Dorothy Roberts on reproductive justice: ‘Abortion isn’t the only focus’

The scholar discusses why the movement needs to bring reproductive justice out of the margins and into the center

Marian Jones
Sun 28 Aug 2022

For many women of color, the right to control one’s reproductive destiny has always been about much more than the right to abortion.

With the recent loss of the constitutional right to abortion in the US, some reproductive rights advocates are calling for a renewed focus on reproductive justice, a concept developed in the early 1990s by women of color. Reproductive justice stresses not just the right to abortion, but also economic, racial and environmental justice, along with other facets of social equality, as critical to true reproductive freedom.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/aug/28/reproductive-freedom-abortion-rights-dorothy-roberts-interview


States Where Abortion Is Illegal Also Have the Worst Support Systems for Mothers

The decision to overturn Roe v. Wade has made clear that women with the fewest reproductive rights also live in states that provide the least support for babies they’re now forced to birth.

By Lauren Camera
Aug. 8, 2022

When the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, eviscerating the 1973 landmark case that protected access to abortion for women in the U.S., Destiny Herndon-De La Rosa, a lifelong anti-abortion activist, left the convention center in downtown Atlanta where the National Right to Life was holding its annual conference, walked to her hotel room and cried.

“I joined the movement when I was 15 and I went to law school so I could do something like this,” she says. “Every part of my 15-year-old self would be so elated to see Roe overturned. But now I know more and I've seen more and I understand the reality of this. And I'm so scared for so many women.”

Continued: https://www.usnews.com/news/national-news/articles/2022-08-08/states-where-abortion-is-illegal-also-have-the-worst-support-systems-for-mothers


How Black Feminists Defined Abortion Rights

As liberation movements bloomed, they offered a vision of reproductive justice that was about equality, not just “choice.”

By Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor
February 22, 2022

It will probably be months before the Supreme Court decides, in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, whether to overturn Roe v. Wade. But, in this latest round of attacks on Roe, a novel line of argument has emerged: that forced pregnancy and parenthood no longer constitute a hardship for women. Lawyers representing Mississippi, the appellant in the lawsuit, describe a world that has fundamentally changed over the past fifty years, in which the burdens of parenting have been lifted and women have been empowered to have it all—to assume a career while still raising families. As for those women who would prefer not to parent, they now have the option to simply terminate their parental rights.

Continued: https://www.newyorker.com/news/essay/how-black-feminists-defined-abortion-rights


USA – As the Supreme Court Weighs the Future of Abortion, Women Are Already Suffering

Attacks on reproductive rights have metastasized well beyond abortion in recent years, endangering women’s health and lives.

By Michele Goodwin
Nov 12, 2021

In the nearly 50 years since the Supreme Court decided Roe v. Wade, there has perhaps never been a more consequential moment for abortion rights than the one we are in now. This fall, the nation’s highest court is hearing not one but three cases that could upend the fundamental promise at the heart of Roe: that pregnant women in the United States have a right to an abortion until a fetus becomes viable, which is around 24 weeks. On November 1, the court heard the first two of these cases, Whole Woman’s Health v. Jackson and United States v. Texas, which addressed Texas’s near-total abortion ban, the law known as SB 8. And on December 1, the court will hear arguments in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which takes on the 15-week abortion ban passed by Mississippi in 2018. In that case, the state has made a direct appeal to the Supreme Court to overrule Roe.

Continued: https://www.thenation.com/article/society/abortion-women-health/


The link between America’s rising maternal mortality rates and abortion

It's not a coincidence that maternal mortality rates began rising as abortion became harder to get

By AMANDA MARCOTTE
APRIL 19, 2021

Last week was Black Maternal Health Week, which reproductive justice activists started in 2018 to raise awareness of the grim fact that maternal mortality rates for Black women are up to three times higher than they are for white women. For the first time ever, the White House also joined in, with President Joe Biden issuing a proclamation noting that "America's maternal mortality rates are among the highest in the developed world" and calling on "all Americans to recognize the importance of addressing the crisis of Black maternal mortality and morbidity in this country."

The reasons for this crisis are multifaceted. As Vice President Kamala Harris explained in an interview with STAT, "systemic disparities and implicit bias" in health care are major contributors.

Continued: https://www.salon.com/2021/04/19/the-link-between-americas-rising-maternal-mortality-rates-and-abortion/


Abortion Bans Pose A Danger To All Mothers. For Black Women, They’re Especially Damaging

STEPHANIE LONG
OCTOBER 20, 2020

In 1973, Roe v. Wade made abortion legal across the U.S., but, as is the case with many other laws and landmark decisions, its application throughout the country was anything but simple — or equal. Decades after the Supreme Court’s ruling that a person's freedom to have an abortion without excessive government limitations is constitutionally protected, various restrictions continue to pose obstacles for people seeking abortions. And, with the appointment of several new conservative judges to the Supreme Court, as well as a rise in restrictive abortion legislation being passed at the state level, the road ahead isn’t looking much clearer.

In 2019 alone, 25 new abortion laws were passed — including bans on abortions after six weeks of pregnancy in Mississippi, Kentucky, and Georgia, and a full abortion ban in Alabama.

Continued:  https://www.refinery29.com/en-us/2020/10/10015405/abortion-ban-racism-black-women-effects