June 24, 2022
This morning, the Supreme Court handed down the official opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, making official what we expected following last month’s leaked draft. The Court has overruled Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey, ignoring and invalidating over 50 years of precedent. This ruling nullifies the Constitutional right for birthing people to choose whether or not to end a pregnancy and opens the door for states to severely restrict and even ban access to abortion.
This news is disheartening in a movement that holds bodily autonomy and empowered decision making at its core. We are all doing our best to honor our frustration, anger, and grief without losing the passion to continue fighting for liberation. As we sit with this challenge, we want to offer a brief meditation from Mariame Kaba on practicing hope as a discipline:
“It’s work to be hopeful … You have to actually put in energy, time, and you have to be clear-eyed, and you have to hold fast to having a vision. It’s a hard thing to maintain. But it matters to have it, to believe that it’s possible, to change the world.”
To be clear, this ruling does not make abortion illegal nationwide. Although many states can and will ban access in the wake of this opinion, options will still exist for people seeking to end a pregnancy, regardless of where they live. For example, those unable to access abortion care in their home state may be able to travel to a state where abortion is available in a clinical setting, and abortion funds can help cover the additional costs that entails. Additionally, self managed abortion with pills is becoming an increasingly accessible option, especially for those who would have to travel long distances or who face financial barriers to accessing in-person abortion care.
The options that remain available may be more expensive, time consuming, or legally fraught than they otherwise would have been prior to this ruling. However, our movements and communities are committed to collecting and redistributing resources to get people access to care, regardless of their income or circumstance. If you are able, support people seeking abortion care by donating to your local fund, or a fund in an area that will be immediately impacted by the Dobbs decision.
Although we were anticipating this outcome and are not surprised by the official opinion, we are still deeply disappointed. Moments like these force us to confront the reality of the political landscape we exist in – one that is often hostile to the project of Reproductive Justice and indifferent to the suffering of marginalized people. Engaging with this reality can be exhausting, but the practice of remaining hopeful and working towards positive change is an act of defiance and resilience. We invite you to join us in our Black Sanctuary spaces, FYRE camp, base member meetings, and other offerings as a way to build community, gain skills, and take care of each other as we all struggle to remain hopeful and continue fighting for our collective liberation.
SPARK Reproductive Justice NOW! Inc.
Information on the legal status of abortion by state: https://www.guttmacher.org/article/2022/06/13-states-have-abortion-trigger-bans-heres-what-happens-when-roe-overturned
Information on accessing self managed abortion with pills https://www.plancpills.org/
Abortion funding for folks in Georgia: https://arc-southeast.org/
Abortion funding nationally: https://abortionfunds.org/need-abortion/
Repro Legal Helpline https://www.reprolegalhelpline.org/