As our local Public Policy Chair, and as BPW Florida Public Policy Chair with a National Focus, I have been working with Andrea Johnson White, BPW Florida State-focused Policy Chair. Together and with the support of Susan Banks, BPW Florida President, we have initiated a "Women are Watching Postcard Campaign." I encourage you to contact our Congressman, Vern Buchanan and our two Senators, Mark Rubio and Bill Nelson to voice your support of women's rights in this year's very important legislative agenda. Please read this Call to Action, and please Act.
BPW/FL Public Policy Legislative Call For Action
BPW/FL is an issues based organization. For our newer members attached is a copy of our Legislative Platform adopted by our members at our June 2010 State Conference. We must not lose sight of our fundamental rights. Now it is the time to build the future for women, not chip away at it.
In Washington, the House of Representatives is poised to pass the FULL YEAR CONTINUING APPROPRIATIONS ACT 2011 (H.R.1); therefore, we must contact our Senators that the $100 billion in funding cuts would fall unfairly on the backs of women, students and working families by cutting or terminating funding for several important programs. The proposed cuts would end: programs that help children succeed in school, help workers pursue job training, end funding for community health programs such as Title X which provides health care for low income women and families and would make draconian cuts in programs that help protect women against sex discrimination and pay discrimination. It is time to send the message that "YOU promised to create jobs and strengthen the economy...do not support legislation that undermines these goals and WE women are holding you to that election promise".
Finally, we must tell congress to focus on jobs, not divisive social issues. HR 3, for example, would punish private employers who provide health care for their workers if their plans cover abortion services. Under this bill, abortion services would cover only those women who had been "forcibly raped "and only minors who have been victims of incest. Urge your representatives to vote NO on H.R.3.
Take a stand today and write your representatives. The message is clear: You promised jobs and a stronger economy.
Do not cut $100 billion from FY11 appropriations that would have a lasting, detrimental impact on Americans, particularly working families, women and children. Stop wasting time on divisive social issues impacting women's health and reproductive rights. Pass the Paycheck Fairness Act to provide pay equity for women.
At long last, let us have an Equal Rights Amendment passed -let us have three more states ratify the amendment and challenge the deadline.
Marie Rust, BPW/FL Public Policy Chair, National Focus
Andrea Johnson White, BPW/FL Public Policy Chari, State Focus
CLICK HERE to download a copy of the BPW/FL 2010-2011 Legislative Platform.
Contact Information for Florida Legislators:
Senator Bill Nelson
716 HART SENATE OFFICE BUILDING WASHINGTON DC 20510
Senator Marco Rubio
B40A DIRKSEN SENATE OFFICE BUILDING WASHINGTON DC 20510
Congressman Vern Buchanan
111 South Orange Avenue
Floor 2R, Suite 202W
Sarasota, FL 34236