Advocates' Blog
Advocates' Blog
They won't silence us
Wednesday, 10 July 2013 03:14

Across the country -- in Texas, Ohio, North Carolina, Wisconsin, and too many other states -- access to safe abortion care is vanishing before our eyes because of unnecessary and burdensome restrictions. How can we keep up our commitment to women’s health, even as far right politicians force more and more anti-abortion bills through state legislatures? We do it by changing the culture of shame and stigma around abortion. We do it by sharing stories and by speaking up in support of women.

Share your story with the 1 in 3 Campaign today. Whether you have a personal experience with abortion, or want to share why you support women’s access to care, you can speak out with 1 in 3.

Be a part of creating a culture of compassion, empathy, and support for access to basic health care.

Congratulations to Barbara Huberman!
Wednesday, 03 July 2013 09:42

We are delighted to announce that Advocates for Youth’s Director of Education Barbara Huberman is this year’s winner of the Healthy Teen Network’s Carol Mendez Cassell Award, to be awarded at next week's Healthy Teen Network Conference!  The award recognizes sexuality educators who demonstrate commitment to the application of research in the practice of sexuality education policy and programs.  Barbara has worked in the sexuality education field for over 50 years and trained thousands of youth serving professionals. She is the founder of Let’s Talk Month, now an international campaign each October to support parents and families in their role as sexuality educators of their children, as well as Teen Pregnancy Prevention Month each May.  Ms. Huberman has authored books on teen pregnancy prevention, building community and state councils on teen pregnancy prevention, and co-authored the widely recognized monograph “European Approaches to Adolescent Sexual Behavior and Responsibility.”  Congratulations Barbara!

An Open Letter to Senator Wendy Davis and the People’s Filibuster
Wednesday, 26 June 2013 06:49

Today, you are our heroes.

You stared down a bullying Texas legislature that had repeatedly shown it would stop at nothing to pass a sweeping abortion restriction bill that would endanger millions of women’s health and lives.

And you didn’t flinch.

Senator Davis, your filibuster was among the most courageous acts we have ever seen by a legislator. Following the rules of the Senate, you stood for over 11 hours, with no food or drink, barred even from leaning, and shared women’s real stories of their experiences with abortion – stories that had previously been ruled “too repetitive” by the legislature.

After 2 trumped-up warnings, they finally shut you down after 11 hours on false charges of going off topic.

And then the people took over.

Introducing Condomology
Monday, 24 June 2013 07:12


Whether you need info about condoms yourself or are a peer educator and/or activist looking to get the facts to a friend, Condomology is the place to start.

Condomology is a new initiative from the American Sexual Health Association aimed at ensuring that people have fact-based information in plain, understandable speak that we can all use and share. You’ll find videos, slideshows, charts and other information covering the “ins and outs” of condoms and sexual health.

Some Condomology resources:

Important Victory for HIV Prevention and Treatment ADvocates
Thursday, 20 June 2013 10:24

by Janine Kossen, Director, Public Policy

BREAKING NEWS: Today, the US Supreme Court ruled 6-2 that the Anti-Prostitution Pledge (or the Anti-Prostitution Loyalty Oath—APLO) is unconstitutional because it violates the First Amendment’s free speech clause.

As way of background, the APLO is a provision in PEPFAR’s authorizing legislation (our global HIV/AIDS program) which requires NGOs receiving PEPFAR funds to explicitly oppose prostitution and sex trafficking as a condition of receiving those funds. The Court ruled that the government cannot do this because it requires NGOs to adopt the government’s viewpoint in violation of its free speech rights. “The Policy Requirement goes beyond preventing recipients from using private funds in a way that would undermine the federal program. It requires them to pledge allegiance to the Government’s policy of eradicating prostitution.” Chief Justice Roberts wrote the majority opinion ruling the policy unconstitutional and was joined by Justices Kennedy, Ginsburg, Breyer, Alito, and Sotomayor.

Standing together for Beatriz and for each other
Monday, 17 June 2013 07:27

 On Tuesday, over 100 activists gathered together in DC\'s Dupont Circle to honor Beatriz and all women who have experienced abortion at a vigil hosted by Advocates for Youth, IpasReligious Coalition for Reproductive Choice (RCRC), and The National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health.

The vigil began with a prayer from the Rev. Harry Knox, President and CEO of RCRC.  "We are comforted in knowing that justice was finally accomplished and that the life of this blessed woman was spared. We give thanks that you see Beatriz, and other women in similar circumstances, not just in El Salvador but around the world."

Debra Hauser, President of Advocates for Youth, then shared remarks. "For months Beatriz was denied the care that could save her life.  Her story is her own but it is also ours.  We are Beatriz.  We are also the teen in Jackson, Miss., forced to obtain permission from an abusive parent who denies it; the middle-aged mother in El Paso, Tex., with so few resources she can't scrape together enough money to end her pregnancy but can't fathom how she can possibly support another child; the couple in Salt Lake City, Utah, forced to endure a barrage of falsehoods about the "side-effects" of abortion and made to wait three days in a roadside motel before being permitted to return to the clinic for the procedure; the young girl in Lancaster, PA afraid to tell her parents she is pregnant and who instead gives birth in a high school bathroom. We are 1 in 3."

Readers stepped forward to share women's real stories of abortion from the 1 in 3 Campaign.  Each story was different, and each was important to understanding wome's real experiences with abortion.

The vigil closed with remarks from Jessica Gonzales-Rojas, ED, National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health.  Jessica reminded people of the deadly cost of policies like the Hyde amendment and the El Salvador restrictions. Although anti-abortion protestors attempted to disrupt the vigil, activists stood together in solidarity for Beatriz and women like her.  We are 1 in 3!

Watch video of the vigil (program begins at minute 6:30)

Read the Huffington Post editorial by leaders of the vigil

Check out pics of the event

BREAKING: Justice Department will drop attempts to block OTC status for emergency contraception
Tuesday, 11 June 2013 06:48

UPDATE:  On June 20, the FDA announced that it has approved Plan B for sale on shelves without agre or ID requirements.  It is still not clear when the product will actually be available on shelves.


On Monday, June 10, the Justice Department announced it would no longer pursue attempts to block over-the-counter availability for Plan B One-Step and generic one-pill emergency contraceptives.  

The Justice Department invited Teva, the maker of Plan B, to submit an application for over-the-counter status, and said it would approve the application "promptly" (though we do not know when the product will actually move to pharmacy shelves).

This is a great step forward for helping young women prevent teen pregnancy.  Once emergency contraception has been cleared for over-the-counter status, young women of all ages who have experienced contraceptive failure, or been sexually assaulted, can simply buy it from drugstore shelves - without the age and ID restrictions that disproportionately affect young people of color, those who are undocumented, and those of lower socioeconomic status.  

Research has shown that young women can use Plan B safely. Advocates for Youth welcomes the Justice Department's decision to drop the case and take politics out of decisions about health and safety.

We are 1 in 3. We are Beatriz.
Thursday, 06 June 2013 13:13

We have been following closely the story of Beatriz, the El Salvadoran woman who spent two long months on the verge of death while unable to terminate a dangerous pregnancy. Her story has inspired an action in solidarity with Beatriz and all women who need abortion care.

Advocates for Youth, the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice, and The National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health will sponsor a vigil in honor of Beatriz. We will gather in Dupont Circle in Washington, DC on Tuesday, June 11 at 11:30 am for prayers and to speak out about the impact of burdensome restrictions on abortion care on women and their families.

Speakers will include ADvocates for Youth's President Deb Hauser; Rev. Harry F. Knox, President and CEO of the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice; and Jessica González-Rojas, Executive Director of National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health Activists.

Please join us at this action in support of safe, affordable abortion care for women everywhere!

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