Em-URGE-ing Voices

Alumni Spotlight: Kelly Baden

School, Grad year, major The College of New Jersey, 2001, Political Science and Women’s and Gender Studies How were you involved with URGE? In 1999, I heard about the Gloria Steinem Leadership Institute and knew I had to apply. I was accepted and I remember it vividly – the trainings, the people I met, the way I felt. My participation in GSLI was a huge part in me seeking out an opportunity to join the URGE board in 2014. What do you do now and how do you bring a reproductive justice frame to the work you do? I work as the Director of State Advocacy at the Center for Reproductive Rights, where I oversee an amazing team of people as we track, analyze and fight against state abortion restrictions… Read more »

2016 Generation 2 Generation Awards and Celebration

URGE is ready to celebrate with advocates and friends from the reproductive justice movement at the Generation 2 Generation Celebration. Last year’s party was truly amazing, and we think we’ll outdo ourselves in 2016. Come celebrate all the power reproductive justice advocates have built this year, while enjoying delicious food, an open bar, a performance by Chocolate City Burlesque, mixes by DJ M.O., and a night of dancing on June 10 at the Washington Court Hotel.  Get your tickets now! Congratulations to our inspiring 2016 awardees. We’re honoring activists who are changing their communities and our country with the power of grassroots campaigns, social media, and advocacy education. Check out this year’s newest crop of social justice advocates and get inspired, too! 2016 G2G Winners The Steinem-Waters Legacy Award –… Read more »

A Wrap-up of 2016’s Advocacy Days

In four states, our students from over 20 universities advocated in support of and against bills directly related to their reproductive freedom, and the freedom of others. Over the last month, they dedicated themselves to using their most powerful assets as a voting class: their voice and their presence at state capitols. In Alabama, students advocated to overturn a legal mandate that currently prohibits discussion of LGBTQ relationships in a positive way in the classroom, and requires teachers to stigmatize and shame their students. They worked side by side with community supporters from Alabama Alliance for Healthy Youth to ask legislators to repeal the mandate and allow for more inclusive and comprehensive sex education in Alabama’s schools. Georgia student advocates  took to their state capitol to rally against the use of religion… Read more »

LIVESTREAM: We’re Taking a Stand for Abortion Access

It’s finally time. The amicus briefs have been submitted; abortion providers and clinic patients from all over the country have spoken; lawyers, mothers, and students alike have shared their relief and gratitude. Now, it’s time for all of us to stand up for abortion access in Texas and beyond as oral arguments for Whole Women’s Health v. Hellerstedt start at the Supreme Court of the United States. If you’re in Washington, DC we encourage you to make your presence known, and rally with us and thousands of supporters on the steps of the Supreme Court from 8a-12p on March 2. If you are unable to attend or don’t live nearby, catch all the action -including URGE student speakers – on the live stream here. Follow @urge_org and #StopTheSham on Twitter for… Read more »

Alumni Spotlight: Natasha Bailey

School, Grad year, major Kansas State University, May 2015, Family Studies and Human Services/Women’s Studies/Pre-Law Declared How were you involved with URGE? I was the chapter leader for URGE while I attended Kansas State University. Upon graduation, I was the conference assistant for the National Membership conference in 2015 and acted as an URGE representative for the All Above All Advocacy Day to gain legislative support for the Each Woman Act. What do you do now and how have you brought a reproductive justice frame to the work you do? I currently do technical support for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This role is pretty basic and I am mostly removed from the actual organization outside of things that involve technical troubleshooting. However I stay informed regarding issues… Read more »

You Are a Gift

2015… What a year! While it’s a bit of a stretch to feel jolly this holiday season, I am definitely full of hope. Witnessing the vigor of individuals and organizations across the country fighting for justice has helped ease my mind in a year filled with displays of violence and hate. This growth of collective action and positive energy couldn’t have happened without you and your support. As we end the year, I want to thank each and every one of you for your contribution to the progressive victories of this year, and to the fights we will continue in 2016. This year, Fight for 15 waged war on corporate greed, demanding better treatment for the millions of people who work hard to care for their families. Activists worked to restore… Read more »

Alumni Spotlight: Ryan Wenstrup-Moore

School, grad year, major University of Cincinnati, 2002, Women’s Studies University of Strathclyde, 2006, Social Research I was the first ever graduate with a BA in WSTU from UC! How were you involved with URGE? I attended the Gloria Steinem Leadership Institute in the 2002 and just fell in love with the infectious activism and work that then Choice USA did. I then was a Fundraising Intern over the summer of 2003 in the DC office. What do you do now and how have you brought a reproductive justice frame to the work you do? I’m the Senior Social Strategist and Community Manager at Barefoot Proximity in Cincinnati, Ohio. I just moved back to Cincinnati after living in Glasgow, Scotland for 11 years. While reproductive justice isn’t necessarily at the… Read more »

Call Congress and Demand Abortion Access for All!

Your representatives need to know that you support abortion access for all, no matter where they live, their age, what insurance they use, or how much money they make. Restricting abortion puts our lives, families and communities at risk. That’s why we are calling Congress in support of the EACH Woman Act today. This bill would lift bans on insurance coverage for abortion, meaning many more people would be able to afford an abortion when they need one. The EACH Woman Act ensures coverage for abortion for every person however much they earn, how they are insured, or where they live. On October 6th, make your voice heard – Call your Representative and ask them to co-sponsor the EACH Woman Act! Here is how you do it: 1. Find your… Read more »


The Senate will soon be voting on a ban on abortion after 20 weeks post fertilization. Restricting abortion puts our lives, families and communities at risk. We need leaders in Congress to promote legislation that helps us raise healthy families when we are ready, not legislate personal decisions. Make your voice heard – Call your Senators and ask them to vote NO on H.R. 36! Here is how you do it: 1. Find your Senators: http://www.contactingthecongress.org/  *Be sure you use the address where you are registered to vote! 2. Call the Congressional switchboard: 888-960-4826 and ask to speak to your Senator’s office. 3. Ask them to vote NO on H.R. 36. Here is a sample script you can use: Hello, my name is________ and I attend ______.  As a proud resident of the… Read more »

Alumni Spotlight: Amber Melvin

School: California State University, Long Beach Grad year: 2014 Major: Women’s Gender & Sexuality Studies How were you involved with URGE? I was a co-chair for the CSULB chapter and the State Leader for California. When I was a chapter leader, we worked with our campus health center to improve reproductive healthcare access for queer and transgender students. We also established Self Love Week, a full week of programming dedicated to self-care, body positivity, and sexual health. As a state leader, I participated in the California Coalition for Reproductive Freedom and worked withURGE field organizers to plan trainings and campaigns. What do you do now and how have you brought a reproductive justice frame to the work you do?  Right after I graduated, I started working with Reproductive Health Technologies Project in Washington, DC…. Read more »