USA – “Scarcity mindset”: As reproductive rights are eroded, abortion funds are running out of money

Advocates fear a reduction in funds will force more women to give birth

JULY 5, 2024

In 2024, the National Abortion Federation and Planned Parenthood’s Justice Fund had the largest budget in its history. Still, on July 1, the organizations had to make the difficult decision to slash their budgets from giving 50 percent assistance to people to 30 percent with no exceptions. This comes at a time when many abortion clinics in the north are seeing a surge in patients as a repercussion of Florida’s six-week abortion ban, and as Iowa’s six-week ban is expected to take effect later this month.

“We had to make this shift in funding because the need has skyrocketed with so many additional bans and people being forced to travel further care,” Brittany Fonteno, president and CEO of the National Abortion Federation, told Salon in a phone call. Fonteno added they’ve been spending approximately $6 million per month on procedural funding and upwards of $200,000 per month on travel funding.


Louisiana’s move to criminalize abortion pills is cruel and medically senseless

Louisiana, with one of the US’s worst maternal mortality rates, wants to make abortion medication a ‘controlled substance’

Moira Donegan
Wed 29 May 2024

This week, Louisiana moved to expand the criminalization of abortion further than any state has since before Roe v Wade was decided. On Thursday, the state legislature passed a bill that would reclassify mifepristone and misoprostol – the two drugs used in a majority of American abortions – as dangerous controlled substances.

Under both state and federal classifications, the category of controlled substances includes those medications known to cause mind-altering effects and create the potential for addictions, such as sedatives and opioids; abortion medications carry none of this potential for physical dependence, habit-forming or abuse. The move from Louisiana lawmakers runs counter to both established medical opinion and federal law.


The Abortion Pill Underground

Since Roe was overturned, thousands of people in red states have found a way to get an abortion—often thanks to providers operating at the edge of the law.

May 7, 2024

When Kay found out she was pregnant at the end of last year, she knew three things clearly. “I was poor and I had an unwanted pregnancy and knew I couldn’t afford a standard abortion for hundreds of dollars,” she told me. A 29-year-old student already raising one child, Kay lives in Texas, where abortion is banned. The nearest clinic she could find was at least a 12-hour drive away. But Kay thought there might be another option. “I went to Google and started searching if it was possible somehow to receive abortion pills through the Internet.”

It was not only possible; it was much easier and more affordable than Kay had expected. She found online services that offered to ship the same medications that were available in clinics right to her doorstep in Texas for $150 or, if she couldn’t afford that, for free. It seemed so simple that Kay thought it might be a scam. “I was scared I would wait for the pills and they wouldn’t work when I got them,” she said.


USA – More “navigators” are helping women travel to have abortions

By Lillian Mongeau Hughes
January 30, 2024

Chloe Bell is a case manager at the National Abortion Federation. She spends her days helping people cover the cost of an abortion and, increasingly, the interstate travel many of them need to get the procedure.

"What price did they quote you?" Bell asked a woman from New Jersey who had called the organization's hotline seeking money to pay for an abortion. Her appointment was the next day.


Abortion funds run short of money as demand soars and donations fall

Olivia Goldhill
Jan. 23, 2024

The head of the Abortion Fund of Ohio had a sinking feeling as she looked at its end-of-year finances last month. The fund had paid out $1.5 million in 2023 to help close to 4,400 patients get abortions — up from 1,175 the year before — and the pace wasn’t sustainable. If the fund didn’t take a pause for a few weeks, she feared it would run out of money and have to close for good.

The nonprofit stopped taking calls on Dec. 19, and made the “very very difficult decision” to suspend operations until Feb. 1, said Taren Holliman, the organization’s program manager. It’s among a handful of abortion funds that have had to temporarily halt operations as demand outstripped donations. Both the Utah Abortion Fund and Indigenous Women Rising paused for a month last summer after exceeding their budgets, and many more are reevaluating their funding policies and tightening purses.


Ending Roe v. Wade May Have Had the Opposite Effect That Conservatives Had Hoped For

NOV 07, 2023

On Tuesday, Ohio voters passed a ballot measure enshrining the right to an abortion in the state constitution, joining several states where voters have responded to the end of Roe v. Wade by protecting reproductive rights via popular referendum. We recently learned, however, that even without these votes, reproductive rights might be safer than many expected following the end of Roe in 2022.

When the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the conventional wisdom was that there would be a steep drop in the number of abortions in the United States. As it turns out, though, conventional wisdom was wrong. To many observers’ surprise, two recent studies reveal that national abortion numbers have actually slightly increased since the Supreme Court ended Roe. Based on everything we know about abortion seekers and providers, however, that abortion numbers would go up in the face of Supreme Court retrenchment should have been exactly what was predicted.


USA _ A Weekend at Abortion Camp Offers a Glimpse Into the Future of Abortion Access

In the year after Dobbs, the movement has been operating in triage mode, and Abortion Camp was conceived as a conclave where activists could come together to have honest conversations about their work and what they needed from each other.

Oct 26, 2023

On the wall in the gym at Abortion Camp hung a massive, colorful map of the United States festooned with index cards. Each card had the name, age, pronouns, astrological sign, and affiliation of each of the 50-or-so people who had traveled from across the country, and a few from overseas, to attend the event. As a kickoff activity, the campers had broken into small groups to fill out the cards and then placed them on the map to show where they were from.

Abortion Camp was held in early September at a hotel in the Pacific Northwest. The campers ranged in age from 19 to one woman in her 80s, and spanned professions and geographies. They were doctors, midwives, abortion fund workers, community organizers, nonprofit leaders, poets, digital security specialists, lawyers, clinic escorts, doulas, and researchers. Some attendees had known each other for years, while others were meeting for the first time. What they all shared was a commitment to keeping abortion accessible in the wake of the Dobbs decision.


‘Feels horrible to say no’: abortion funds run out of money as US demand surges

A lifeline for many in states with abortion restrictions, abortion funds are being pushed to the brink due to rising costs and a drop in donations

Carter Sherman
Fri 22 Sep 2023

Laurie Bertram Roberts never expected Americans to keep forking over money to pay for other people’s abortions. But the abortion fund director didn’t think it would get this dire.

When the US supreme court overturned Roe v Wade last year, people donated tens of thousands of dollars to Roberts’ organization, the Mississippi Reproductive Freedom Fund, which is dedicated to helping people afford abortions and the many costs that come with it. But, in August, Mississippi Reproductive Freedom Fund had to stop funding abortions. It’s now closed until January 2024.


‘Rage giving’ prompted by the end of Roe has dropped off, abortion access groups say

The windfall of donations that abortion access groups received following the Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade one year ago hasn't lasted

By THALIA BEATY and GLENN GAMBOA, Associated Press
June 24, 2023

The “ rage giving ” did not last. Abortion access groups who received a windfall of donations following the Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade one year ago say those emergency grants have ended and individual and foundation giving has dropped off.

After the Dobbs decision, some major funders of abortion access also have ended or shifted funding from organizations working in states where abortion is now banned, said Naa Amissah-Hammond, senior director of grantmaking with Groundswell Fund, which funds grassroots groups organizing for reproductive justice.


Texas – These abortion funds and practical support groups are bridging the gap for patients

Without these organizations, low-income and marginalized communities would not be able to access the abortion care they need.

By Rebekah Sager
June 15, 2023

Even before the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade in June 2022, people sought out abortion funds and practical support groups as stopgap measures to receive abortion care. Today, these groups are essential, particularly for low-income and marginalized pregnant people, covering everything from travel expenses to child care and even the procedure itself.

The Brigid Alliance
Five years ago, the Brigid Alliance, a practical support organization that provides assistance to people who are forced to travel outside of their home states for abortion care, opened its doors when clinics in Texas began to close with the passage of S.B. 8.