Nichol. I went not knowing what to expect, I came out feeling empowered knowing that there’s someone out there who cares. For 2 hours it felt as if I was constantly being punched in the back by Mike Tyson, and kicked by Bruce Lee.

Professor Gene Nichol, Alfonso Cristobal, and Gailya Paliga Photo Credit: Alfonso Cristobal

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What’s up with ERA, HB2? Find out in 9th Legislative Update.

ERA YES!

Nevada has ratified the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA)! The re-introduction of the ERA for ratification in various state legislatures (including North Carolina) is part of the “three-state strategy” for ratification (although now [after Nevada] it has become a two-state strategy). 

This has brought new interest to ratifying ERA across the nation. North Carolina already had introduced bills to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment both Houses of the North Carolina legislature, and NC NOW is working to spur action on these bills.

The ERA NC Alliance, which includes NC NOW, held a Women’s Mobilization Monday on Monday, March 27, to advocate for ratification of the ERA. Events included a press conference at 3:00 pm in the General Assembly Press Room and supporters assembling in the House gallery at 6:30 pm where they were recognized. There must have been 70 women present at 7pm. There was lots of press at the Press Conference at 3pm.

 NC NOW subset of Women Mobilization Monday
Photo Credit: Roberta Waddle

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NOW Well-Represented at VFA Sharing Our Stories Event

NC NOW was well represented at the Veteran Feminists of America “Sharing Our Stories” event on 3/31/17.  NC NOW members from Raleigh, Durham, Charlotte, Fayetteville and the Triad area were honored. NOW was mentioned repeatedly by activists as where they learned the skills that helped them for the rest of their lives. The scholars and the historians talked about their research and discussed topics right along with the activists. It would be great to get some of their books for NC NOW’s office library.

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Sharing Our Stories Day Long Event in Durham on 3/31/17

Please join NOW members and leaders at Veteran Feminist of America’s  “Sharing Our Stories” event in Durham on 3/31/17. This event had been previously posted on 2/2/17 in the set with upcoming February/March events on 2/2/17

“Historians and Feminists: An Intergenerational Conversation” will begin at 9:30 am with a keynote address by Dr. Nancy MacLean. That will be followed by three panel discussions between Second Wave activists and young historians who are studying the women’s movement. Find out more at http://www.sharingourstories2017.org/. If you want to attend but don’t have a ticket, I would suggest you go to the event and see if they have room.

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