As the human rights crisis in the U.S. intensifies, every healthcare worker has a role in protecting people who need abortion care. We must empower ourselves, patients, and the public with accurate, actionable information to access the resources they need. Not acting in this crisis goes immediately against one of the first oaths we made joining the health professions: Do no harm.
The War on Women was in full force under the Trump administration. While the battle may look different today, we are staying vigilant in our goals to dismantle patriarchy at every turn. The fight is far from over. We are watching.
This week: the United States Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade; sexism and racism enter the Jan. 6 Attack hearings; FINA bans transgender women from participating in women’s swimming competitions; and more.
Today the U.S. approaches the end of a Supreme Court term unlike any other—leaving many to wonder about the Court’s commitment to equality, inclusion and nondiscrimination.
On July 6, Michele Goodwin will be joined by leading experts in constitutional law, criminal justice, women’s rights, administrative law, the Second Amendment, and free speech; together, they will give an overview of this term, what’s at stake, and what comes next.
On June 23, members of Congress introduced the Stop Anti-Abortion Disinformation (SAD) Act to crack down on false advertising related to abortion services by “crisis pregnancy centers” (CPCs). CPCs are anti-abortion organizations that masquerade as abortion clinics in order to interfere with access to reproductive healthcare by disseminating inaccurate, misleading and stigmatizing information about abortion and contraception. Despite appearances, most CPCs do not employ licensed medical personnel or provide referrals for birth control or abortion care.
In the House, the lead sponsors of the SAD Act are Reps. Carolyn B. Maloney (D-N.Y.) and Suzanne Bonamici (D-Ore.), In the Senate, the bill is led by Sens. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.). “No one should have to question that the person they are seeking medical advice from is actually a doctor or that information is accurate, objective and complete,” said Maloney.
When Justice Samuel Alito did the final proofreading of his majority opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, he must have felt a great sense of moral rectitude and satisfaction at the fulfillment of a half-century-long mission.
But he should also have been a bit nervous about the thinness of some of his assertions and the vulnerability of some of his legal analysis. That last reading might have gone something like this.
If we pay attention to those whose lives have already been destroyed by an inability to access abortion, we can see our collective future and the depths the challenges to come. Centering the voices of those who have struggled to get care—even as we recognize the implications of Dobbs on everyone—allows us to predict at least three immediate consequences of last week’s decision.
In overturning Roe v. Wade, the U.S. Supreme Court justices have signaled that this is not a legal fight anymore but a social war. They are now poised to go after birth control, gay rights, sodomy laws and who knows what else.
Republicans have already told us that if they take control of Congress in the fall—which, unless there is a broad public outcry, they certainly could—one of their first orders of business will be to pass a law making abortion illegal throughout the country. There will be no safe state for a woman.
The Biden–Harris administration alone cannot solve the abortion access crisis that will worsen now that Roe is officially overturned—but it is not without options to act. By exploring the five avenues discussed here, the administration can help mitigate the harm that is about to come.
In a cruel betrayal of the women of this country, and for the first time in the history of the Supreme Court and the United States, a fundamental constitutional right has been taken away. The opinion will have wide-ranging consequences not just for abortion access and women’s health—but for rights like access to contraception, infertility treatments and sexual privacy.
Shortly after the U.S. Supreme Court released its opinion overturning constitutional abortion rights in Roe v. Wade, U.S. President Joseph Biden delivered scathing remarks condemning the decision and announced actions he will take to ensure abortion healthcare access for all Americans. In its sweeping decision, the Supreme Court eliminated 50 years of Supreme Court precedents.
“It’s a sad day for the Court and for the country,” said Biden. “The health and life of women of this nation are now at risk.”