Women of color aren’t surprised by the Roe v. wade

Since the ruling was released on Friday, leaders of black, Latino, Asian American and Native American groups have condemned the court’s decision. Their communities would be among the hardest hit by abortion restrictions, leaders say, due to a myriad of issues, including existing disparities in access to health care, financial hardship and a long history. of criminalization.

Their comments came as protests erupted across the country and several states prepared to quickly implement their abortion “trigger” laws, created to ban abortion if Roe v. Wade was falling.

The annulment of Roe v. Wade points to the economic hardship and maternal health crisis that black and brown women face, with many advocates saying forced pregnancies would only worsen their outcomes. For example, black women are three times more likely than white women to die from pregnancy-related complications. Abortion rights leaders also worry that poor black and Latino women don’t have the money to travel out of state to get abortions.

Poor women of all races are affected

The Guttmacher Institute, a research group supporting abortion rights, says poor or low-income women make up 75% of abortion patients.

CNN senior political analyst Nia-Malika Henderson said one of the main reasons women choose to have abortions is because they cannot financially support a child.

Since abortion rights are determined by each state, the question is whether state officials will expand the social safety net for women who are forced to carry their babies to term.

“They will have to receive all kinds of medical care. Will there be paid family leave at these jobs? We know this is going to fall disproportionately on poor women of all races; White, Black, Latino, Asian” , Henderson said. . “They can’t afford to go to another state where they can have an abortion.”

Isra Pananon Weeks, acting executive director and chief of staff of the National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum, said many Asian American and Pacific Islander women work in low-wage front-line service jobs without health insurance or paid sick leave.

Abortion care is “riddled with language barriers, cultural stigmas and low rates of insurance coverage among the most vulnerable members of our community” and traveling and getting an abortion was already “difficult, if not impossible”, a said Weeks.

“Gutting Roe is cutting access to abortion care and putting the well-being and financial stability of millions of AAPI women and families at risk,” Weeks said.

“We must fight back”

Black-led social justice groups said the gutting of Roe v. Wade is just the latest example of lawmakers disenfranchising.

The NAACP issued a statement with a leader saying the Supreme Court’s decision returns the country to a “dangerous era where fundamental constitutional rights exist only for a select few.”

Portia White, vice president of political and legislative affairs for the NAACP, likened the abortion decision to lawmakers suppressing black voting.

“They took away our right to vote, and now women have lost their right to their own bodies. What next?” said White. “We cannot let our future rest in the hands of those who are determined to crush every bit of it. We must fight back.”

White said the NAACP will mobilize voters for “the most critical midterm election America has ever seen” in November.

Leaders of the Movement for Black Lives said the Supreme Court ruling is “another affront to black lives in this country, with those in power continually proving they don’t care about the health and well-being of people.” to be black”.

“As a black liberation movement guided by black feminist values ​​and a commitment to abolition, we see Roe’s downfall for what it is: another opportunity for the state to criminalize, police and harm the most vulnerable among us,” the group said in a statement.

Reproductive rights advocates in the Latino community also rejected the decision.

UnidosUS President Janet Murguía said the Latin American community already knows what it feels like to have their rights taken away and their ordinary activities criminalized. Murguía said advocates fear banning abortion will make poor women and women of color more vulnerable to prosecution and punishment.

“As a civil rights organization, we believe we need to side with the protection of women’s rights, not a process that eviscerates them,” she said. “A majority of women — and a majority of Latinas — want the freedom to make their own decisions about their health and well-being, and believe those decisions should be a private matter between them and their healthcare provider.”

Why tribal lands are unlikely to become abortion sanctuaries

The Native American community will also suffer without access to abortion, advocates say.

Crystal Echo Hawk, founder and executive director of IllumiNative, said Native American women and girls will face an increase in violence because they may be forced to stay in a bad relationship with an abusive partner or trafficker if they are pregnant.

“Reproductive rights and systemic violence are intrinsically linked, and Black, Indigenous and women of color, transgender, non-binary and two-spirited people already face some of the highest rates of sexual violence and maternal deaths,” said said Echo Hawk. “Access to abortion and reproductive care is fundamental to safety and well-being. It is a matter of life and death for many Aboriginal communities.

James C. Tibbs