SPARK visited Washington DC for the In Our Own Voice Conference September 21-25 ! On our last day of the conference SPARK, along with our IOOV partners, went to Capitol Hill to speak with our legislators! Below are some pictures from the conference and from our day on the hill!
SOI introduced you to legislative advocacy; now it’s time to apply what you’ve learned at Legislate THIS!, our annual statewide day of advocacy and action. Come chat with your legislators about important public policy issues. Hear from Rep. Park Cannon, who has been a tireless advocate for Reproductive Justice. This is your chance to make your voice heard!
SPARK’s 2018 Organizing Intensive is Saturday, February 3. Here you will have the opportunity to learn about organizing for Reproductive Justice, talking to your legislators, gentrification in Atlanta, and policies to be on the lookout for this legislative session.
This is an excellent opportunity to heavily engage with pressing issues that affect our communities. As we experience this drastic shift in our political environment, it is increasingly important to focus on building our power and our voices as a community. This will also be an important lead up training in preparation of SPARK’s LegislateTHIS! annual advocacy day at the GA State Capitol. You’re not going to want to miss it!
Sign Up HERE!
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Earlier this year, SPARK worked with GA Representative Park Cannon and the Georgia Department of Health (DPH) to introduce House Bill 454 – a measure that would require facilities that receive HIV prevention and treatment funding from the DPH to share information about PrEP and PEP with their clients even if they received an HIV-negative test result. Our goal was to increase awareness about PrEP and PEP, two proven and effective methods of preventing HIV infections. We are happy to announce that the bill has been ratified and is currently being implemented at facilities across the state!
Join us in celebrating this achievement and in thanking Rep. Cannon for her dedication and revolutionary service to our communities. We were incredibly encouraged by the bipartisan support the bill received and intend to follow this success with with an appropriation bill calling for more funding for HIV prevention and treatment related activities.
LegislateTHIS! is our annual statewide day of action and advocacy where you can expect to hear from key leaders about pertinent public policy issues and educate our policymakers at the GA Capitol about the reproductive justice agenda.
We are just a mere hours away from the 10th Annual LegislateTHIS! taking place tomorrow, THURSDAY FEB 23, from 9:00am – 2:00pm, at Trinity United Methodist Church, and are doubly honored to have Jennifer Barnes as the Keynote Speaker who, among many things, recently delivered an unflinching indictment on the state’s negligent housing practices at SPARK’s hearing with the Georgia Legislative Black Caucus on the HIV epidemic in Georgia.
For the 2017 legislative session, SPARK invokes Kimberlee Crenshaw’s work on #Intersectionality, and calls on YOU to carry on in the tradition of grassroots community leaders, like Jennifer, who believe that we can speak truth to power and hold our elected representatives accountable through the collective power of #ReproductiveJustice.
Register for the 10th Annual Legislate THIS! today.
Did you know that pregnant women serving time in correctional facilities in states like Georgia are shackled and handcuffed while they give birth to their child?
Check out this letter I co-wrote with Dr. Krystal Redman, Executive Director of Spark Reproductive Justice Now to members of the Georgia General Assembly about this horrible practice!
This practice continues in Georgia despite the fact that doctors and criminologist alike have labeled the practice both unnecessary and unsafe for mother and child, especially consider the fact that there has never been a reported case of a pregnant women escaping custody during labor.
Spark and I believe that we must dismantle the prison industrial complex to truly save Black women, however we realize that Georgia has recently been on a path of making significant reforms to the criminal justice and prison system in Georgia, however if these reforms do not ban shackling pregnant women during labor then these reforms are illegitimate because they do not center the experiences of Black women who make up the bulk of Georgia’s female prison population.
Please call State Representative Alan Powell, Chairman of the Committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security at 404-463-3793 and demand that a hearing be held on this important legislation!
– Devin Barrington-Ward, SPARK Lobbyist.
Join us at The 10th Annual LegislateTHIS! on Thursday, FEB 23, to learn more about Georgia’s shackling laws and other pressing policy issues that affect our communities.
Register NOW! http://bit.ly/2kHYdD2
In observance of National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, SPARK and the Georgia Legislative Black Caucus will be hosting a public hearing co-sponsored by SisterLove, Inc tomorrow, Thursday, February 9, 2017, at 1:30PM in Room 415 of the Paul Coverdell Legislative Office Building at the State Capitol.
Georgia is one of 32 states that place an undue criminal liability on people living with HIV and SPARK, along with our community partners, has been working as part of a national task force, THE GEORGIA COALITION TO END HIV CRIMINALIZATION, to address the HIV epidemic in the South and help modernize HIV laws.
Join us at the hearing and learn more about how you can lend your voice to the movement.
This is the first in a series of events for our Speak Justice Take Action programing.
Up next is The SOI Advocacy Training And Brunch, taking place on Sunday FEB. 19,
and our education day at the State Capitol, Legislate THIS!, slated for Thursday, FEB. 23.
Legislate THIS! is our annual statewide day of action and advocacy, with this year’s session taking place on Thursday, February 23, 2017. You can expect to hear from key leaders about pertinent public policy issues and educate our policymakers at the GA Capitol about many of our obstacles that meet at the crossroads of reproductive justice.
Read our 2017 Legislative Brief.
In celebration of the momentous 10th annual session, SPARK invokes Kimberlee Crenshaw’s work on Intersectionality, and calls on YOU to carry on in the tradition of grassroots community leaders who believe that we can speak truth to power and hold our elected representatives accountable through the collective power of Reproductive Justice.
Doors open/breakfast served at 8:30AM at Trinity United Methodist Church.
Register for the 10th Annual Legislate This! here.
View and share the event on Facebook and EventBrite.
Before it was a buzzword, intersectionality was a term that black women and queer and trans people of color used to identify shared experiences that are now largely recognized as part of a broad-scale system of domination used to subjugate our communities.
First coined in 1989 by American civil rights advocate and leading scholar of critical race theory, Kimberlé Williams Crenshaw, intersectionality not only gave a name to the systems of oppression, but also lit a path of resistance in its recognition of our collective power to demolish these systems and rebuild an inclusive model of governance.
Thank you to everyone who came out to the 9th Annual LegislateTHIS! This day would not have been possible without your continued support of SPARK and dedication to realizing Reproductive Justice in Georgia and the South!