As we get closer to November 6th, we’re all hearing about how important it is to get out and vote in the mid-term elections. While they may not seem as sexy as a presidential election, mid-terms are incredibly important because they determine who will remain or change in Congress (a.k.a. the Senate and the House of Representatives — a.k.a. the folks who’re always making and voting on laws).
Now, you might be wondering, “What does this mid-term election have to do with birth, babies, or any part of reproductive health?” In this incredible Instagram Story series, @florafaunadoula answers that question.
Did you know… While childbirth is a “qualifying” life event that enables people to access health insurance after the general open enrollment period has passed, pregnancy is not….
So what do we do with this information?
Learn your representatives stances on reproductive health policy. Whether you’re specifically concerned about breast cancer, prenatal care, sex education, Medicaid, abortion, or something else beneath the wide umbrella of reproductive health — use apps and websites like Countable, VoteSpotter, and On The Issues to find out what your local and state representatives and/or the upcoming candidates stand for.
Talk to your representatives about what you want to see change. You can write, you can call, you can even meet them in person. It just takes a first step. Your perspective and your stories — they are meaningful and they can make a difference. If you feel strongly enough to share an impassioned post on social media, consider popping that in an email and sending it to your rep, too. After all, who on your Facebook timeline is drafting bills and voting in laws? That said…
Dialogue and connect with others in your community — those you agree with and those you don’t. Obviously, we don’t all feel the same about these issue. Rather than let that drive a wedge between us, let’s create spaces where we can tell our stories and share where our individual perspectives are coming from. In the end, we may still not agree, but we’ll know more than we knew before, and maybe we can find some unique ways to support each others’ wellbeing across the differences.
Vote. Of course, get out and vote. If you’re not sure where, type in your address at Vote411 to find out. There, you can even see what’s going to be on your ballot ahead of time. If you need a ride, there will be plenty of free ones available through Lyft, Uber, and more. And if anyone or anything gets in the way of your ability to vote, report it to the Department of Justice.