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Student Group holds its third Womyn's Issues Now Conference

The third Womyn’s Issues Now Conference attracted around 50 people to the Student Union on Saturday. 

The conference aims to gather people together to learn more about the framework and issues surrounding reproductive justice.

It is organized by Students United for Reproductive Justice, or SURJ, which was created in 2012. 

Sophomore Ben Lineberger, a member of SURJ, said he got involved in the organization last year. 

“I thought it was one of the most progressive groups on campus,” Lineberger said of his decision to join.

Cara Schumann, co-president of SURJ, said 120 people registered for the conference online, but 50 to 60 actually attended — about the same as the turnout in 2014.

“We had better registration than we’ve ever had," said Schumann. 

She focused on the meaning of the conference, emphasizing the need for women to become more aware of the battle.

“I think it’s really important to bring people that are young together and to have organizations tell them what (kind of) work they do, how they can get involved and what living this kind of experience looks like," she said.

SURJ members began preparing for the conference during the summer.

The conference included a keynote presentation given by Coya White Hat-Artichoker as well as panels on healthcare, politics, anti-violence and student activism. 

Senior Anondo Banerjee said it was his second time attending the conference. 

“I came last year,” Banerjee said. “I’m already involved in this kind of work on campus. Also, I like  meeting people.”

Students from other colleges also came to UNC for the conference.

Kayla Miron, a freshman from Vassar College, said she has a couple of friends who are involved in SURJ, so she heard about this event from them. 

“I’m really looking forward to hearing from students on the panels about what they’re doing on campus, like their outlook, because I think that’s most relatable to me,” Miron said.

“I want to know how to get involved and how to make a difference, and I think it’s really inspiring looking at people my age talking about the amazing ways they’re doing their work.”

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