Blog & Op-Eds, Blog, Equal Rights

Highlights from Billion Dollar Divide: Virginia’s Sentencing, Corrections and Criminal Justice Challenge

(04/15/2014) The Justice Policy Institute (JPI) is out with a great new report, and its findings should serve as a wake up call to Virginia’s lawmakers: read more »

Equal Pay Day is a Call to Action! Let’s Continue Working to Achieve Equal Pay for Women

(04/08/2014) April 8 is Equal Pay Day, the symbolic day into 2014 a woman must work to earn as much as a man did in 2013 alone. On average women in the United States today still earn just 77 cents for every dollar that men earn and that is cause for concern. The wage gap needs to decrease and we are working hard to ensure that it will soon decrease for Virginia’s women. read more »

Will Manassas use its Zoning Law Update to Undermine Reproductive Freedom?

(04/02/2014) The Manassas City Council recently debated whether to update its decades-old zoning laws, including those that apply to medical facilities. read more »

Celebrating Five Amazing Women and Their Right to Love as We Close Women’s History Month

(03/27/2014) Virginia is for lovers, or so they say. Yet, for many Virginians this motto couldn’t be further from the truth. As Women’s History Month comes to an end, we honor five Virginia women who have stood up for their right to love the people they love – thus paving the way for a Virginia that is truly for ALL lovers. read more »

Legalized Discrimination Stops Here!

(03/10/2014) It was all over the news. Just a few weeks ago, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer vetoed legislation that would have allowed businesses to deny service to gay and lesbian customers. The legislation rightly received national attention – it conjured up memories of a time when people were refused service at hotels and lunch counters because of the color of their skin or the God they worship. read more »

A (Possible) First Step Toward Justice for Virginia’s Forced Sterilization Victims

(03/09/2014) During Virginia’s shameful eugenics program, from 1927 to 1979, the Commonwealth sterilized between 7,200 and 8,300 people without their consent. The rationale? Unbelievably, the Commonwealth deemed these individuals “unfit” to procreate (read more about this program here). It is a shameful chapter of Virginia’s history. read more »

Denying Funding for Abortion for Low-Income Women Is Not Fair

(03/08/2014) Receiving a diagnosis that your fetus has an incapacitating physical or mental anomaly can be heart wrenching for a woman and her family. It’s something no woman should ever have to go through, but if, in consultation with her doctor, a woman decides to have an abortion, we should ensure that the woman’s ability to exercise this constitutional right is not contingent on the size of her bank account. read more »

House of Delegates Refuses to Ban the Box

(02/28/2014) For an ever growing number of Virginians, the criminal history background box on employment applications makes it difficult for an otherwise qualified applicant to get the job. It’s past time for Virginia to ban the use of this box on employment applications – it is discriminatory, unnecessary, and unfair. read more »

Protecting the Religious Liberty of Virginia’s Public School Students

(02/25/2014) In recent years, we have seen repeated efforts to pass legislation that purports to protect individual religious expression, but instead diminishes religious freedom by allowing government to force religion on unwilling listeners. The latest such effort is Senate Bill 236. While its supporters tout the bill as protecting public school students’ freedom of expression, its actual effect will be to require students to submit to coercive prayer and proselytizing at school events. read more »

Governor McAuliffe – It’s Past Time to End Virginia’s Felon Disenfranchisement!

(02/17/2014) This past week the nation’s top attorney, Eric Holder, spoke eloquently about the debilitating harms caused by felon disenfranchisement laws. Attorney General Holder called such laws “unnecessary and unjust” and based on "centuries-old conceptions of justice that were too often based on exclusion, animus, and fear." We agree! read more »

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