Summer Intern Series: Sex & Politics in the Capital City

By Brooke

This summer, Advocates for Youth, the Center for Health and Gender Equity, Choice USA and the Sexuality Information and Education Council of the US (SIECUS), along with partner organizations are holding a series of lunchtime talks for DC-area interns working for organizations with similar goals.

The first in this series of lunches was called, “Reproductive Justice 101 & Effective Reproductive Justice Activism on Campus” and NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia interns Marissa and I were on the scene to find out more.

Representatives from Choice USA led the first segment, in which we discussed the fundamental importance of the term “reproductive justice.” Reproductive justice is more than just the right to choose, it is having the ability to choose without economic, social, racial, or geographic “oppressions.” It also encompasses the universal right of access to accurate and comprehensive sex education.

Next, representatives from The Feminist Majority Foundation gave us some tips on how to further causes related to reproductive justice on campuses. They showed us how a small group can eventually create a larger movement with the right type of strategy. Grassroots activism gives supporters the opportunity to feel a part of the movement and eventually spark change in their communities. At the grassroots level, it’s best to sponsor campus-wide events that could attract people who would not normally come to one of your meetings. This can be done by focusing on a current policy issue or inviting a well-known speaker to lead a discussion on your topic.

NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia Foundation has been active on campuses throughout Virginia, raising awareness about the shaming and harassment of crisis pregnancy centers. Our Support Without Shame campaign has been to University of Mary Washington, James Madison University, University of Virginia and Virginia Tech. If you want to help support reproductive justice on your campus, we are looking for leaders in your school community. Please contact Joey for more information on applying.

And if you’re in the Richmond area, be sure to RSVP for our screening of “12th  & Delaware” this Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. on the VCU campus.

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