The Women’s Health Protection Act just failed to advance in the Senate. President & CEO of Physicians for Reproductive Health and ob/gyn in DC Dr. Jamila Perritt responds:
“Today’s vote on the Women’s Health Protection Act is not a surprise, but it is still deeply disappointing. What opponents of this critical bill deliberately fail to acknowledge or attempt to understand is that restrictions on abortion hurt the health of the communities and constituents they represent.
Abortion bans are a tool of reproductive oppression
“Abortion bans are a tool of reproductive oppression. As a physician I find it unconscionable that abortion is politicized as a divisive issue when, in fact, it is a deeply personal medical decision rooted in autonomy, dignity, self-determination, health, and well-being. Abortion is necessary health care for many; it is a part of the continuum of reproductive health care that all people need access to just like contraceptive care, birth care, and miscarriage care.
“We need our elected Members of Congress to do better. This is not a theoretical, future problem; we are in crisis right at this very moment. For more than eight months, Texas S.B. 8 has been in effect, with patients who are able to travel out of state creating ripple effects across the country as providers and direct support organizations struggle to meet this increased need. With the Supreme Court poised to overturn Roe v. Wade, this situation will worsen, putting the health of millions of people at risk, especially those who because of systemic inequities already face the most barriers to care – Black people, Indigenous people, communities of color, immigrants, young people, LGBTQ communities, and people living in geographically isolated area.
“Abortion is health care. This vote does not change that essential fact. And people who have abortions, people who provide abortions, people who need abortions – we will all continue to push for laws and policies to protect our health and our right to abortion care.”