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Wednesday, May 22, 2024 — Houston, TX

Students found pro-choice group

By Mengjia Liu     9/1/15 2:26pm

Pro-Choice Rice, a new advocacy group and the first college chapter of NARAL Pro-Choice Texas, aims to bring awareness of women’s reproductive rights to the Rice University campus and the surrounding community.

Founded by Maddy Adams, Olivia Lee and Olivia Lammers, the group intends to be more politically active in the future with increased membership and funding but will primarily focus on educating the community for now, according to Lee, a McMurtry College junior.

“Our goal is to galvanize a pro-choice movement on campus so that we can engage in advocacy and activism for pro-choice causes and also to spread awareness and educate,” Lee said.

Lammers, a McMurtry College senior, said one reason the group formed was to address the common misconceptions about being pro-choice and to inform people about their rights.

“We live in a state where there is a lack of accurate information about abortions or other women's reproductive health services,” Lammers said. “A lot of Texas women aren't aware that our reproductive rights are in some ways limited compared to women elsewhere, and I think it's something that publicly needs to change.”

According to Adams, a McMurtry College junior, Texas legislation has significantly limited access to reproductive health services.

There's only eight active clinics in the entire state of Texas, all of which are threatened by legislation every day,” Adams said. “Women in states like Texas, which don't allow self-administered abortions in the form of pills, are prosecuted for utilizing those services.”

Lee said she hopes Pro-Choice Rice will also increase activism on campus.

“Our campus isn't very political in general and lacks a sort of activist nature that other college campuses do have, so I think we're hoping to add to a broader political engagement on campus,” Lee said.

The upcoming events, which will be open to everyone, will include a broad range of speakers who will offer information and provide different perspectives, Lammers said.

“We plan on bringing in speakers from the outside community to host talks on campus that are related to being pro-choice and to women's reproductive health,” Lammers said. “We plan on reaching out to professors or health professionals on campus, and we might host debates or even invite members of the religious community.”

Lee encouraged everyone, regardless of gender, to get informed about the pro-choice movement.

Pro-choice isn't just for women,” Lee said. “We want to provide information to everyone. Women's health and access to reproductive health is a public good for society, so it is important for everyone to get involved.”

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