Black Women Launch Fifth Annual Reproductive Justice Week of Action

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE August 26, 2019 Contact: Loretta Kane (917-410-7242 or loretta@camninopr.com) WASHINGTON — In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda (In Our Own Voice) will hold the fifth annual Reproductive Justice (RJ) Week of Action, in celebration of 25 years of Reproductive Justice. Every August, In Our Own Voice works with its eight partner organizations — Black Women for Wellness, Black Women’s Health Imperative, New Voices for Reproductive Justice, SisterLove, Inc., SisterReach, SPARK Reproductive Justice NOW, The Afiya Center and Women With a Vision, Inc. — to amplify their collective voices around policy and culture change issues that are critical to the health and well-being of Black women and girls. “We don’t lead single-issue lives; so when we experience oppression, the consequences ripple across every aspect of our being,” said Marcela Howell, founder, president and CEO of In Our Own Voice. “Reproductive justice is about addressing oppression at the intersections of issues, taking a holistic approach to dismantling injustices.” This year, the RJ Week of Action will take place from Monday, August 26 through Sunday, September 1 and the theme is “Living Our Power.” Besides meeting with congressional representatives to discuss federal issues, the organizations will also conduct community events designed to educate the public about critical policy issues. Here are some of the highlights: SPARK Reproductive Justice NOW (Atlanta) WHEN: August 26, 2019 WHAT: Op-Ed Training: Community and base members will hold an op-ed training where participants leave with a draft in-hand about how voter suppression efforts impact Black people and other people of color. Contact: Dr. Krystal Redman (krystal@sparkrj.org) Black Women for Wellness (California) WHEN: August 26, 2019 WHAT: Reproductive Justice Conference: An annual conference, this year’s theme, “400 Years - Reflections on Lessons Learned and Vision for the Future,” will reflect on the 400 year anniversary of the arrival of enslaved Africans in the United States. The conference will explore our health status then and the history of our health access, care and treatment to identify lessons and strategies to imagine a future that changes the trajectory of our reproductive and overall health. Contact: Jannette Robinson Flint (janette@bwwla.com) Women With A Vision (Louisiana) WHEN: August 26, 2019  WHAT: Spanish Language Contraception Reader Release: In recognition of the need for information about contraception and birth control that is centered on the communities served, Women With a Vision will release an online, bilingual English and Spanish Contraception Reader, written in gender-neutral language and centered around helping people access contraception based on their priorities. Contact: Lakeesha Harris (lhwwav@gmail.com) Black Women’s Health Imperative (Atlanta) WHEN: August 29, 2019 WHAT: Rights, Respect, Resiliency: Healthy Relationships, Healthy You!: As high school/college students head back to school, the Black Women's Health Imperative will convene reproductive justice advocates, college and high school students, mentors and community leaders for an insightful, action-based “Real Talk! Real Women” discussion on developing healthy self-respect and healthy relationships as Black women and girls in Atlanta.  Media Contact: Monica Coleman (mcoleman@bwhi.org) SisterLove (Atlanta; event held in Savannah, GA) WHEN: August 29, 2019 WHAT: RJ Week of Action Artivism Power: A networking hour at the Healthy Love Youth Statewide Summit (HLYASS) with artists and activists to discuss their work and the power of art to shift culture and conversations. Come mix and mingle with changemakers and learn how to initiate important dialogue on Reproductive Justice issues impacting our communities.  Contact: Sybil Miller (smiller@sisterlove.org) SisterReach (Tennessee) WHEN: August 29, 2019 WHAT: Woman 2 Woman Event: A community dinner and discussion about abortion restrictions and how Black women can protect themselves with birth control and more. Contact: margaret@sisterreach.org Afiya Center (Texas) WHEN: August 29, 2019, 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. WHAT: Community Conversation on Black Women + ACA: This public event will provide an opportunity to discuss how the various faces of Black women will be impacted by the current administration’s reimagining of the Affordable Care Act. Also known as Obamacare, participants will discuss how the administration's changes impact lesbian and nonbinary folks, HIV+ Black women, Transwomen and others.  Contact Rev. Deneen Robinson (drobinson@theafiyacenter.org or 214-563-8471) New Voices for Reproductive Justice (Pennsylvania and Ohio) Philadelphia Event WHEN: August 29th, 2019, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. WHAT: New Voices — Philadelphia will host a Listening Party in Honor of "Ms. Fannie Lou Hamer": An iconic civil rights activist and dedicated supporter of reproductive rights for women, this community showing will screen one of Ms. Hamer's famous speaking engagements to solicit comments and ideas for the future growth of the Reproductive Justice movement for Black women and girls. The screening invites individuals of all ages, especially those who would not have traditionally known of the past leaders of the movement, to build upon the past as a strategic road-map for the upcoming 2020 election and beyond. Cleveland Event WHEN: August 30th, 2019, 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. WHAT: New Voices — Cleveland will host a public education, community event with various breakout group activities to discuss both issues of abortion access and barriers confronted by people across different age groups and socio-economic means, as well as after-care, including womb healing and infant loss. The event serves as a platform for New Voices to begin ongoing conversations in the community about reproductive health issues for women of color. Contact: Beulah Osueke (Beulah@newvoicespittsburgh.org) ### In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda is a national reproductive justice organization focused on lifting up the voices of Black women at the national and regional levels in our ongoing policy fight to secure reproductive justice for all women and girls. Its eight strategic partners include Black Women for Wellness, Black Women’s Health Imperative, New Voices for Reproductive Justice, SisterLove, Inc. SisterReach, SPARK Reproductive Justice NOW, The Afiya Center and Women With A Vision.

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