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Arizona Pro-Choice Advocates to Join National Concert Event Saturday

Pro-choice groups are holding a dance party and mixer on Saturday to promote better access to abortion. (Enterline Design Services/iStockphoto)
Pro-choice groups are holding a dance party and mixer on Saturday to promote better access to abortion. (Enterline Design Services/iStockphoto)
September 6, 2016

PHOENIX - This Saturday, pro-choice advocates are inviting the public to a free dance party and mini-rally in Phoenix. The event is sponsored by Planned Parenthood, the ACLU and the National Asian Pacific American Women's Foundation Arizona. They will be live-streaming a show from Cleveland called All Access, featuring performances by the singer Sia and comedians Leslie Jones from Saturday Night Live and Jessica Williams from Comedy Central.

Companion events are being held in Atlanta, Chicago, Miami and Philadelphia.

Mathilde Rispoli, a 16-year-old youth organizer for Planned Parenthood Arizona, said it's a fun way for politically-minded millennials to get involved in the cause.

"Eighty-eight percent of counties have no abortion providers," she said. "And though 7 in 10 Americans support abortion rights, it's very clear that we have an access problem. So this event is all about access to abortion."

According to the Guttmacher Institute, as of 2011, Arizona had 17 abortion providers, 15 of which are clinics. And two-thirds of Arizona counties have no clinic. The abortion rate is 12.7 per 1,000 women of reproductive age, which is lower than the national average.

The event runs from 5:00-8:00 pm at Club DWNTWN in Phoenix. Free registration for the event can be found here.

Tayler Tucker, communications specialist with Planned Parenthood Arizona, said the state Legislature has been trying to restrict access to abortion for years.

"Probably since 2010, every single session has tried to pass some sort of bill regarding abortion, limiting it, and not using medical-based evidence to create smart policy," she said.

Tucker added that this event is a precursor to a week of action coming in mid-September to rally support in Congress for revoking the Hyde Amendment, which prevents Medicaid from covering abortion for low-income women.

Suzanne Potter, Public News Service - AZ