Reproductive health, rights and justice advocates come together today in their communities and online to commemorate National Abortion Provider Appreciation Day: a day dedicated to highlighting the work of abortion providers as stigma persists and political and cultural attacks escalate.
This comes just days after independent abortion providers and their attorneys argued before the Supreme Court in June Medical Services v. Russo in a case that will have widespread implications for providers and abortion access in the United States.
“Despite alarming clinic closures, stigma, political attacks, and never-ending restrictions meant to obstruct access to care, abortion providers show up — fierce and fearless—each day for their patients. Today is all about celebrating the bold, compassionate care they provide,” said Nikki Madsen, executive director of Abortion Care Network. “Every person should be able to live a safe, healthy, and autonomous life and to thrive—abortion care providers help make that possible and are indispensable members of our communities.”
Abortion Provider Appreciation Day first began in 1996 to honor the life of Dr. David Gunn, an abortion provider who was killed by an anti-abortion extremist on March 10, 1993.
Since then, the day has grown to include acts of kindness and celebration of providers by local, state and national advocates in communities and online using the hashtag #CelebrateAbortionProviders.
This year, activities include local events, proclamations by city councils commemorating March 10 as National Abortion Provider Appreciation Day and a Tweetstorm online.
Independent abortion clinics provide the majority of abortion care in the United States.
But since 2012, 32 percent of all independent clinics have been forced to shut down because of abortion restrictions and anti-abortion extremism. And in some of the most hostile parts of the country, independent clinics are the only places people can get abortion care.