NEW YORK (Jun. 16)
The Pioneer Women/Na’amat the women’s Labor Zionist Organization, said today it would redouble its efforts to protect women’s freedom of choice in reproduction in both the United States and Israel.
Phyllis Frank, of Washington, vice president of the 50,000 member organization, made that statement in hailing yesterday’s ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court striking down a series of local legislative restrictions on access to abortions. “The Supreme Court’s decision is a victory for all American women, for the cause of freedom and for the principle of church-state separation,” Frank said. “We welcome the ruling as a significant advance for the American idea of freedom of choice.”
The Pioneer Women’s sister organization in Israel, Na’amat/Pioneer Women, played a key role in the defeat of recent proposals in the Knesset that would have further restricted the already limited right to abortion in Israel, Frank said. Those proposals, branded a “public scandal” by Masha Lubelsky, secretary-general of the 750,000-member Na-amat, included charging women who have unauthorized abortions with criminal action, making them liable to punishment and permitting women over 40 to have abortions only when the embryo is found defective.
Frank said that Pioneer Women/Na’amat in the U.S. would continue to “vigilantly monitor and vigorously oppose any drive to by-pass the high court’s decision through a Constitutional amendment or other effort to erode the right a woman to have an abortion.”