8.1.14 - Gainesville Hobby Lobby Protest A Success!

 

 

On August 1, 2014, NWL members joined a coalition of Gainesville groups in protesting the opening of the Gainesville Hobby Lobby. 

NWL chair Kendra Vincent, pictured left, attends the Hobby Lobby Protest. (Photo by Amy Coenen)

See more photos from the Gainesville Hobby Lobby Protest here.

See press coverage of the Gainesville Hobby Lobby Protest:

8.1.14 - WCJB TV 20 - Gainesville Activists Protest Hobby Lobby

8.1.14 - The Gainesville Sun - Some 90 people join protest against Hobby Lobby

8.1.14 - The Alligator - Hobby Lobby Protest

 

Tell the FDA to Put All Forms of the Morning-After Pill Over the Counter Now

Tell the Food and Drug Administration: Side with Women and Girls, Not Drug Companies. Put All Forms of the Morning-After Pill Over the Counter. 

In June 2013, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) finally put Plan B One-Step® over the counter without any restrictions.  The FDA did this in response to the Tummino v. Hamburg federal court decision in April 2013 which was pushed forward by a decade of grassroots feminist pressure.  

The FDA’s action could have brought the U.S. in line with the scientific evidence and over 60 countries around the world that have no age restrictions on the Morning-After Pill. 

Read more...

2.17.14 - Gainesville Women’s Liberation Speaks Out on Abortion

 

BY KATIE WALTERS

(This article was originally published in the March 2014 issue of the Gainesville Iguana.)

 

When I got an email from Gainesville Women’s Liberation advertising a planning meeting around the issues of abortion and birth control, I knew I had to attend. Why is the issue of abortion and birth control access so timely? After all, there has been no report of anti-choice legislation introduced so far in the Florida legislature.

Well, first of all, our state already scores a big fat F for abortion access (prochoiceamerica.org). We have many laws that place (medically unnecessary) restrictions on both women and abortion providers. Secondly, Texas! The laws that passed in Texas certainly will be tried in other states. We need a united movement that demands no restrictions on abortion — and we need to be ready to fight and show our strength in a moments notice. I encourage readers to join NWL’s listserv to stay on top of this issue in Florida. (To get involved, call Kendra at (352) 575-0495, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .)

Read more...

10.26.13 - Morning-After Pill Brigade Actions

 

 

Photos by Laurie Wen. Left Photo:  NWL organizers stage a protest in a Rite Aid on 6th Ave near 14th Street, where Plan B One-Step is locked in                                                                  ridiculously large, locked boxes. Right Photo: At Duane Reade a non-intrusive, non-locked packaging is being used.

 

On October 26, 2013, the NWL New York Chapter took to the streets to do our own investigation of how Plan B One-Step is being sold. Whenever we saw obstacles, such as the pill locked in attention-grabbing locked boxes, or lack of over-the-counter access, we "zapped" the pharmacy: doing a street theater action right in the aisle. We raised consciousness of how the locked boxes embarrass women; suggest that women who need birth control are apt to steal it; and confuse staff.

We are happy to report that some pharmacies are utilizing a new, non-intrusive plastic enclosure. However, the way that Plan B One Step is sold varies from store to store- even within the same chain. In some stores, Plan B One Step remains behind the counter. And the price (around $50) continues to be a problem everywhere.

Help us gather more information on how the Morning-After Pill is being sold! Investigate your local pharmacy and fill out our survey.

10.22.13 - NWL Demands Pharmacies End Obstacles To Buying Plan B


We demand that the CEOs of Duane Reade, Rite Aid, Walgreens, and CVS Caremark end artificial obstacles to buying Plan B One Ste, and sell it like any other over-the-counter drug! We sent the below demand letter, and we expect a response:

Dear Pharmacy CEO:

We demand that you remove the Morning-After Pill from the large plastic locked boxes and sell it on the shelf like any other over-the-counter drug. 

For 10 years, feminists around the country fought to put the Morning-After Pill on the shelf, available to all women and men. On April 5, 2013, a federal court ordered the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to put all emergency contraception (i.e., the Morning-After Pill) over-the-counter without any restrictions. Your store is now stocking Plan B One-Step on the shelf because of this court order and you are supposed to sell it to everyone regardless of age and without proof of ID.

 

Read more...

10.21.13 - NYC Meeting to Prep for Roving Feminist Action

We Won't Let Pharmacies Undercut our Victory on the Morning-After Pill!

Feminists won a major victory when our decade long organizing campaign resulted in over-the-counter access for all women and girls to the morning-after pill. But our victory is being seriously undermined. The pill continues to be so outrageously expensive that many of us can't afford to buy it. And now, pharmacies are locking Plan B One-Step in ridiculously large, locked plastic cases, or hiding it behind-the-counter. These boxes are so attention grabbing one feminist likened them to walking across the store in a dunce cap.

We won't stop fighting for justice. Organize with us:

1. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you're interested in planning overall logistics for the roving action.

2. We need more information on whether the Morning-After Pill is being sold in stores, how it's being sold, and how much it costs. Visit your local pharmacy and fill out our survey.

3. Women: come to our organizing meeting on Monday 10/21 at 6:30pm at Judson Memorial Church, 239 Thompson Street (take the A/C/E, B/D/F/M to the W 4th Street station) for final preparation for the action.


4: Save the date: Flashmob action, Sat 10/26 1pm. All are welcome. (Meet up place in lower Manhattan will be sent a week beforehand)

Morning-After Pill Over-the-Counter: The Fight Continues

Help us gather data and take action!

Due to the feminist movement, the morning-after pill is now over-the-counter. However, women are reporting that the cost is very high, and that many pharmacies are enclosing the pill in unnecessarily large, attention-drawing security boxes like these. Additionally, due to the Food & Drug Administration's decision to side with a drug company over women, generic products are still stuck behind-the-counter, and only the brand name, Plan B One-Step, is sold on the shelf.

Visit your neighborhood pharmacy to help us gather data and submit the form.

Women Across the Country Put Morning-After Pill on the Shelf

 

 

Angry with the Obama Administration's appeal of the Morning-After Pill decision, National Women's Liberation put out a call to women across the country to take matters in their own hands. Women in 12 cities flashmobbed pharmacies, dropped banners, and spoke out in the streets. We will not stop until the Obama Administration puts the morning-after pill fully over-the-counter for all women, sign the petition.

Morning-After Pill Week of Action a Huge Success: Actions held from Coast to Coast

If the Obama Administration won’t put the Morning-After Pill on the shelf for everyone, women will!

 

From May 13th to 17th NWL, with the support of Women Organized to Resist and Defend ( WORD), held a week of action for women's self determination and ability to control our lives. Feminists in NYC, Gainesville FL, LA, Sacramento, San Francisco, New Haven, Washington D.C., Chicago, Albuquerque, Syracuse, North Carolina and San Diego dropped banners and held flashmobs in pharmacies, defying the Food and Drug Administration and putting the morning-after pill on the shelf for people of all ages.

For 10 years the Bush and Obama Administrations have held women's health hostage, going to absurd lengths to keep this safe form of birth control out of our hands. Most recently, on May 1st the Obama Administration announced it was appealing a federal judge's order to remove all age and point of sale restrictions on the morning-after pill. Read more on the history and sign the petition here.

Sign the Petition to Tell the Obama Administration to Stop the Appeal: Morning-After Pill Fully Over-the-Counter

map.appeal 

Tell the Obama Administration to Stop the Appeal:

Morning-After Pill Fully Over-the-Counter 


Sign the Petition

(View as PDF)

Read more...

5.13.13 - Join NWL For A Week Of Action

word.banner.drop

Women Organize to Resist and Defend, Answer Coalition, Chicago

 

Week of Action: May 13th-17th

National Women's Liberation, with the support of our allies Women Organized to Resist and Defend (WORD), is organizing a week of action. We are uniting to demand "Access for all, No restrictions!" Birth control is a cornerstone of women's freedom. If the Obama Administration thinks women will simply let this go, they are wrong!

Join us for actions in the cities listed below, or plan an action in your city! Please contact us if you would like to participate in a planning meeting. Organizing kits are available. If you hold a sign, drop a banner, or organize a flashmob to put the Morning-After Pill on the shelf, send us video or pictures. We will compile them. Please forward this message widely.

Tuesday, May 14:
Los Angeles, California
Sacramento, California
San Francisco, California
New Haven, Connecticut
Washington, D.C.
Chicago, Illinois
New York City, New York
Syracuse, New York
Asheville, North Carolina
Seattle, Washington

Friday, May 17:
Gainesville, Florida
Albuquerque, New Mexico

3.26.13 - NWL Pharmacy Flashmob


Women to Obama: Put the Morning-After Pill on the Shelf or We Will

 

 

 

On Tuesday, March 26, 2013, the New York chapter of National Women’s Liberation led a flash-mob action with feminist allies where more than 20 women put the Morning-After Pill on the shelf in a pharmacy in New York City. The action began with New York steering committee member, Dior Vargas, leading the crowd in chants. Then National Women’s Liberation leader, Erin Mahoney, demanded that the Obama Administration and Health and Human Services eliminate the sexist restrictions to the Morning-After Pill, and put it over-the-counter. Women then put the pill on the shelf next to condoms, where it should be!

 

Photos of action (click on thumbnail to view larger image):

nwl.flashmob.4 nwl.flashmob.6 nwl.flashmob.7  nwl.flashmob.9 nwl.flashmob.map nwl.flashmob.group

View Morning-After Pill Brief Organizing Timeline

Sign the Petition to the FDA and HHS to Stop Carding for Birth Control!


PETITION TO THE FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION AND HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES

STOP CARDING FOR BIRTH CONTROL!
PUT THE MORNING-AFTER PILL OVER-THE-COUNTER
(Sign the Petition)

(View as PDF)

Because all women and girls should have the right to control when and if we have children, and we should have unrestricted access to all safe and effective forms of birth control;

Because the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) review of the scientific and medical evidence about the Morning-After Pill (the “MAP,” also known by brand names Plan B One-Step™ or Next Choice®) has found that the MAP is safer than aspirin, and that there is no medical reason to restrict the sale of the MAP to pharmacies or to justify other restrictions about where or how it can be sold;

Read more...

1.12.12 - Women Speakout: Protest Health & Human Services' Decision to Limit Morning-After Pill Access

Watch the video of the Speakout. 

View photos of the Speakout.

 

When: Thursday, Jan 12, 2012 at 1pm – If you work in Manhattan, reserve your lunch break!

Why: Join us to protest HHS’s outrageous and unprecedented decision to overrule the Food and Drug Administration’s recommendation to expand access to the Morning-After Pill to women of all ages. 

What: Women will testify about why immediate and unrestricted access to this safe form of birth control is crucial to our lives.
Where: Manhattan, 26 Federal Plaza, on Broadway at Worth St., 1,2,3, J, Z  to Chambers; N,R to City Hall; 4,5,6 to Brooklyn Bridge

Sponsored by: National Women's Liberation. For more information, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call Brooke Eliazar-Macke at 352-514-7769


Why has Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) Kathleen Sebelius overruled the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) decision to expand access to the Morning-After Pill?

On December 7, 2011, after years of feminist pressure, the FDA finally recommended that the prescription requirement for women under 17 be removed.  This meant that millions of young women could get the Morning-After Pill (also known as “emergency contraception” or Plan B One-Step™) over-the-counter without going through a doctor.  This change would have benefited all women - the pill would no longer be stuck behind-the-counter.  Women would not have faced the sexist insult of showing ID for birth control or answering questions about their sex life in a drugstore line. Instead, the pill would have been on the shelf at any time of day, at any convenient store, bodega, gas station or drugstore, just like condoms.  But this victory was short lived due to HHS's unprecedented decision to overrule the FDA's decision.

We are outraged!  In this case, the Obama Administration is just as willing as the Bush Administration to put anti-birth control politics over science.  

The HHS decision is an attack on women’s reproductive freedom and self-determination. Join us on January 12th.

5.9.06 - Personal testimonies from activist-plaintiffs in the lawsuit against the Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to make the Morning-After Pill available over-the-counter to women of all ages without any restrictions

May 9, 2006

STEPHANIE SEGUIN
President of Gainesville, Florida NOW

I had needed the morning after pill when my boyfriend, who is now my husband, and I had had sex and the condom came off. The following morning, which was a Saturday, I braved the football game day traffic to go to the campus infirmary which was closed. I had no idea where else I could possibly get it. So I just crossed my fingers and hoped that I wouldn't be pregnant, I knew I would want an abortion if I was, rather than having to drop out of school and move back in with my parents. How great it would have been if I could have just had it in my bathroom cabinet or ran to the local drugstore to get it!

Read More

Women deserve access to the morning after pill any time, anywhere, and for any reason. And as for an age restriction, unwanted pregnancy is much more disruptive and dangerous when you're young. A result of not taking the morning after pill when you're 14 can mean having a baby when you're 14.

 

ERIN MAHONEY 
Chair Emeritus, Women's Liberation Birth Control Project

When I needed the morning after pill, I was in Detroit, Michigan for the first time. I had just helped my boyfriend move and we didn't know a soul. We used condoms as our birth control method, but this time I needed the morning after pill. I was luckier than other women. I had gone to a feminist gynecologist, and she had insisted that I take a prescription for the morning after pill with me in case I ever needed it. I had kept it in my medicine bag until that night when I needed it. If I had not had the morning after pill with me, I would not have had the first clue where to start looking for a doctor's office in Detroit, let alone one open on a Saturday night when I needed it. I read the instructions and followed them exactly. I didn't get sick or throw up. I was just relieved I wasn't going to get pregnant.

But what really bothers me about this whole process is that if I happen to go to a good doctor that is willing to write me a prescription just in case I need it, I'm lucky. If I go to a doctor who refuses to prescribe it in advance, I'm out of luck. I shouldn't have to rely on luck to control my life. I shouldn't have to rely on a doctor for a drug that is safe and effective within the first 24 hours after sex.

We have a lot of experts in the room today, but I have taken the morning after pill, and I know what could have happened if I hadn't had it on hand, and I know what could happen to me if it isn't over the counter. I think that makes me an expert.

 

ANNIE TUMMINO
Chair, Women's Liberation Birth Control Project

The first time I needed the Morning-After Pill I went away for a long weekend and got a couple of days behind on my daily birth control pills. Taking the pill is part of my routine and when I am on vacation it is easier to forget. I began to panic. I work at a small business and I had to go in to work since there was no one to cover for me that day. Finally, after hunting around I found a NYC hotline that called in a prescription for me. I took Plan B and had no side effects at all. The next time I was not so lucky. I was on a camping trip with my boyfriend and needed the Morning-After Pill. There was no way for me to get to a doctor so I had to cross my fingers and wait for my next period to come. If it was over-the-counter I would have driven to the nearest gas station or drug store and picked it up. Luckily I didn't get pregnant. I know I am not ready to have a child and I shouldn't have to jump through so many hoops to control my body. The FDA needs to stop holding women's health hostage and approve this safe and effective form of birth control for over-the-counter sales.

 

KELLY MANGAN
Chair, Florida NOW Young Feminist Task Force

Women should not be told when or under what circumstances we can control our bodies. Yet here I stand ironically before a panel many of whom are men having to ask for the right to control my body and direct my life.
I have used the morning-after pill twice after condoms came off inside me while I was having sex. I didn't get pregnant, and I also didn't have any of the over-hyped side effects.

I got the morning after pill from my campus infirmary to have if I ever needed it, but the nurse who prescribed it asked prying questions about my relationship with my partner. She also discouraged me from taking the morning after pill again because of possible side effects, while at the same time encouraged me to go back on birth control pills which could have far more serious side effects than the morning after pill.

If I could really control my fertility, meaning 24 hours a day and without having to beg a doctor or a pharmacist for permission, then I would have more time, more money, and more personal freedom. Basically I would have more control over my life.

1.7.05 - Feminists Sit-In at FDA

Feminists Sit-In at FDA for Morning After Pill Access

National Women's Liberation members block the doors of the Food and Drug Administration, just like the FDA was blocking access to birth control for millions of women (January 7, 2005).

1.7.05 - MORNING-AFTER PILL PROTEST Press Conference and Sit-in at FDA Headquarters

MORNING-AFTER PILL PROTEST
Press Conference and Sit-in at FDA Headquarters
January 7th, 2005

FDA-Sit-In-1Click here to watch a video of the action

Eleven women from Gainesville, FL joined 40 other women from New York, New Jersey, Washington D.C., and Philadelphia on Friday, January 7th, at the FDA headquarters in Rockville, Maryland. As many of you already know, we were there protesting to make the Morning-After Pill available over-the-counter for all women. The action was a great success, and we've gotten press across the country and even in Canada! CBS syndicated the story nationally and we got a great article in the Washington Post.

After a short press conference in front of the building, nine of us staged a sit-in, blocking the entrance of the FDA building, just as the FDA has blocked women's access to the Morning-After Pill (MAP).

We were later arrested and charged with disorderly conduct. The charges were dismissed.

 

Read More

I want to say thank you to everyone who made calls to the FDA, and who encouraged others to make calls too. This really put additional pressure on Steven Galson, who will be making the MAP decision. One FDA representative told us that a lot of people called from Florida on Friday! Great job, you all, keep calling! We're obviously having an effect.

I also wanted to thank all the people who came with us to Maryland. As the nine of us sat blocking the entrance to the FDA building, it gave me enormous courage to see my sisters from the Florida NOW Young Feminist Task Force and Gainesville Area NOW cheering us on. The whole protest was amazing and beautiful. It reminded me of how powerful women are when we unite and fight for the things we want.

After being read our rights, our hands were tied and oneby- one we were dragged away by police from the Department of Homeland Security. My arms and knees are pretty sore from being dragged (and my shoes don't look too hot either), but we were treated rather civilly by the cops, due both to the presence of legal observers and to the sheer number of press.

At the action, I was especially inspired by New York activist Allison Guttu, from the Gainesville Women's Liberation/Redstockings Women of Color Caucus, who defiantly screamed, "Morning-After over-the-counter NOW!" as she was dragged along the pavement. There is a huge picture of her in the Washington Post, taken just before we were all thrown in the back of an armored car and driven away from the scene (where we were later processed and released).

I was also really inspired by (and grateful to) all the activists who helped by coordinating props, taking pictures, providing legal assistance, passing out literature, holding signs, singing loud, and just generally being encouraging. These things were vital to making our action a success.

It was a little scary getting arrested, but I'm glad we did it and I'm glad we had so many protestors on the FDA's doorstep. I think we sent a powerful message to Steven Galson, and to other right-wing conservatives eager to block women's access to birth control.

So let's all keep calling Galson (at 301-594-5400) so he'll make the right decision and make the Morning-After Pill over-the-counter for all women.

Written by Stephanie Seguin, National Women's Liberation Co-Chair and Kelly Mangan, National Women's Liberation Member

Women Speak Out on Abortion flyer

Women-Speakout-on-Abortion1 

Women-Speakout-on-Abortion2

Download the "Women Speak Out on Abortion" flyer [PDF, 200 K] written by the Women's Liberation Birth Control Project.