WELCOME to the second edition of NOW New Jersey’s monthly FEMINIST FRIDAY Newsletter! We are extremely thankful for the victory of President-Elect Joe Biden and Vice President Elect Kamala Harris. We look forward to the ending of our national nightmare on January 20, 2021. We are doubly thankful for all our NOW New Jersey members who worked hard to get Andy Kim, Tom Malinowski and Mikie Sherrill re-elected along with the Biden/Harris ticket. NOW we can Build Back Better.

The National NOW Board election online ballot submission deadline has been extended to November 30. We begin with a reminder to vote for NOW New Jersey endorsed candidate – Anjali Mehrotra for the NOW National Board of Directors. To learn more about Anjali, her candidacy and platform, please visit www.anjalimehrotra.com.

The Reproductive Freedom Act (S3030/A4848) is ground-breaking legislation that will protect the right to abortion care for everyone in New Jersey and expand access to critical reproductive health services, especially for historically marginalized communities. Take Action NOW to help us ensure the RFA is brought before the Senate Health Committee as soon as possible. We need you to call Senate President Steve Sweeney (856-251-9801, 856-339-0808) and Senator Vitale, Chair of the Senate Health Committee (732-855-7441) and ask them to put the RFA on the committee schedule.

Sample Script: Hi. My name is X and I live in X. I am calling today to urge [Senate President Sweeney OR Senator Vitale] to move the Reproductive Freedom Act – Bill number S3030 – and ensure it is heard in the Health Committee as soon as possible. It is critical now more than ever that we protect and expand access to reproductive health care, including abortion in New Jersey. Thank you.

You can click below to take additional action by telling YOUR legislators to pass the Reproductive Freedom Act in New Jersey!

Take Action NOW!


The 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence is an annual international campaign calling for the elimination of violence against women and girls marked globally by the private sector, NGOs, the UN, and people from all over the world. This year’s 16 Days of Activism is more urgent than ever, as we have seen an alarming rise of violence against women, especially domestic violence, during the COVID-19 lockdowns. We will be posting UN Women’s #OrangetheWorld campaign to all our social media channels @NOWNewJersey.

The campaign started on November 25 (International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women) and runs through December 10 (Human Rights Day). The color orange unifies the large-scale social mobilization and symbolizes a brighter future, free of violence. Join the movement and take action by following these 10 ways you can help end violence against women, even during a pandemic!

legacyNOW  – NOW New Jersey’s collaborative digital celebration is now available on the coLAB Arts website. Since our last newsletter, three additional pieces highlighting the stories of longtime NOW-NJ members – Joanie Parks, Maretta Short, and Susan Waldman – have been released! The project includes five performances based on oral histories of second wave feminists recorded as part of our InterGenerational project. Many thanks to Joanie Parks for digging into her photo albums for the images presented in the slideshow.


NOW-NJ will commemorate the 48th Anniversary of the landmark Roe v. Wade on Jan 22 by publishing a New Jersey Feminist Power list! In the coming weeks, we will be opening up nominations for feminists you believe deserve recognition. We will also be offering the opportunity to sponsor a page in the book in support of your favorite changemaker. Keep a look out in your inbox or stay up to date through our website, nownj.org.


Where’s the parity? – The committee members for the 2021 legislative redistricting process were formally announced last week. Back in May, NOW New Jersey issued a press release calling for gender parity on the apportionment commission. However, with only two women present out of eleven members appointed, the commission is a far cry from gender parity and actually represents a regression from the 2011 commission in terms of racial and gender diversity. Activists throughout New Jersey have denounced the racial and gender imbalance on the commission. Still, we applaud the appointment of NOW-NJ Administrative Vice President, Saily Avelenda as Chief of Staff to the Democratic members of the Commission and share her sentiments, “We recognize that the apportionment process isn’t perfect, but we are confident that the final result will be a map that strengthens representation of diverse communities and supports our shared goal of advancing policies that benefit working families and the middle class.” Saily will be the first Latina in state history to serve in that position.

Unpack the bench – Back in June 2019, NOW New Jersey had called for the removal of Judge Marcia Silva from the bench after she refused to allow the sixteen-year-old rapist of a twelve-year-old to be tried as an adult. Feeling strongly that we need representation in our elected officials and judiciary that will uphold the same values as NOW and argue on the right side of justice and the rights of survivors of sexual violence, NOW-NJ applauds Gov Murphy’s decision to deny tenure to Judge Marcia Silva.

Honoring a Feminist Icon – The League of Women Voters of New Jersey held a rally commemorating RBG’s legacy on October 18 in Plainfield. Action VP Danni Newbury spoke at the rally, “A vote is not a valentine. You aren’t confessing your love for the candidate. It’s a chess move. And if there’s anything that I’ve learned from Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s legacy, it’s that chess moves matter.” Danni is Coordinator of the Union County Office of LGBTQ Affairs, the only government office in the state of New Jersey serving the LGBTQ community.


The Historic Barriers Kamala Harris Overcame to Become the First Female, First Black and First Asian American Vice President-Elect TIME

Women of Both Parties Must Seize the Momentum Debbie Walsh, Director of CAWP in The Hill

What if Instead of Calling People Out, We Called Them In? Prof. Loretta J. Ross is combating cancel culture with a popular class at Smith College New York Times

Tackling ‘Period Poverty,’ Scotland Is 1st Nation to Make Sanitary Products Free — New York Times


In Her Words: Where Women Rule the Headlines is a twice-weekly newsletter by the New York Times on women, gender and society. This week the newsletter highlighted President-elect Biden’s campaign pledge to put together a diverse administration that “looks like” the country. Of Mr. Biden’s six picks announced on Tuesday, two are women and two are people of color. In the coming days, Mr. Biden is expected to make some more groundbreaking nominations to key positions that could make his cabinet one of the most diverse in history. Outside Mr. Biden’s cabinet picks, the majority of his transition team and more than half of the members of his 14-member senior White House staff are female.

Sign up to receive the newsletter here or follow @nytgender on Instagram.


Linda Weber, Legislative Vice President

What made you join NOW? I ran for office in 2017 and was shocked by the statistics around the low number of women in office. After my unsuccessful campaign for the House, I felt that I absolutely had to get involved. I have always looked up to the founders of NOW and share their vision – which we should have attained by 2020! I raised my sons as feminists (and married a feminist guy) so I feel a commitment to work towards true equality and equity for them and my (hopefully…someday) grandkids.

What feminist issue would you like to see addressed that is not getting enough attention? The burden of sexism on health and happiness, particularly on low income women and women of disadvantaged communities. Income inequality has kept millions of women in poverty, and hence, their children.

What’s your new quarantine hobby? Making masks! I’ve made almost 800 – many for friends and family, but also hundreds for a community soup kitchen, food bank, and outreach center in Morristown that is working on solutions to the problems of homelessness, hunger and poverty. Initially I started making them for kids who couldn’t get masks that fit, but now I’m making them for folks of all ages. Now working on winter holiday masks!

Support the fight for equity in New Jersey!


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New Jersey NOW
Our purpose is to act through intersectional, anti-racist grassroots activism to promote
feminist ideals, lead societal change, eliminate discrimination, and achieve and protect
the equal rights of all women and girls in all aspects of social, political, and economic life.

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