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#Fight4HER campaign comes to campus

Abortion remains a topical conversation among college campuses

The national campaign #Fight4HER has increased its presence on the Auraria campus over the last few weeks. #Fight4HER was established in 2017 in response to President Trump’s Global Gag Rule, which would prevent non-governmental organizations (NGOs) from receiving US foreign aid if the organizations provide abortion services or information about the procedure itself.

#Fight4HER was established by Population Connection, an organization that advocates for global access to family planning services and reproductive health care.

The campaign’s presence at CU Denver demonstrates how the national abortion access debate has reached college campuses. 

Lindsay Apperson, the Field Coordinator for Population Connection, said the #Fight4HER campaign aims to “fight back against the Trump administration’s efforts to restrict reproductive rights and demand laws that respect, support, and empower people seeking reproductive health care here at home and around the world.”

According to a recent report from Time, health care workers claim that within the last year, Trump’s policy has already had a “disastrous effect… clinics are shutting down, unsafe abortions are predicted to rise sharply, and families are losing critical services across the globe.”

Sarah Snead, the Colorado Organizer for #Fight4HER, said the campaign is spreading awareness by “having big, visible events in the community,” “raising awareness in the media through news articles and letters to the editor,” and “collecting pledge to vote cards and petitions in support of the Global HER Act.”

While Population Connection mostly focuses on international issues, Apperson added, “Everyone deserves access to affordable and comprehensive reproductive healthcare regardless of where they live.”

Snead said it’s important for #Fight4HER to have a presence on college campuses. “We know young people care about reproductive rights, and we know they sometimes need a little push to get out and vote and be politically active,” Snead said.

#Fight4HER is actively campaigning across Colorado as well as in Arizona, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. “The people of Colorado, along with the other states we work in, have a lot of political power to create change,” Apperson said. These states are notably “swing states” that receive a lot of national attention during election years.

One of #Fight4HER’s goals is helping to elect political candidates who support increased access to reproductive health care worldwide. In Colorado, the organization campaigned for Jason Crow, the Democratic candidate who won the election over Republican incumbent Mike Coffman in congressional district six. 

Meanwhile, Students for Life, an organization that aims to abolish abortion, has over 1,200 groups on high school and college campuses nationwide, including over 30 in Colorado.

Matt Lamb, the Director of Communications for Students for Life, said the organization uses a variety of methods to engage with students on campus, including “tabling… hosting speakers, and setting up standing displays such as a Cemetery of the Innocents.” 

“Some of the topics we regularly talk with students about include: defunding Planned Parenthood, ending late-term abortions, and creating a culture on campus that is welcoming to pregnant and parenting students, staff, and faculty,” Lamb said.

When asked about potential conflicts with pro-choice student groups, Lamb said, “We are always glad to engage in debate with anyone, and we look forward to any opportunity to talk to people about why it’s wrong to end innocent human life through the violent act of abortion.”

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