<\body> Stories in America: Support Pro-Choice SD Woman Running for Senator

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Support Pro-Choice SD Woman Running for Senator

Charon Asetoyer, executive director of the Native Women's Health Education Resource Center, recently announced her candidacy for a seat on the State Senate of South Dakota's 21st District. Asetoyer's decision to run came after the state's 2006 legislative session:
"The nine bills pertaining to personal health that the legislature attempted to pass during this legislative session were some of the most restrictive and oppressive bills that South Dakota has ever seen. These bills attack the rights of women and families to make private, personal decisions about their health. It is time to stand up and fight to eliminate the diminishment of our personal rights," said Asetoyer. "The abortion ban is only one example of the direction current lawmakers are taking to control the rights of families to make decisions and maintain personal control over private health issues."

Asetoyer is concerned that this is only the beginning of a long line of bills that will erode individual constitutional rights. Native American women are raped and sexually assaulted 3.5 times more than any other race in this country and overall, SD has one of the highest rates of rape in the US. Because violence against women is a primary health, safety and civil rights
issue for the women and children of SD it is of utmost importance to protect women and their families, not to take steps to restrict choices and limit access to health care.

"What South Dakota needs are bills that build economic stability, including environmentally sound energy policies, health insurance coverage for all, ensure fair living wages, guaranteed paid maternity leave, accessible child care and provide statewide quality public education. Addressing and eliminating poverty in this state should be our number one priority. Having counties that are continually identified as the poorest in the nation are obvious indicators as to where our priorities should lie," said Asetoyer.
Because South Dakota is a small state, Asetoyer can win with a lot less money than it takes to win in big states, so a small contribution will go a long way. Send contributions to:

Campaign for Change/Asetoyer
P.O. Box 472
Lake Andes, SD 57356


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