News In Brief

NOW picketers attack Reagan on women's issues

Members of the National Organization for Women (NOW) took to the streets in picket lines and protests in cities across the country yesterday to express opposition to the expected nomination of President Ronald Reagan at the Republican convention in Dallas.

The demonstrations, planned in 50 locations nationally, were intended to ''focus public attention on the disastrous impact Reagan's policies have had on women's lives,'' according to NOW officials.

The protests come at a time when the Republican Party is making a conscious effort at the Dallas convention to highlight the Reagan administration's position on women's issues.

In Boston, an estimated 200 demonstrators formed a noontime picket lin outside the Reagan-Bush state campaign headquarters.

Boston Now president Janet Ferone said she was ''impressed'' with the size of the turnout. ''It really shows that this is something that people are passionate about and that they are committed to defeating Ronald Reagan.''

Each of the protests was organized locally, but they were loosely structured within a national NOW effort known as ''the Women's Truth Squad on Reagan.'' ''Our goal is to get Reagan's terrible record on women's issues known to the public,'' says Jennifer Brown, executive director of the New York chapter of NOW.

Among the group's concerns are the President's opposition to the Equal Rights Amendment, his position on abortion, and the administration's cuts in social programs, which they say have accelerated the ''feminization of poverty'' in families with female heads of households.

Republican officials say Mr. Reagan's economic policies have eased inflation and helped reduce the unemployment rate for adult women to 7.1 percent. They say that on the ERA the President supports the ''E'' and the ''R'' but not the ''A.'' They add that Reagan has appointed three women to his Cabinet and the first woman to serve on the US Supreme Court.

''A few highly publicized top-level appointments cannot undo the damage done to the lives of millions of women by regressive Reagan policies, programs, and budgets,'' a NOW flier says.

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