Vermont Press Releases

UNITE Women to rally at Statehouse on April 28


Contact: Erin Narey, VT State Liaison,
[email protected]

Sen. Bernie Sanders, Neko Case, & Anais Mitchell Join Madeleine Kunin at State House Rally
Governor Shumlin, unable to attend, will issue a statement

MONTPELIER – Senator Bernie Sanders and Vermont singer/songwriters Anais Mitchell and Neko Case will speak at UNITE Women VT’s Montpelier rally, Saturday 4/28 at the State House. The rally is part of a coordinated nationwide effort to protest legislation endangering the health and welfare of women, and to encourage communities to take action via voter registration, information campaigns, and legislative petitions.

In a statement issued last month regarding the Republican measure to let employers and insurers opt out of provisions in the health care law, Sanders said, “In Vermont and around the country, there is growing anger that member of Congress, mostly men, are trying to roll back the clock on women’s rights, in this case the right of women to receive contraceptive services through their insurance plans. This attack is grossly unfair, and I hope that men will stand with women in the fight to protect this very basic right.”

Other recent additions to the program are Vermont singer/songwriters, Neko Case and Anais Mitchell. Grammy-nominated singer/songwriter and Northeast Kingdom resident Neko Case will speak at the Montpelier rally before heading out on tour the following day. Former Montpelier resident and Middlebury College student Anais Mitchell, best known for recent folk opera Hadestown, will play music at the rally’s end. Case and Mitchell are joining another renowned Vermont singer, Tammy Fletcher, who will open. Fletcher was recently called “a true Vermont treasure” by former Governor Jim Douglas.

Governor Peter Shumlin will be unable to attend the rally, but has promised to issue a statement. The updated speaker list for the 4/28 rally is as follows:

Vermont’s rally will take place on the State House lawn in Montpelier on Saturday, 4/28, from 11:00 to 2:00.
Madeleine Kunin, former VT governor and author of The New Feminist Agenda
Senator Bernie Sanders
Tammy Fletcher, singer/songwriter and “Vermont’s Own Soul Queen” 
Cynthia Huntington, former Poet Laureate of New Hampshire, author of Heavenly Bodies
Rep. Jill Krowinski (Chittenden 3-3), Director of Planned Parenthood, Northern New England
Wanda Hines, Director of the Social Equity Investment Project 
Neko Case, singer/songwriter and two-time Grammy nominee
Karen Tronsgard-Scott, Director of the Vermont Network Against Domestic and Sexual Violence
Sarah Launderville, Director of Vermont Center for Independent Living
Diane Derby, Field Representative for Senator Patrick Leahy
Anais Mitchell, singer/songwriter, creator of folk rock opera, Hadestown

ABOUT UNITE Women: UNITE Women ( is a national grassroots organization founded in February 2012 to protect and advance women’s rights in all areas of women’s lives across our lifespan. Working with members in all 50 states, we identify our common concerns and develop action programs to address them, in partnership with other groups that share our mission and our vision of a better life for ourselves, our children and our grandchildren.

National Endorsers Of UNITE Women (to date) include
Coalition of Labor Union Women · CodePink · Coffee Party USA · Feminist Peace Network · Ihollaback
Katrina vanden Heuvel – Ed. & Publisher, The Nation · National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health
National League of Latin American Citizens · National Organization for Women
Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice

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  • abbey conway

    Bernie is absolutely shameless. There is NO WAR on women; what this ‘rally’ is really all about. Only the one made up in the minds of Democrats who are just trying to demonize Republicans. If Vermonters took the time to really pay attention to elections instead of voting according to sound bites, we would all be better off. The feminists are nothing but sheeple; they don’t think for themselves. Reject this foolish rally. It is NOT in your best interest and you would realize it if you paid attention to what is going on in the country.

  • Rickey Gard Diamond

    Abbey, it’s because women have been paying attention to a tidal wave of state legislation that targets women that this rally is happening. You ignore an entrenched and essentially outdated religiosity at your own peril, and so does the Republican right-wing, our own Taliban. You don’t mind being called a slut if you’re in favor of birth control and family planning?

    Right behind this wave of legislation is the economic status of women in the U.S., imperiled, along with motherhood.

  • Nanci Calderwood

    Abbey..I suggest you do not attend. Your comments are quite outrageous. What are you so afraid of?