New Hampshire’s fetal personhood bill is expected to become the latest example of what those who have been following New Hampshire’s reproductive rights policies already know: Governor Sununu consistently steps on women’s bodies to rise in his own political career.
“A lot of people think that the United States is the best place in the world to have a baby, and that’s just not true. It’s the most dangerous place in the developed world to have a baby.” This statement by artist and birth justice advocate Michelle Hartney may sound like an exaggeration, but it’s hard to argue with the statistics. Hartney is part of a growing movement fighting for women’s right to choose when it comes to their maternal health care.
Thank you to All Above All for highlighting my op-ed on repealing the Hyde Amendment in their “Acts of Boldness” campaign! It’s such an honor to featured alongside so many of my heroes in the fight for reproductive justice and gender equality.
As Sexual Assault Awareness Month approaches, I hope we’re all about to learn more about how to prevent sexual assault and get better as a society at supporting survivors. In that spirit, I wrote about the “freeze” response in my most recent op-ed for Seacoast Sunday (Fosters Daily Democrat/The Portsmouth Herald), Freezing: A Common Response to Sexual Assault.
You’re probably familiar with the brain’s two most well-known trauma responses: “fight” and “flight.” But there’s a third reaction to trauma that often goes unmentioned, although it’s an overwhelmingly common response, especially in cases of sexual assault and rape: the “freeze” response.
Would you be surprised to learn that over 90 percent of survivors of sexual assault respond by freezing? I heard this statistic at a recent Neoteric Dance Collaborative event at The Music Hall called One Billion Rising. The event, part of a global movement to end violence against women, was a fundraiser for Haven, a local organization focused on preventing sexual abuse and providing support for those impacted by domestic and sexual violence. During the show, ballet dancer Lissa Curtis shared her story of freezing in response to a sexual assault, and said “this happens with more than 90 percent of women.”
In the inaugural article of my new column for Seacoast Sunday (The Portsmouth Herald/Fosters Daily Democrat), I wrote about the discriminatory nature of the Hyde Amendment, which unfairly targets poor women by restricting access to their legal right to have a safe abortion. It’s a matter of inequality.
Last week, the New Hampshire House voted on 10 laws that impact women’s health and access to safe and legal reproductive health care. Earlier this month, the Supreme Court heard arguments on the most significant abortion-related case of the past two decades, in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt. And in the past year, candidates vying for the highest office in the country have weighed in with their thoughts on women’s health in general and abortion in particular.
So, this begs the question: when equal access to reproductive health care is being discussed, who gets to frame the conversation?
As an uninsured young adult working three jobs, Planned Parenthood was my only option for access to birth control and well-woman exams. Since they were there for me to provide much-needed sex education, information on and access to birth control and compassionate, professional health care, I’ve become outspoken about reproductive justice and the fact that I #StandWithPP.
Once the attacks on Planned Parenthood were proven to be a coordinated smear campaign, I joined Senator Shaheen from New Hampshire, along with Senators Patty Murray and Richard Blumenthal, along with Representatives Diana DeGette, and Jan Schakowsky, to call for an end to the efforts to take away access to necessary health care services.