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LAW Reproductive Justice: Law, Policy and Advocacy

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LAW 490

Reproductive Justice: Law, Policy and Advocacy

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Recommended for route(s):

[ Academia ] [ Litigation ] [ Regulatory & Policy ] Employment Law: Employee Benefits

Why it is relevant for ...

[ Academia ] [ Litigation ] [ Regulatory & Policy ] as a Related Elective for those interested in Constitutional Law : Whether your focus is civil rights and gender discrimination or privacy and religious liberty, this course will be a useful exploration of policy and advocacy choices. It offers an exploration of constitutional principles surrounding childbearing, and considers different strategies for advancing women's reproductive choices. An understanding of permissible constraints on these choices is also important for those who expect to advise health care providers or employers who offer flexible time and health care benefits to employees. Similarly, if you expect to advise any other clients with the potential responsibility to provide health care to those within their custody, such as schools, prisons or the military, an understanding of permissible constraints on women's reproductive choices will be useful.

General course Description:

This course offers an opportunity to explore constitutional doctrines on childbearing and to consider contemporary strategies for advancing reproductive justice. We will examine federal court decisions defining reproductive rights, including cases involving conflicts between reproductive freedom, religious liberty and freedom of speech. We will consider the limits of federal constitutional protection for vulnerable women's reproductive choices (prisoners, teenagers, women who need public assistance and soldiers). In light of those limitations, we will consider alternative strategies to strengthen reproductive freedom: state constitutional litigation, legislation, administrative advocacy, communications, organizing and initiative campaigns. Each of these will be paired with a current reproductive rights controversy, such as the federal ban on abortion in military facilities, insurance coverage of contraception, teenagers access to confidential reproductive health care, shackling of pregnant inmates and abstinence-only sex education. Reproductive justice advocates, including litigators, communications experts and empirical health researchers will make guest appearances. The success of this course depends on lively class participation. Students will write a short piece on each week's topic using a different advocacy style (such as a legislative fact sheet, blog post, initiative ballot argument, op-ed article) and will make oral presentations in class.

Course Style: A Substantive/ Perspective course looks at law from an external or non-traditional standpoint.

Course Frequency: Offered once a year

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