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Reproductive Justice Workshop

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					                       Reproductive Justice Workshop

Goals:
   1. To discuss oppression of women by men over the centuries, focusing on reproduction
      rights and freedoms (lack of)
   2. To understand what factors impact a real choice to reproduce or not, reproductive justice,
      for women of color
   3. To appreciate struggles, resistance, victories and lessons from long line of women’s
      rights activism

Agenda [80 min]:
   1.   Introduction & Ice-breaker [15 mins]
   2.   Small group discussions & poster-making [30 mins]
   3.   Reproductive Justice Timeline [30 mins]
   4.   Evaluation [5 mins]

Supplies Needed:
   1. Butcher paper, markers, poster board, colored paper, glue sticks, post-it notes, tape
   2. Discussion Questions for Small Groups – Handout 1
   3. Timeline Slips, Timeline Dates

Visuals Needed:
   1. Workshop Agenda & Goals
   2. Timeline of Major Dates on theWall

1. Introduction & Ice-Breaker [15 min]
A. Introduction
    This workshop discusses the control men have had and want to maintain on women,
       specifically on their rights to reproduce or not and whether women of color have had or
       have a real choice to procreate in a healthy, well-being environment.

B. Ice-Breaker
    Give each participant a post-it note. Have each person decide their answer to the
       following question: Do you think men have more power in society
       than women?                                                          YES               NO
    If they say, yes, have them write an example of this from their own
       experience on the post-it note.
    If they say no, have them write why they think men don't have
       more power than women.
    Have each participant place their post-it notes on a butcher paper in
       the front of the room, with all the "YES" answers on one side of the
       paper and the "NO" answers on the other side.
      Close ice-breaker by reviewing examples. Explain that most of us have lived in societies
       for centuries where men have had more power and benefited at the expense of women.

C. Review Agenda & Goals

2. Small Group Discussion & Poster-Making [30 min]
A. Break group into five groups (depending on total number of participants.) Ask each group to
   discuss one of the following statements. Ask each group to use poster board, markers,
   colored paper, and glue sticks to design a poster that shows what the statement means to
   them in 10 minutes. Let them know that they will have 2 minutes to report back to the whole
   group. Distribute Handout 1.
B. Have each group come up and present their statement and poster. Recap main points
    discussed. Explain that next part of the discussion involves key points in history that support
    the statements just explained.

3. Reproductive Justice Timeline [30 min]
A. Give out the 10 timeline slips to different participants.

B. Review the timeline in chronological order by asking participants to come up and
   present/explain the event they have and place it on the timeline.

C. Discussion questions:
    How did laws, policies and practices around reproduction affect the self-determination of
      communities of color?
    How did these policies and practices affect the health of women of color in particular?
    What are some modern-day examples similar to these historical examples of how the
      health of our communities is in danger? (e.g. war/militarism, pollution, lack of access to
      health care, etc.)? What do you think of these problems?
    How do you think women’s health is affected by these real life examples? How are
      women and men affected differently by these problems?

D. Summary points
     The issue of ‘choice’ or ‘reproductive freedom’ is not just about abortion, but about a
      woman (and by extension her family) having the freedom to decide what happens to her
      body and her life, whether than means she wants to have children or not, how many
      children she wants to have, etc. Every one of us has the right to not have her body
      changed (sterilized) against her will, and all of us should have access to information
      about sex, birth control, etc. so that we can make the choices that are best for us.

      Throughout history, and even today, many of the same people (right wingers,
       Republicans, conservative folks) that want to limit a woman’s right to have an abortion
       also think gay people are evil, working hard to limit sex education for young people, to
       encourage young people to abstain from sex. They want to keep information from young
       people to control them (parental notification is only one part of this control).
4. Evaluation [5 mins]
A. Go around:
    What is something that you learned?
    What did you like?
    What can be changed?
                        Small Group Discussion

                                 Statement 1

    For most of human existence and in most
  societies, women have been considered to be
           property and subject to men.
Instructions:
    Read the statement. What is it saying? Do you agree?
    Can you think of examples of how women have been, and at times still are,
       considered to be property and subject to men? Why do you think that is?
    Use poster board to draw or describe your answers. Prepare to report back to
       the entire group.




                        Small Group Discussion

                                 Statement 2

The ability of women to control what happens to
our bodies is constantly challenged by poverty,
racism, environmental degradation, sexism, and
              homophobia in the US.
Instructions:
    Read the statement. What is it saying?
    Can you break down the following terms: poverty, racism, environmental
       degradation, sexism, and homophobia?
    Do you agree that these factors impact the ability of women to control what
       happens to our bodies? How? Can you think of examples?
    Use the poster board to draw or describe your answers. Prepare to report
       back to the entire group.
                         Small Group Discussion

                                   Statement 3
    The emotional, sexual, and psychological
 stereotyping of females begins when the doctor
                says, "It's a girl."
     (From Shirley Chisholm, first African American woman elected to Congress)

Instructions:
    Read the statement. What is it saying?
    Can you break down the following terms: emotional, sexual, psychological,
       and stereotyping?
    Do you agree that females face stereotyping from the day they are born?
       How? Can you think of examples?
    Use the poster board to draw or describe your answers. Prepare to report
       back to the entire group.



                         Small Group Discussion

                                   Statement 4
 All females are socialized by sexist thinking to
    believe that our value rests solely on our
appearance and whether or not we are perceived
      to be good looking, especially by men.
            (Adapted from bell hooks, Black feminist educator and activist)

Instructions:
    Read the statement. What is it saying?
    Can you break down the following terms: socialized by sexist thinking?
    Do you agree that females are taught to believe their value is based on their
       looks and what men think of them? How? Can you think of examples?
    Use the poster board to draw or describe your answers. Prepare to report
       back to the entire group.
                             Small Group Discussion

                                        Statement 5
  The only real unity between men and women is
the unity forged in the course of struggle against
 their oppression. And it is by supporting, rather
than opposing, the struggles of women, that men
         and women can genuinely unite.
                    (Adapted from Mirta Vidal, Chicana feminist activist)

Instructions:
    Read the statement. What is it saying?
    Can you break down the following terms: oppression, unity, and struggle?
    Do you agree that in order for men and women to unite, men must support
       the struggles of women? Why? Can you think of examples?
Use the poster board to draw or describe your answers. Prepare to report back to the entire group.
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       PREHISTORY: Among gatherers and hunters and other
     early societies, various methods existed to limit the numbers
         of births and children. Women in many societies used
        various plants and herbs as contraceptives or to induce
      abortions. (Bororo women in Brazil used a plant to make
     them sterile. Women in Egypt used a vaginal sponge, dipped
               in honey, to reduce the mobility of sperm.)



                                       1800's: Slave women used
                                       African folk knowledge about
          QuickTime™ and a
                                       contraception and abortion as
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   are needed to see this pic ture.    forms of resistance to prevent
                                       slave owners from profiting
                                       and selling their offspring.
1873: Dr. Edward Hammond Clarke
publishes his influential
Sex in Education, which
argues that education is                           QuickTime™ and a
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harmful to women
because mental activity
draws blood from the
reproductive organs.


1882: Chinese Exclusion Act is the first law to
exclude a specific ethnicity from immigrating to
                                      the US. During this
                                      period very few
                                      women were allowed
           QuickTime™ a nd a          into the country and
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     are need ed to see this picture. only women who were
                                      tricked, kidnapped or
                                      smuggled came to the
                                      US.
                                                    1930's: During this period,
                                                    the US created populations
                                                    control programs –
                       QuickTime™ and a
                                                    sterilizations in Puerto Rico
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                 are neede d to see this picture.   and in the US targeting
                                                    Native Americans and
                                                    African American women.
                                                    Most were performed
                                                    without full consent.




                                      1955: Rosa Parks' arrest for
                                      refusing to give up her seat on a
                                      bus to a white man sparks the
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                                      Montgomery, Alabama Bus
                                      Boycott. African American
                                      women, the systems’ main
                                      users, will support the boycott
                                      for more than a year.
 1970: Labor
 organizer Dolores
 Huerta becomes                                              QuickTime™ and a
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 vice president of the
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 United Farm
 Workers.



                                        1973: The US Supreme
                                        Court rules in Roe v.
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  are ne ede d to see thi s pi cture.   Wade that a woman
                                        has a constitutional
                                        right to abortion.
                                     1980s-1990s: During this
                                     period Asian / Pacific
                                     Islander women formed
                                     organizations to address
                                     their specific
         QuickTime™ and a
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   are needed to see this picture.
                                     issues. At the same time,
                                     Latinas across the
                                     country formed
                                     organizations to address
                                     specific Latino health
                                     issues.



1989: In Webster v. Reproductive
Health Services, the
US Supreme Court
upholds laws
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limiting a woman’s
right to abortion.

				
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