Local NOW Chapter Discusses March PlansThe Charlottesville chapter of the National Organization for Women plans to attend the March for Women's Lives in Washington, D.C., in support of women's right to have an abortion. The organization also plans to lobby Congress to oppose the anti-abortion rider on the Civil Rights Restoration Act.
Local NOW Chapter Discusses March Plans
By EDWARD JOHNS
Cavalier Daily Staff Writer
The Charlottesville chapter of The National Organization for Women met yesterday to plan their trip to Washington on March 9 for the National March for Women's Lives.
The main focus of the march and subsequent rally will be to guarantee women the personal right to decide whether or not to have an abortion, Charlottesville NOW Chapter President Kobby Hoffman said.
The local group hopes to take one or two, buses of people, including University students, from Charlottesville to the march, Hoffman said. The chapter has about 200 members, she added.
The day after the march, the Organization will lobby Congress to defeat the anti-abortion rider on the Civil Rights Restoration Act, Hoffman said. The bill, which is still in committee, includes an amendment asserting that the choice of an abortion is not a woman's civil right. Without the amendment, the law would remain neutral in respect to abortion.
Chapter Vice President Joan Taylor said the Roman Catholic Church supports the amendment because it fears that if the government considers abortion a civil right, Catholic hospitals would be forced to perform abortions, thus violating their First Amendment right to freedom of religion.
Besides discussing the lobbying effort, Hoffman defined some of the chapterâ€™s goals. The chapterâ€™s primary goal is the passage and ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment, Hoffman said.
She also cited the organization's support for eliminating racism, changing society's image of women, and improving the economic status of single women and their children.
The group also opposes discrimination on the basis of sexual preference. Hoffman cited what she considered absurd state laws that need to be abolished, such as a law preventing homosexuals from purchasing liquor.
The local chapter has been instrumental in rape prevention in the Charlottesville vicinity, Hoffman cited rape as a major problem in the area, adding that until recently there was "almost a rape a week around here."
Since a task force on rape was established between city, county, and University authorities, the number of sexual assaults has dropped.
Hoffman said the local chapter supports the bill, recently passed by the House of Delegates, making marital rape illegal and expects it to become law soon.
In other comments, Hoffman and Taylor criticized President Reagan's anti-abortion stance and social program cuts. Taylor said Reagan is only "concerned about the fetus up until the moment of birth.â€
Hoffman stressed that an abortion decision is rarely an easy decision for a pregnant woman,
She cited a 1985 Harris poll that found a majority of Americans believe women have the right to an abortion in certain circumstances. It also found less than ten percent of those polled favor a constitutional amendment banning abortion.
|Tags||advocacy, protests and demonstrations, student publications|
|Date Added||January 23, 2017|
|Date Modifed||December 9, 2017|
|Collection||Cavalier Daily: articles about gender discrimination|
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