Ct NOW Chapter Applauds General Assembly Legislation Affecting Women

June 9, 2011
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The Connecticut Chapter of the National Organization for Women is celebrating the passage of landmark legislation that will benefit women across the state of Connecticut.

At the close of the legislative session Wednesday night, the General Assembly had enacted legislation promising significant positive change for women’s health, safety, and economic and legal status. Noteworthy bills signed into law this session include paid sick days, domestic violence legislation, and bills to mandate insurance coverage for breast MRIs as well as prevent discrimination on the basis of gender identity. In March, CT-NOW hosted a lobby day at the State Capitol to advocate on behalf of this legislation.

The bill to require that certain businesses provide their employees with paid sick days (SB 913) is a first-in-the-nation, truly progressive measure that will help women who, as the primary caregivers in most families, have been disproportionately affected.

The domestic violence legislation (HB 6629) makes multiple changes to the state’s response to domestic violence, including measures to strengthen access to restraining and protective orders, improve information sharing between state agencies, facilitate victims’ access to services, and provide law enforcement with better tools to protect communities.

SB 10, An Act Concerning Insurance Coverage for Breast Magnetic Resonance Imaging, requires certain health insurance policies to cover MRIs for women considered to be at risk for breast cancer.  HB 6599 explicitly prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender identity in the state of Connecticut.

CT-NOW President Jessica Fenner noted that Connecticut is a leader on women’s rights at a time when those rights are threatened at the national level. “While funding for reproductive and other essential health services for women continue to be under attack in Washington, the state of Connecticut recognizes the importance of enabling women to provide for their families, improving women’s health and strengthening communities. We are proud to live in this state.”

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