It's High Time We End Hyde If We Are Serious About Racial Justice [Op-Ed]
The Hyde Amendment blocks women from using federal funds such as Medicaid to end unwanted pregnancies. On this 43rd anniversary of a rule that places undue burden on women of color, we say enough is enough.
Jessica González-Rojas, Marcela Howell, Sung Yeon Choimorrow
Sep 30, 2019
Say her name: Rosie Jimenez. She was a 27-year-old Chicana, the daughter of migrant farm workers, living in McAllen, Texas, in 1977. She had a 5-year-old daughter she loved dearly. She was a student just six months shy of graduating and pursuing her dream of becoming a special education teacher. Yet, those dreams were never realized because Rosie died from an unsafe abortion she was forced to pursue because of the Hyde Amendment.
More than 40 years later, we still lack justice for Rosie’s untimely and unnecessary death. We must still contend with the stark injustice of the Hyde Amendment and similar restrictions, which deny coverage for safe abortion to people with Medicaid insurance, federal employees, military personnel, Native Americans, Alaskan Natives and federal prisoners. And political leaders still shy away from condemning the Hyde Amendment for what it is—a blatantly racist policy that essentially says women of color and women with low incomes are not worthy of making their own decisions over their bodies.