Press Release

Reproductive Justice Network convenes in Albuquerque

More than 20 national organizations meet to discuss reproductive health and social justice
Wednesday, September 28, 2011
Contact Information: 
Hakim Bellamy 505.828.3388

Policies and decisions about reproductive health have profound effects on communities—impacting the civil rights and physical health of women in America.

National organizations concerned with these issues will convene in Albuquerque Sept. 26-30 to discuss the future of reproductive health and justice issues as part of the Reproductive Justice Network Annual Meeting. The conference is hosted by three New Mexico organizations: Media Literacy Project, Young Women United and Kalpulli Izkalli. The Reproductive Justice Network is an initiative spearheaded by the Third Wave Foundation, and is designed to support the work done by and for young women of color, trans- and gender-nonconforming youth under 30.

“Communities have been left out of mainstream reproductive rights conversations,” says Mia Herndon, Third Wave Foundation executive director. “What Third Wave decided to do, is to really center the voices of those communities that had a great deal of reproductive health disparities, but who had yet to be in the leadership of the solutions to shift those disparities.”

The reproductive justice movement believes that justice will only be achieved when everyone has the power and resources to make healthy, informed, non-coerced decisions about their bodies, sexuality and families.

The reproductive justice framework also recognizes that all individuals are part of families and communities, and gears decision-making toward strategies that support the inclusion of women.

“The welfare of our mothers, sisters and daughters has become less and less of a priority in New Mexico,” says Media Literacy Project Executive Director Andrea Quijada. “If families are the cornerstone of community and women are the cornerstone of the family, we will not see a healthy New Mexico until we prioritize the status of women here.”

And reproductive justice issues, Young Women United Executive Director Adriann Barboa notes, extend beyond traditional questions of family planning.
“Women are the highest uninsured population in our state,” Barboa says. “Reproductive justice looks at all aspects of a woman’s health, from access to quality and safe care, to her economic means to care for her family. It’s time that those most impacted by these issues are at the center of creating the solutions.”

The Reproductive Justice Network Annual Meeting and Third Wave Convening will be held at Hotel Albuquerque Monday, Sept. 26 through Friday, Sept. 30.

For further information or to arrange press credentials for the conference, contact Hakim Bellamy at 505.828.3388 or hakim [at] medialiteracyproject [dot] org.

Media Literacy Project is a non-profit organization that advances education and advocacy for media justice.