In Our Own Voice Blog

Black Women Denounce Killing of Charleena Lyles by Seattle police

Statement of In Our Own Voice Founder and Executive Director Marcela Howell WASHINGTON, D.C. — On Sunday, June 18, 2017, Charleena Lyles was shot dead, in her own home, by two white, Seattle police officers, who responded to her report of a burglary. Lyles was a 30-year-old Black woman. Her four children were in the […]

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Black women call for more action to stop the attack on voting rights.

For Immediate Release May 15, 2017 Contact: Amy Lebowitz, Camino PR amy@caminopr.com / 212-255-2575 Statement from In Our Own Voice WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, the U.S. Supreme Court let stand the decision of lower court in the North Carolina voting rights case, which ruled that the 2013 voting law discriminated against African Americans “with almost […]

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Black women denounce new Voting Commission

For Immediate Release May 12, 2017 Contact: Loretta Kane (917-410-7242 or loretta@caminopr.com) Statement from In Our Own Voice   WASHINGTON, D.C. — Yesterday, the White House announced the creation of a commission to investigate voter fraud, spurred by Trump’s unfounded claims of voting irregularities during the 2016 elections. Marcela Howell, Founder and Executive Director of […]

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Reproductive Justice Advocates Urge Senate Judiciary Panel to Block Confirmation of U.S. Supreme Court Nominee Neil Gorsuch

For Immediate Release: March 15, 2017 For Interviews Contact: michelle@blackrj.org Washington, D.C. — In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda, the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health (NLIRH), and National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum (NAPAWF), along with 43 reproductive justice organizations, sent a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee urging them […]

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Resisting Hate Is An American Value

Marcela Howell, Executive Director, In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda Next week, two things will happen. On January 16, we will celebrate the birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr. and his vision of equality and activism. Then four days later, on January 20, we will see Donald J. Trump become the […]

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The Reintroduction of the EACH Woman Act, A Show of Strength and Unity

For Immediate Release: January 31, 2017 Contact: michelle@blackrj.org Washington, D.C.–Today In Our Own Voice applauds the leadership and commitment of Representatives Barbara Lee (D-CA) and Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), along with 102 other members of Congress, for reintroducing the Equal Access to Abortion Coverage in Health Insurance (EACH Woman) Act. With the reintroduction they have made […]

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Step Forward: Opening the Dialogue on Sexual Violence and Black Girls

By Nourbese Flint In a classroom at Gardena High School, just outside of Los Angeles, a group of young Black women and women of color stand in a row and listen to a prompt: “If you don’t think young men respect you, step forward.” Each of the young women takes a step. “If you’ve ever […]

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Black Women and Abortion — New Data Tells an Old Story

A new analysis from the Guttmacher Institute shows that more than half of women denied coverage for abortion under the Hyde Amendment are women of color. Other recent data show that while black women comprise only 14.9 percent of women of reproductive age, we make up 27.6 percent of abortion patients. The reasons for these disparities are complex, […]

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Hyde Amendment is bad policy (and unpopular too!)

In statements quoted in Anti-abortion group pressuring Kaine, Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the Susan B. Anthony List, perpetuates harmful myths about the Hyde Amendment, an annual budget policy rider that denies insurance coverage for abortion to women who receive their health care coverage from the government. It’s time to get the facts straight. The reality is, […]

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Women Win: U.S. Supreme Court Decision in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt

June 27 2016 Today the U.S. Supreme Court affirmed a woman’s constitutional right to make her own decisions about her health, family and future— no matter where she lives. By striking down the Texas law, HB2, the Court kept current clinics open in Texas, and set a precedent so that more clinics can open or reopen […]

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Congressional Caucus on Black Women and Girls Testimony on Reproductive Justice

April 28, 2016 I want to thank Representatives Bonnie Watson-Coleman, Robin Kelly and Yvette Clarke and the Congressional Caucus on Black Women and Girls. My name is Marcela Howell and I am the founder and executive director for In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda In Our Own Voice was created in […]

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Written Testimony from Black Women Reproductive Justice Organizations

House Judicial Subcommittee on Constitution and Civil Justice Hearing on H.R. 4924 Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act (PRENDA) of 2016 Written Testimony from Black Women Reproductive Justice Organizations April 14, 2016 We write to you in one voice on behalf of Reproductive Justice for Black women, immigrant women, young women and low-income women. We, the undersigned organizations, […]

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In Our Own Voice on Celebrating the 43rd Anniversary of Roe v. Wade

Statement by Marcela Howell, Founder and Executive Director “As President Obama concluded his last State of the Union, his message to the American people was clear, if a little unconventional. He set low expectation of working with the conservative-controlled Congress in his remaining months. However, he set high expectation for the American people. He issued […]

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Clinic Violence is a Reproductive Justice Issue

January 21, 2016—Based on data recently released by the Feminist Majority Foundation, “harassment, intimidation, and threats against abortion providers have nearly doubled, with the percentage of clinics impacted increasing from 26.6% in 2010 to 51.9% in 2014.” In Our Own Voice joined Congresswoman Donna Edwards (D-MD) and several other state and national advocates at the […]

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Black Women’s Organizations File U.S. Supreme Court Brief in Support of Abortion Rights in Texas

PRESS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Michelle Batchelor, 202-749-8366, michelle@blackrj.org (January 5, 2016) Twelve Black women’s Reproductive Justice organizations, led by In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda, filed an amicus brief in the U.S. Supreme Court case Whole Woman’s Health, et al., v. Kirk Cole, Commissioner of the Texas Department of […]

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Let’s Help Children of Color Breathe Easier

By Janette Robinson Flint, executive director of Black Women for Wellness Cross-posted in LA Sentinel, November 20, 2015 When breathing is easy, we can think, create, and live fuller lives. But for many communities in Los Angeles, breathing is easier said than done. There are days where I look out the window, and can’t see […]

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U.S. Supreme Court to Review Texas Law to Shut Down Clinics

PRESS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Marcela Howell, 202-841-3292, marcela@blackrj.org (November 13, 2015) – The U.S. Supreme Court, today, agreed to review a Texas law designed to shut down clinics that provide safe, legal abortion services. The case, Whole Woman’s Health v. Cole, was brought by Center for Reproductive Rights on behalf of a coalition […]

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Black Women, Always at the Forefront of Change

In 2012, a higher percentage of Black women voted than any other group. We played a pivotal role in President Obama’s re-election, and we are responsible for the margin of victory for many successful candidates and in the defeat of anti-abortion initiatives. Yet it took nearly seven years in office for President Obama to finally […]

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Black Reproductive Justice Activists Convene for a National Strategy Summit in Washington, DC

In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda convened more than 40 Black women Reproductive Justice leaders from around the country for the first annual Strategic Communications for Policy Change Summit in Washington, DC, September 25-29, 2015. Summit participants engaged in intense discussion, education and strategic planning for five days; resulting in a […]

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Black Reproductive Justice Activists Convene for a National Strategy Summit

Black Reproductive Justice Activists Convene for a National Strategy Summit in Washington, DC (Washington, DC) – More than 40 Black women Reproductive Justice activists will gather in Washington, DC at the fhi360 Conference Center, 1825 Connecticut Avenue NW from September 25-29 for five days of strategic planning as part of the first Annual Strategic Communications […]

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Abortion Access and Contraceptive Equity: A Matter of Reproductive Health, Rights, and Justice

by Dr. Krystal Redman, SPARK Executive Director August 17, 2015 As we work progressively in the fight towards social and economic equality, we must continue to include the argument of; sexual and reproductive justice in order to takes steps towards achieving complete contraceptive equity, which includes access to safe and affordable abortion services. Contraceptive Equity […]

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Black Women Matter More than Just Our Deaths

by Janette Robinson Flint I am deeply hurt, enraged and gravely concerned by the onslaught of violence against Black women and girls. The latest offense happened on Monday, July 13, when Sandra Bland, a 28 year-old woman who was pulled over for a minor traffic violation, was found dead in her Texas jail cell. The […]

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National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda Applauds the Introduction of the EACH Woman Act

In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda thanks Representatives Barbara Lee (D-CA), Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), Diana DeGette (D-CO) and Louise Slaughter (D-NY), and more than 60 Members of Congress for taking leadership by introducing the Equal Access to Abortion Coverage in Health Insurance (EACH Woman) Act. This bill ensures health coverage for […]

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The Irony of Choice as Roe turns 42

Here we go again. This week, on the 42nd anniversary of Roe v Wade, U.S. House Republican leadership will send a bill to the floor for vote that is meant to restrict a woman’s right to safe, legal abortion care. HR. 7 flies in the face of the reality that federal insurance coverage of abortion […]

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Michael Brown Could Be My Son

I woke up on Thanksgiving morning angry—very, very angry. Thanksgiving day is supposed to be a time to gather with family members, hug our children and laugh with our siblings. It is supposed to be a time to give thanks for all our blessings.

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Vote Like Your Health Depends On It

The 2014 midterm elections are tomorrow. Either through early voting, absentee ballots or at polling places on November 4, citizens across the country will cast votes for candidates who will have the state, local or federal constitutional power to make policies that could affect all of our lives. Interestingly, this election cycle has a record […]

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