For Immediate Release

January 4, 2006

Students from 35 States Come to Washington, DC to Stop Alito

Students from 35 States Come to Washington, DC to Stop Alito Feminist Majority Foundation Announces Freedom Winter ’06

WASHINGTON, DC – Today the Feminist Majority Foundation, with the National Organization for Women and the National Congress of Black Women, announced Freedom Winter ’06, part of a joint national campaign to block the confirmation of Samuel Alito because of the serious threat he poses to the future of women’s rights and civil rights.

“Make no mistake about it: Alito is no Sandra Day O’Connor,” said Eleanor Smeal, president of the Feminist Majority Foundation (FMF). “As the pioneering woman on the Supreme Court, Justice O’Conner voted to preserve many of the most significant legal protections for women. She has been the fifth vote to preserve affirmative action and the right to abortion. The appointment of a reactionary judge like Samuel Alito to O’Connor’s seat will shift the balance of the Court to the detriment of women’s rights and civil rights. It could reverse decades of progress for women.”

In the spirit of Freedom Summer 1964, when thousands of students from across the country traveled to Mississippi and other Southern states to register and mobilize African American voters in unprecedented numbers, Freedom Winter ’06 is mobilizing students to save women’s rights and civil rights.

“Freedom Winter ’06 will spread the word to people across the country who care about women’s rights and civil rights, especially young people, that if Alito is confirmed, we could lose fundamental women’s rights and civil rights protections,” said Crystal Lander, FMF Campus Program Director. “If Alito is confirmed, women could face a future without access to legal abortion, and a future without important workplace discrimination protection.”

“Young people are coming to Washington, DC from colleges and universities in 35 states, giving up their winter vacations to help block Alito’s confirmation because they don’t want to lose rights necessary for modern life,” said Smeal.

Alito is on the record stating that the Constitution does not protect the right to abortion and helped craft the legal strategy designed to first chip away and then overturn Roe v. Wade. Alito’s record as a judge makes clear that if confirmed he will vote to limit or erode important federal laws that protect women at work, and that he would make it more difficult to obtain jury trials in sex discrimination and race discrimination cases under Title VII.

“Young women are committed to defeating Alito because we have the most to lose if he is confirmed – Alito’s confirmation could delay progress for women and roll back the clock on women’s rights for generations to come,” said Lander.


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