Florida lawmakers wants to make this week ‘Reproductive Rights Awareness Week’

Posted on: January 23rd, 2012 by The American Independent 5 Comments

Florida state Rep. Lori Berman, D-Delray Beach (source: myfloridahouse.gov/Meredith Geddings)

Florida state Rep. Lori Berman, D-Delray Beach, wants to christen this week “Reproductive Rights Awareness Week.”

Berman’s resolution would designate this week, the 39th anniversary of the landmark decision in Roe v. Wade, as a week to “create a collaborative and cohesive force on the issue” of reproductive rights around the country.

According to a press release today:

Representative Lori Berman joined with fellow legislators throughout the United States in support of a resolution designating January 22-28, 2012 as “Reproductive Rights Awareness Week.”

“I am proud to work with Senator [Eleanor] Sobel, who has filed the Reproductive Rights Awareness Week resolution in the Senate, SB 2042. This resolution states important facts about women’s healthcare by designating a week to recognize the importance of women’s reproductive rights,” said Representative Berman. “It is imperative that we as a legislative body continue to hold open discussions on matters of reproductive health.”

The resolution follows an event hosted by the Center for Women Policy Studies in D.C. last summer that Berman attended. About 20 female legislators were invited to discuss their experiences from the then-recent legislative session, in an effort to “coordinate a national agenda to promote and protect reproductive rights and health policy in 2012.” Berman was the only Floridian to be invited to join the event.

Berman has long been a proponent of women’s health and reproductive rights in the state Legislature. Last year, Berman introduced an amendment to the mandatory-ultrasound bill requiring the state to “reimburse the woman the cost of the ultrasound.” The amendment did not pass. Berman spoke out in opposition to that bill throughout its passage.

This session, Berman has introduced legislation that would require pregnancy resource centers, known as crisis pregnancy centers or CPCs, to protect the private medical information of women who visit them. CPCs have received a lot of criticism from reproductive rights advocates because they are religious-based centers that try to dissuade women from having abortions. Some Florida centers have even been found to distribute inaccurate information about abortion to women seeking help in the centers.

Last year several anti-abortion rights bills were signed into law. Already this year three abortion bills are set to be heard in the Legislature.

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