The Reproductive Rights Task Force

The Reproductive Rights Task Force is the longest running task force within the Wisconsin Women’s Network.  It began in 1981 with these goals:

To protect the right to choice in WI by supporting legislation guaranteeing access to reproductive health care and education services and defeating legislation threatening this access
To provide services to the constituency to promote its effectiveness as a pro-choice advocate
To assess statewide resources for pro-choice support and strengthen them by inter-organizational and individual linkages for reinforcement

Throughout its history, the Task Force has been focused on promoting legislation that calls for fewer restrictions on access to abortions, family planning clinics, and contraceptives; ensuring that all Wisconsin schools provide comprehensive sex education to their students; and encouraging candidates on both a state and federal level that are pro-choice and pro-birth control.  Some of its greatest achievements in legislation include protecting the Family Planning Waiver, defeating the “Right to Life” bill, securing equal insurance coverage of birth control and other contraceptives, and finally securing the Compassionate Care for Rape Victims bill in 2008.  The Task Force has compiled dozens of fact sheets, brochures, and other publications in order to educate the public and legislators about reproductive rights, including the 1984 publication of the Abortion Rights Advocacy Handbook.  Because of the politically turbulent nature of reproductive rights issues, the Task Force continues its fight for abortion rights, family planning programs, comprehensive sexuality education and other such issues today.

The Reproductive Rights Task Force in 2010 worked on passage of the Healthy Youth Act, which requires schools that choose to teach sex education to do so in a responsible, comprehensive manner that includes information about abstinence and birth control to prevent teen pregnancies and STDs.