Advocates' Blog
Advocates' Blog
The Countdown to NYHAAD Has Begun!
Monday, 07 April 2014 12:57

by Sulava Gautam-Adhikary, Program Coordinator, Health and Social Equity  

The countdown to National Youth HIV & AIDS Awareness Day has officially begun! Join thousands of youth activists and their allies across the nation who are planning events for the day.

To help kick-start your planning for April 10, check out the following toolkits:

  • The Online Campaign Starter Kit includes a wide range of materials including how to get involved in the official #NYHAAD photo campaign; how to create personal video messages; and how to engage on Facebook and on Twitter!
  • The Media Toolkit includes a press release, templates and tips on how to give an interview; and how to get your own local proclamation recognizing the day!

We’re so excited for you to join us in commemorating the second annual National Youth HIV & AIDS Awareness Day on April 10, 2014! Don’t forget to register your event so we can showcase all the great things happening on the day.



Week of Artivism!
Monday, 31 March 2014 11:53

1 in 3: These Are Our Stories - paperback book now available!1in3-afy-flash

Art begins with resistance.” - André Gide

Art has great power. It can get your attention. It can make you think. It can even change your mind. That’s why art can be such a powerful tool for activists. Now we’re asking you to use that power to change the conversation around abortion.

Host a 1 in 3 Week of Artivism event to showcase people’s real stories of experiences with abortion.

During the week of April 21-27, activists around the country will host 1 in 3 Week of Artivism events to bring new audiences to the real stories about abortion experience which people have shared with the 1 in 3 Campaign. You can participate by reserving a space on your campus or community and setting up an interactive display of stories from the 1 in 3 Campaign.

We’ll send you a “display in a box.” You assemble, personalize, and set up the exhibit. You don’t have to be Picasso to participate - you just need a display space and some time to construct the display.

Rally at the Supreme Court
Wednesday, 26 March 2014 08:22

1 in 3: These Are Our Stories - paperback book now available!1in3-afy-flash

In the words of ROCK STAR youth activist Kirin Gupta, "“What is at stake today is an issue of sexism, classism, and oppression. It is the control exercised by money and power of a few who are twisting our country’s freedom of religion to deny basic freedoms to young, often already marginalized bodies. These choices are ours—not our schools, not our bosses, not anyone else’s.”

Today's Supreme Court hearing on contraception and religious liberty was a big deal and we could not be more proud of the response from our friends, allies, co-workers, partner orgs, and youth activists all around the country.  Our voices have been heard, and we are watching!  Check out video of Kirin's speech!

Visit #DearSCOTUS for a comprehensive look at all that went down today, but here are a few pics too!  

March 25: All Eyes on the Supreme Court
Thursday, 20 March 2014 07:12


On March 25, the Supreme Court will hear arguments in the Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood cases - two corporations which have sued in order to deny coverage for birth control to their employees.  This coverage for basic health care is required under the Affordable Care Act.  But corporations have declared that their personal objections to birth control should mean that none of their employees should have it covered.  These two court cases are important not just because the right to health care is in danger, but because the current debate around religious liberty could have far-reaching effects.  A decision in favor of the two companies could open the door for employers to deny coverage for anything they disagree with, including mental health, LGBT care, and coverage of dependents.  And it could lead to more laws like the anti-LGBT law recently vetoed in Arizona.

Corporations shouldn't get a free pass to discriminate.  Join us in person or online as we demonstrate against the co-opting of religious liberty.

Twisting of Religious Liberty
Wednesday, 19 March 2014 06:42

by Amber Morley Rieke, Special Projects Fellow

The Supreme Court is about to hear two challenges to the Affordable Care Act (ACA) requirement that private insurance plans cover contraception for women with a prescription at no out-of-pocket cost. In Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood, owners of for-profit companies argue that the requirement violates their religious freedom. They want the same exemptions from the mandate that religious institutions receive.

As we wait for the Court’s decisions, which should come by June, women of all ages are paying less for essential health services and prescriptions. The rulings could ensure contraceptive coverage continues, or force the government to exempt companies as well as churches. Thousands, or millions, of women could lose access to affordable contraception.

No more “free passes” to discriminate
Friday, 14 March 2014 07:52

Should corporations be given a free pass to discriminate against their employees?

That’s what the Supreme Court will be deciding on March 25 when they will hear cases from two corporations that object to providing insurance which includes coverage for birth control.

Be a part of an online picket line. Make your voice heard on our #DearSCOTUS Digital Soapbox.

Share your thoughts about why affordable and available contraception is important, what you think about the co-opting of religious liberty, and what’s at stake for you. Through your blogs, Instagram pics and video, YouTube clips and tweets we’ll capture an online picket line in solidarity with those protesting at the Supreme Court. All you have to do is use the hashtag #DearSCOTUS. So make a sign, record a video, or write a blog and join the protest.

Advocates' Statement on Arizona's Senate Bill 1062
Friday, 28 February 2014 08:12

Advocates for Youth is relieved that Governor Jan Brewer finally vetoed Senate Bill 1062, a bill that would have allowed businesses to refuse service based on the owner's religious objections. The bill would have allowed restaurants, stores, and other businesses refuse to serve LGBT folks, including youth, just because of who they are. The bill's passage in the House and Senate was shameful, and Gov. Brewer’s delay in vetoing it inexplicable.

In about ten states, and soon in the U.S. Supreme Court with the Hobby Lobby’s lawsuit which argues a religious right to deny employees insurance coverage for birth control, we are seeing the co-opting of our country’s strong tradition of religious liberty to provide a free pass for discrimination. It is a concerted effort to establish an unprecedented "religious-right-of-corporations."  Read More

Equality Marches On in California
Wednesday, 26 February 2014 08:55

by Hemly Ordóñez, State Strategies Manager

In July we asked you to stand with transgender and gender non-conforming students in California. Thanks to your actions Governor Brown heard us LOUD and clear and signed the Student Success and Opportunity Act into law. Together we ensured that transgender students can participate in student activities and facilities that match their gender identity.

Anti- transgender groups attempted to push a referendum that would have repealed this law. The good news is that they lost! On Monday, California Secretary of State confirmed that the referendum didn’t have enough valid signatures to place the measure on the state ballot. Win!

Standing up for equality is not something we do once: we must step up to the plate each time we face oppression. We want to give a huge shout out to the Support All Students Coalition and individual members for their hard work.

Send a tweet to thank GLSEN, GSA Network, Forward Together, Equality California or the Transgender Law Center for their continued work that continues to build equality and supportive environments for all students.

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a grassroots movement to start a new conversation about abortion
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