|Emma Stitt far left, Jess Reznicek far right|
It's been five days since a group of women entered Senator Josh McKoon's office to share their concerns with sb129(Religious Freedom Restoration Act). The women were very quickly told that they would be arrested if they didn't leave the office despite the fact that it was during business hours. The women stated, "We will wait until the Senator is able to meet with us." They were quickly arrested.
|Emma and Jess wait to board prisoner transport|
Jess Reznicek and Emma Stitt felt so strongly about the potential harm of RFRA, they have refused to post bond and will remain in jail until the RFRA bill is defeated, or for the duration of their sentence, which has yet to be determined by the courts. Their refusal to use their privilege to get out of jail is further demonstration of their desire to remain in solidarity with the women of Georgia who are not able to post bond, as well as all of the women of Georgia who will be adversely impacted by RFRA. As Emma and Jess are led by their faith to wait in a jail cell the debate around RFRA continues. Over the course of the last week Senator McKoon has refused to allow an amendment to the bill which would stop it from being used to discriminate against the LGBTQ community and women stating, "That amendment would completely undercut the purpose of the bill."
Emma Stitt, 29, has been with the Open Door Community in Atlanta for four years, where she leads weekly soup kitchens and showers for the homeless, ministers to prisoners throughout Georgia, and participates in non-violent street actions to demand justice for the poor, imprisoned and marginalized.
Jess Reznicek, 34, is a member of the Des Moines Catholic Worker community in Iowa, which is committed to a simple, nonviolent lifestyle as they work among the poor. Although Jess lives in Iowa, her passion for women’s reproductive rights transcends state lines and has led her to act in solidarity with Georgia women through this action against RFRA.