Planned Parenthood of Arizona (PP) and the Arizona Democratic Party (ADP) held a joint press conference at the Arizona Capitol on June 24, 2022, the day the US Supreme Court struck down Roe v Wade, the landmark abortion rights case from 1973.
At the press conference, PP President and CEO Brittany Fonteno said that Planned Parenthood stopped all abortion care services and canceled appointments in Arizona that day, due to multiple conflicting state laws on the books.
Continue reading Arizona Reacts to End of Abortion Rights (video)
In early May 2022, a leaked Supreme Court opinion showed the court may be leaning toward eliminating or severely limiting Roe v Wade, the landmark abortion rights case from the early 1970s.
There were rallies and marches around the country to protest this ideological strike against women’s rights and body autonomy by a Supreme Court packed with appointees from a discredited President.
Here are two of the speeches from the Tucson rally on May 14, 2022 — one by Congressman Raul Grijalva and the second one by State Senator Stephanie Stahl Hamilton. The video clip begins with Mayor Regina Romero leading the unity clap as I arrived at Armory Park.
Continue reading Stop Abortion Bans Rally, May 14, 2022 (video)
For years, I have been pounding a drum about the need for the state of Arizona to fully fund maternal and child health and to tackle Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs). Too many Moms and babies are dying or living with poverty and disease due to stingy policies in Arizona.
Arizona’s Maternal Mortality and Morbidity Report (AMMMR) showed that 80 percent of the post childbirth maternal deaths were preventable and 20 percent were suicides. Moms need help — especially now with the added stress of COVID19 and limited childcare options.
M&C Health got a much-need boost recently with the passage of increased funding for Healthy Families (HB2111). Healthy Families is a program that was cut dramatically in the past 10 years and never restored. It is a voluntary home visitation postpartum program. Health educators visit new moms and their babies and teach topics like breast feeding, healthy diet, and coping skills, along with strategies to be a better mom.
Continue reading There’s Progress in Maternal & Child Health … But We’re Not Done (video)
This week House and Senate members are gathering co-sponsors and filing many of their bills. This year, as I have in the past, I am focusing on the Social Determinants of Health and Adverse Childhood Experiences. Arizona is one of the stingiest states in the US. We force people to live with sickness and poverty.
Governmental policies should give people the freedom to thrive. That means helping families with food insecurity, housing insecurity and financial insecurity. That means helping them keep a roof over their heads and food on the table.
Continue reading My Focus Is Food & Housing Security (video)
The Finance Advisory Committee of the Arizona Legislature met recently. This group of financial experts from the universities and elsewhere meet quarterly with the Joint Legislative Budget Committee (JLBC) to advise them and the Legislature on the state’s economic outlook.
The October 2021 Finance Advisory Committee meeting was particularly rosy. During the pandemic, Arizona’s state government and residents received a total of $51 billion in aid from the federal government. These funds kept many Arizonans afloat during the pandemic and greatly helped our state’s financial position. The state coffers are brimming with tax revenue and gaming proceeds. Arizona corporations saw record profits. The Rainy Day Fund has $970 million in it. Ninety-four percent of the prepandemic jobs have returned.
During my five years in the Arizona House, I have been a crusader for increased funding and services for maternal and child health. Arizona is worst in the country for Adverse Childhood Experiences. Far too many Arizona children grow up with food insecurity, housing insecurity and financial insecurity, while the state government gives away billions each year in tax breaks.
With so much cash on hand, it’s time for the Arizona Legislature to invest in the health and wellbeing of children and families – instead of more tax breaks for corporations and wealthy Arizonans.
Continue reading Podcast: With Cash in the Coffers, Will Arizona Finally Invest in Healthy Children & Families? (video)
Work has changed dramatically in the past 40 years.
In the 1980s, President Reagan busted the air traffic controllers’ union, corporations began closing factories and offshoring American jobs to countries with cheap labor, and trickledown economics dictated tax cuts for the rich and the dregs for the rest of us.
It the 1990s, banking deregulation paved the way for the Wall Street crash of 2008 by eliminating financial protections enacted after the Great Depression.
During the Great Recession, which dragged on for years, almost 9 million Americans lost their jobs. Unemployment hit its peak at 10% in 2009. Although, many governors tout robust recoveries from the 2008 Wall Street crash, the jobs Americans have today are dramatically different from jobs in the 1970s – before union busting, offshoring, and tax cuts for the rich became commonplace. Before politicians cared more about fundraising and getting elected, than about the people they claim to serve.
Continue reading Podcast: Labor Day, How Unions Are Organizing Arizona