There are six proposed constitutional amendments on the Florida ballot, but Amendment 6 has the campus buzzing.
Every person, voting or not, is preparing for changes in government on a local, state and national level.
Vote NO on Amendment 6 is a statewide coalition committed to keeping Florida’s politicians from interfering in women’s health care decisions. According to the coalition’s official website, votenoon6.com, Amendment 6, which could ban health insurance companies from covering abortions, contraceptives and other procedures, allows state politicians to come between women and their doctors.
The Feminist Majority Foundation has a program that allows national charters and affiliate groups organize year-round to make campuses more aware of women’s issues. Francesca Witcher, the national campus organizer for FMF, is working on the “Vote No on 6” campaign in Florida, specifically the North Florida area. She said there’s a campaign presence at Florida A&M, Florida State University, the University of Florida, and soon, the University of North Florida.
“The reason we are encouraging students to vote no is because this amendment is very dangerous and basically allows for politicians to interfere with women’s health and a woman’s right to choose,” Witcher said.
FMF is focusing on a FAMU campaign called “Get Out Her Vote,” a grassroots campaign on initiatives that affect reproductive choice. Mierel Joseph, a political science student from Ft. Lauderdale, and Stephanie McMillon, a public relations student from Tallahassee, are FAMU’s student organizers for “Vote No on 6.”
They are responsible for organizing and mobilizing students to vote against the proposal. Joseph and McMillon said the amendment is vague and the language is complicated to confuse voters.
“The amendment is set up so the choice of whether that woman should or should not get an abortion is left in governments’ hands,” Witcher said. She also said women could die if their health decisions are left to the government.
McMillon said many women could die if the amendment is added to Florida’s constitution and that people should remember there are no laws to “tie down” men’s reproductive rights.
“It’s about protecting health care rights, equal rights, and choice,” she said.