On the Issues
For Immediate Release
April 18, 2007
Contact: Destiny Lopez, 415-238-6921
U.S. Supreme Court Decision Jeopardizes Women's Health
Upholding of Federal Abortion Ban Criminalizes Safe, Early Abortions
Oakland, CA - ACCESS/Women's Health Rights Coalition denounced today's decision by the United States Supreme Court to uphold the federal abortion ban in the cases Gonzales v. Planned Parenthood and Gonzales v. Carhart.
"Today is a dark day for women's health and safety," said ACCESS Executive Director Destiny Lopez. "The Bush Supreme Court has disregarded its own established law that requires abortion restrictions to include protections for women's health. This ruling shows utter disregard for women's health and safety and has gutted the protections for women's health previously protected by Roe v Wade. It tells women that politicians, and not doctors, will make their health care decisions for them"
As Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said in her dissent, '...the Court deprives women of the right to make an autonomous choice, even at the expense of their safety.'
This dangerous law would ban abortions as early as 12 to 15 weeks in pregnancy and would outlaw abortions that doctors say are safe and among the best for women's health in the second trimester. The law fails to safeguard women because it does not contain an exception to protect their health. Major medical associations are opposed to this ban, including the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, which represents more than 90 percent of all ob-gyn specialists in the U.S.
"ACCESS works directly with women who are considering and seeking abortions. We provide them with emotional support, counseling if they need it, and also concrete help to make sure they can actually get an abortion if that's what they want," said Lopez. "This ban outlaws abortions that are safe and among the best for women's health in the second trimester. We will continue to ensure that our callers receive safe abortion care, and can make the medical decisions that are best for them, despite the Bush Court's disregard for their health and autonomy."
Since 1993, ACCESS has used a combination of direct services, community education and policy advocacy to make reproductive health and choice a reality for ALL women. We provide free and nonjudgmental information, referrals, advocacy, peer counseling, transportation, housing and financial assistance to almost 2,000 California women seeking all types of reproductive health care each year. We are also defenders of every woman's right to make the reproductive and sexual decisions that are right for her. No other organization in California provides the same range of support and advocacy for women who are seeking or considering abortion.