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May 7, 2009


The tenth annual National Women’s Health Week will kick off on Mother's Day Sunday, May 10th and will run through Saturday, May 16th.

It's a nationwide undertaking coordinated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office on Women's Health (OWH). During this week communities, businesses, government, health organizations, and other groups work together to educate women about steps they can take to improve their physical and mental health and lower their risks of certain diseases.

Here in Arizona, Planned Parenthood is contributing through a variety of activities including breast cancer screenings on May 16 and a public outreach about prevention on May 13 in conjunction with President Obama’s visit to deliver the ASU commencement address.

They were also scheduled to present health information at the Women’s Health Expo & Conference being organized by the Governor’s Office for Children, Youth, and Families. Unfortunately, Governor Jan Brewer has decided to exclude the preventive health information provided by Planned Parenthood Arizona.

In response to Brewer's ban, Planned Parenthood Arizona issued the following statement:

As a result, Planned Parenthood Arizona, an organization that thousands of Arizona women and families trust, will not be offering information about sexually transmitted infection prevention and treatment, early cancer detection, and the benefits of regular well-women exams.

It is alarming and potentially dangerous that information offered to help women take control of their reproductive lives is not being included at a women’s health event! This flies in the face of the goals of National Women’s Health Week.

Planned Parenthood Arizona is disheartened and concerned by the Governor's actions. We asked to meet with Governor Brewer to explain Planned Parenthood Arizona’s focus on prevention. Since then we’ve written to describe in detail the health threats confronting Arizona women. The Governor has not responded to these repeated requests, and the ban on the health information for which Planned Parenthood Arizona is respected, remains in place!

We are left wondering what priority is more important to Governor Brewer than promoting and protecting the health of Arizona women, young people and families.

What's so disheartening about Brewer's decision is that she would introduce right-wing, ideologue politics into an event that should transcend politics all together. Certainly, as a woman, Brewer has to be aware of the obstacles and challenges women face in trying to get accurate, unbiased health information that specifically addresses their problems.

Given that, how can she, in good conscience, take an action that would block health information that could potentially save lives for no other reason than tired, worn-out, ideological arguments that have long-since been discredited. She should be ashamed of herself. Certainly, her actions bring shame on the beautiful state of Arizona.

If you would like to express how you feel you can contact the Governor by phone - 602-542-4331 (or
Toll Free at 1-800-253-0883) - by fax at 602-542-1381 or by filling out the online email form.


Purple said...

My mind is still revolving as a result of the news that the non-elected Gov. can ban one of the most valuable information sources for women from an Expo.... If the current Gov. intends to attempt election in the future, I will vote for the opponent.

This is how power can be abused. The Gov. has obviously voiced her narrow opinions and slapped the concept of Women's LIberation in the face.

Shame on you, Gov. Brewer, for trying to put women back in the Dark Ages!!!!

Steve Krotz said...

Thanks for your comment Purple.

Obviously, I totally agree with you. So, looks like 2010 is another election year we need to get involved in.

Let's defeat this narrow-minded, right-winger. We already have too many of them in this state!