Answering the Call for Abortion Justice

The U.S. needs bold federal policy solutions to ensure that people can get abortion care and have the freedom to control their bodies, lives and futures.

Morgan Hopkins, president of All* Above All, at a rally outside the U.S. Supreme Court on April 14, 2023. (Olivier Douliery / AFP via Getty Images)

Years ago, I answered calls on the hotline for The Lilith Fund, an abortion fund in Texas. I spoke with people who were grappling with what seemed like insurmountable barriers to abortion care.

Whether it was racing against time to pull together funds to pay for care, figuring out how to cover travel costs, or dealing with the fact that their insurance did not cover their care, I remember those calls as if they were yesterday. As an uninsured college student working multiple jobs who could not afford my own reproductive healthcare, I could—and still can—relate to their struggles.

Last month marked the anniversary of the Supreme Court’s decision overturning Roe. We already see devastating consequences in its aftermath. Following decades of harmful restrictions, we are in an abortion care crisis like never before. We are seeing abortion bans across states, people suffering health consequences as providers are forced to refuse them healthcare, attacks on medication abortion, threats of criminalization, fewer ob-gyn residencies, and forced travel to other states. All of these barriers disproportionately impact those working to make ends meet, as well as young people, people of color and immigrants.

On the hotline, I listened to callers express their desire to control their bodies, lives and futures. That inspired me to answer a different call: the call for abortion justice.

We need a new vision for abortion care in this country—to expand our belief about what is possible. I have joined listening sessions with dozens of advocates and organizations across the country that inspired an action plan for abortion justice. This collaborative vision reimagines abortion care with compassion, instead of shame or judgment. It puts people’s and family’s health, safety and real life needs first by ensuring they can decide what is best for their circumstances.

This collaboration has informed the Abortion Justice Act, a visionary bill recently introduced by Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.). It would protect people’s right to make their own decisions about abortion, improve availability and affordability of abortion care, and prevent lawmakers from creating barriers to care.

Our fundamental rights are at stake. We are done compromising and settling for crumbs from lawmakers and the courts. Legal abortion is essential, but it is going to take much more to ensure that care is there for anyone who needs it. It is going to take bold federal policy solutions to ensure that people can get abortion care and have the freedom to control their bodies, lives and futures.

All of us, whether we are Black, white or Brown, want people to be healthy, live with dignity, and have a chance to thrive. When all of us can make our own decisions about pregnancy, including abortion care, we create more economic security and healthier communities.

I am honored to work alongside the tenacious women of color and young people in this fight for our futures. Through resilience and determination, we have seen progress over the past year.

Last month, Rhode Island became the 17th state to ensure Medicaid coverage of abortion care. Voters in Michigan, Vermont, California, Kansas, Kentucky and Montana made it clear last November that they support access to abortion and oppose interference from politicians. Cities like Atlanta, St. Louis, New York City and Los Angeles have dedicated local dollars to directly fund abortion care.

It’s going to take all of us, working together, to answer this call. 

Donate to or volunteer with your local abortion fund or independent clinic. Share your stories and talk to your family, friends and neighbors about your support for abortion access. Learn more to educate yourself and others about the realities of getting an abortion right now. Take action in your community and with your elected officials.

We can ensure that each of us can become parents if and when we are ready. Together, we can build a world with abortion justice.

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Morgan Hopkins is the president of All* Above All.