Yesterday, women from Eaton County held a press conference to highlight efforts by Republican Rep. Tom Barrett (MI-71) to deny women reproductive justice in their lives. In conjunction with the press conference, they released an issue guide (HERE) that details bills sponsored and supported by Barrett and two of his colleagues, John Bizon and Holly Hughes, that serve to impede a woman’s ability to obtain a safe and legal abortion and to access other reproductive healthcare services.
“Every woman has the right to make decisions about her own body, whether it is to have a healthy pregnancy or to choose not to have a pregnancy. A woman should have the ability to do what’s best for her and her family,” said Lansing resident Bilky Joda-Miller. “Representative Barrett should be working to ensure that women have the resources they need to make the best, most informed choice about when and how to have children or not, and empower women to be the best parents they can be.”
The guide shows seven different bill co-sponsored and/or supported by Barrett with his votes that limit women’s access to reproductive healthcare, making it very clear that he puts his personal beliefs over the health concerns of women in Michigan. He even co-sponsored legislation that prohibits sex education teachers from providing information on the correct way to use contraception. Given his history, one would think that Rep. Barrett actually WANTS women to become pregnant, the living embodiment of the stereotypical male who wants his women “barefoot and pregnant”.
Margaret Keeler, FNP, BC, and Eaton County resident put it this way:
As a family nurse practitioner, I know firsthand how important it is for women to have access to a full range of reproductive healthcare. It’s deeply concerning to me that Representative Barrett has taken actions that aim to restrict access to reproductive healthcare. We need elected leaders who will work to make sure that women have affordable and accessible healthcare including access to a full range of reproductive services from contraception to pre- and post-natal healthcare.
Look for more of these sorts of events in the coming weeks as women across the state stand up to be heard and to shine a light on the anti-women, anti-Choice, forced-birth actions being taken by their legislators.