The day we feared has finally come – the Supreme Court of the United States has struck down Roe v. Wade. We are not shocked to learn of this ruling, but we are heartbroken by the fact that this will upend access to critical reproductive care for people throughout communities YWCA serves. The harm this decision will have, particularly to young women and people of color, is inexcusable.
The Court ruling significantly undermines the self-determination and bodily autonomy of those who experience unwanted pregnancies. Evidence shows that the negative ramifications of forced births are most significantly experienced by those who are low-income, especially Black and brown young women and girls.
YWCA Seattle | King | Snohomish stands ready to provide for those who need safety, economic assistance, and housing supports. We remain firm in our mission to advocate for policies that eliminate racism, empower women, and promote peace, justice, freedom, and dignity for all.
Each one of us faces our own unique circumstances and potential challenges. We must be able to make our own decisions based on our values, the advice of the medical professionals we trust, and what’s right for our family. We all deserve access to quality and affordable health care - including abortion care.
We commend the governors of Washington, Oregon, and California, who announced a Multi-State Commitment to Reproductive Freedom, promising to make the West Coast a safe haven for those seeking access to abortion care and contraceptives. This agreement will protect the rights of refugees who travel here to receive reproductive health care, prevent law enforcement or courts from punishing those who travel out of state for abortions, and refuse extradition requests from other states for any individuals who receive legal reproductive health care services on the West Coast. (See attached PDF for details.)
The right to access safe and legal reproductive health care, including abortion, is essential to the pursuit of gender and racial justice. Reproductive justice is a racial justice issue. Everyone should have the freedom to make personal decisions about their lives, families, and futures.
While we all continue to process this egregious decision, here’s how you can make your voice heard:
- Here’s a list of local protests from the Seattle Times. Get out and join other advocates to voice your support of reproductive rights. Let’s stand together and tell the Courts that #WeWontGoBack!
- Tell Your Member of Congress to pass the Women’s Health Protection Act: Today’s decision clearly signals why we must protect providers offering abortion services and ensure abortions remain safe and accessible no matter your zip code.
Access to abortion stands squarely at the intersection of gender equity, young women’s empowerment, and racial justice - impacting young people’s lives. Now is our time to act!
Annalee Schafranek is the Marketing & Editorial Director at YWCA. She contributes agency news, press releases, and media coverage to the website. Annalee’s educational and professional experience has always focused on the place where gender equity and media meet.
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