Photo By Francesca Gariano

Clevelanders gather at the Wolstein Center for All Access 2016, which took place Sept. 5.

 

September 21, 2016

All Access 2016 brings abortion attention to CSU

Pop singer Sia, performing some of her biggest hits, headlined the night of entertainment when the Wolstein Center at Cleveland State University hosted All Access 2016 on Saturday, Sept. 10.

Cleveland hosted the main and largest event of All Access 2016, with other smaller ones taking place simultaneously in Atlanta, Chicago, Miami, and Philadelphia. With a live stream view of the event, fans all over the country could watch and participate.

Comedy Central's Jessica Williams, a former correspondent for "The Daily Show," served as emcee for the evening, sharing the message of the cause and introducing the performers and speakers.

Sia, under her famous wig and accompanied by her signature dancers, performed hits like “Chandelier” and “Cheap Thrills.” "Saturday Night Live" cast member, Leslie Jones, performed a stand-up set to raucous laughter and applause, relating a humorous anecdote about trying to sleep with Prince and about the modern perils of texting while dating.

Singer and dancer Teyana Taylor recreated her MTV Video Music Award performance of Kanye West's "Fade" and had the auditorium dancing in their seats, while Grammy-award winning singer Natalia Lafourcade sent a performance video and message from Mexico City.

The concert also featured numerous women of varied backgrounds discussing their reproductive health and abortion stories in an attempt to start a dialogue about the stigmatized topics.

Speakers included Lucy Flores, a member of the Nevada State Assembly, and representatives from many organizations, including Planned Parenthood and URGE.

They also shared hard-hitting facts about the hurdles women face to access their legal rights to an abortion during a mock game show inspired by "Family Feud."

Outside the venue, protesters were lined up in opposition to the event and abortion itself, with signs featuring “Jesus Saves and Forgives” and images of women who have died during abortion procedures. The protest was peaceful and the large security force dealt with no disputes.

"It was a great night, seeing everyone supporting the cause," said Emily Nobbe, a junior at CSU majoring in Film/Digital Media.

"As a student you need to be educated about reproductive health, have access and education about what you're doing, and have a safe place to do it in,” she concluded.



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