This has been a very difficult two weeks for me. I am from North St. Louis County, not far from Ferguson, Missouri. The shooting of Michael Brown, and events that followed, have left me angry and heart-broken. I have simultaneouslyfeltemboldened to act against injustice and helpless to fight against the monster that is systematic oppression.
Thankfully, I am able to channel my emotions into actions and advocacy at Feminist Women's Health Center. FWHC affirms the refrain of other organizations addressing Ferguson: this is a Reproductive Justice issue! As Reproductive Justice advocates, we aim to protect not only the right to decide whether and when to have a child and the ability to have a healthy pregnancy, but also the ability to parent with dignity and to have healthy, safe families and relationships.
But when a parent fears bringing children into a world with a constant threat of violence and when any act of disobedience is used to justify death, Reproductive Justice cannot be achieved. When people of color cannot walk down their own streets without fear of harassment, injury, or death by the very people meant to protect them, Reproductive Justice cannot be achieved.
We cannot stand silent in the face of violence against people of color, hyper-criminalization of black and brown communities, and mass incarceration. Patterns of discriminatory policing and excessive use of force against people of color inevitably restrict reproductive freedom.
FWHC asks that supporters and allies stand with Ferguson, and fight against the intersecting oppressions that inhibit Reproductive Justice. Here are some ways you can help:
- Follow FWHC on Twitter and Facebook to get the latest on national and local calls to action regarding the events in Ferguson.
- Join our A.C.T.I.O.N. Team! You will have an opportunity to register new Georgia voters, engage, educate and empower inactive voters, mobilize our base to act, attend hearings and press conferences, advocate for reproductive justice, and gain a greater understanding of Georgia's political process!
- Support Ferguson's local organizing efforts and help build the nation-wide call to action. Check out Ways to Support the Movement in Ferguson and Hands Up United. On-the-ground organizers in Missouri and other states are working together and coordinating efforts to bring change, and would appreciate your help.
The events in Ferguson are deeply troubling, but we must not become paralyzed by horror. It is clear that the Michael Brown shooting, and similar events, are symptomatic of larger, long-standing, injustices that inaction will not remedy. FWHC will continue to stand in solidarity with Ferguson and fight for reproductive justice alongside our allies. We urge you to join us in advocating for reproductive justice, including racial justice and non-violence - now!
Community Education and Advocacy Manager