Ashley Van Brocklin is the legislative and field coordinator for Nevada Advocates for Planned Parenthood Affiliates. NAPPA and the National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League (NARAL) are hosting the Feminist Holiday Party Dec. 28 at the Jungle Reno, 246 W. First St. It kicks off at 5:30 p.m. Learn more at http://bit.ly/2BfCydE.
I saw the Feminist Holiday Party on Facebook and was kind of stoked by the idea. Tell me a bit about it.
NARAL—and Molly Lewis, the other woman you reached out to—she reached out to us. We’re coalition partners. They host a monthly meetup, and she asked, this month, we would co-host a Feminist Holiday Party with them, which I’m super excited about—because we’ve had some really strong legislative wins, both of us, separately and together in 2017. And our activists have really done a lot this year, and we want to give thanks and get together. And we thought it would be great to do it after the Christmas holiday, because it can be kind of depressing that next day—or whatever anybody celebrates, not just a Christmas holiday. But, you know that slump afterward, so we wanted to get together and celebrate our wins.
Talk to me about some of those wins.
For NARAL, they were able to get pregnancy accommodations passed. … And they had [Assembly Bill] 249, which is a 12-month birth control dispensing bill, where you can get up to 12 months of your birth control filled at a time for one co-pay or no co-pay, if that’s what your insurance is. For Planned Parenthood, we had [Senate Bill] 233, which is also a 12-month birth control dispensing bill. It also codifies into state law some of the women’s health care benefits in the Affordable Care Act—so even if that’s overturned, we will still have some of that in effect in Nevada. We also, in 2017, had the pink tax pass through the legislature, so it’ll be a ballot initiative to take the tax off of feminine hygiene products.
Rad. Those are some big ones.
Yeah, we’re super excited. We also had SB 122, which was a family planning bill, which creates a grant for family planning services here in Nevada. That’s going to be imperative, very helpful for the rural communities—where they can have to travel up to 100 miles to just meet to a nurse.
All right. I can feel it—the things to celebrate. And we’ve had Catherine Cortez Masto representing us all year, Nevada’s first female U.S. senator.
We are very proud of her.
Right on. You guys are also collecting donations, right?
Yes, we are collecting donations. We haven’t completely confirmed which women’s shelter we’re going to donate them to. We’re having a hard time getting in contact with people. But we will be donating warm clothes and feminine hygiene products.
On Facebook, I thought I saw something about bringing gifts you maybe don’t want or need, too. Is that right?
Anything you want to say about the event or about how people can get involved with your organizations in the coming year?
Showing up is the best way to get involved. We always have member sign-in sheets, and we will be contacting new sign-ups who show up in the beginning of the year to get involved, because we have a big year ahead of us.