Now that Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito’s abortion decision draft has leaked, there’s little question: Whatever revisions there might be, it’s clear that the Supreme Court will overturn the legal right to an abortion in June. Roughly half the states will immediately outlaw most abortions, with more to follow in the coming months, while Republicans scheme to retake the federal government and ban abortion nationally. That latter threat is a while off — 2025 at the earliest! — so while we do everything possible to keep a wholesale rollback of democracy, we also need to do all we can to help people get abortions even after Roe is gone. In a lot of places, that’s going to mean helping them travel to states where it’s still available, as well as to pay for the procedure.
Some ugly realities, from New York magazine:
If Roe is overturned, the Guttmacher Institute predicts that abortion would be explicitly or effectively outlawed in at least 26 states. According to one estimate, 41 percent of women of childbearing age, mostly across the South and Midwest, would lose access to their nearest clinic, potentially increasing their average travel time by hundreds of miles. And Republicans have already been chipping away at access in these states for years, making abortion virtually inaccessible even if technically legal.
If you’re feeling terrified and want to take action, the best thing you can do is donate to an abortion fund: an on-the-ground organization that helps arrange and pay for abortion care for patients who need it. In states where access has been whittled away almost entirely, these funds also help pay for transportation and lodging for patients who have to travel hours, sometimes crossing state lines, just to access health care.
Nationally, there’s likely to be a lot of money going to Planned Parenthood and NARAL Pro Choice. They’re really worthy organizations that are fighting at the national level. They’ll also be getting lots of donations in the coming weeks, so we’re suggesting that if you’re only able to help out with a small donation, get your money to an abortion fund instead, to a local abortion nonprofit, or to the Women’s Reproductive Rights Assistance Project (WRRAP), which helps fund abortions directly for those who need help paying for an abortion. (If you can afford to help an abortion fund and one of the big national groups, great, do both!)
That New York article lists abortion funds in 31 states where abortion rights are under direct threat (the 26 states that will likely eliminate the right altogether, plus five more where abortion will remain legal, but lacks legal protections in state law). We won’t copy all of them because there’s the linky right there. They’re listed in approximate order of “how dire the situation in their respective states is, according to the Center for Reproductive Rights’ ‘What If Roe Fell?’ report, starting with the 13 states that have “trigger” laws that would automatically ban most abortions the minute the Supremes overturn Roe. Here’s their list of the abortion funds for those 13 states; you can click over to read the summary of the situations there, which can generally be explained as “dire”:
Mississippi: Mississippi Reproductive Freedom Fund, Access Reproductive Care-Southeast
Texas: Fund Texas Choice, West Fund, Texas Equal Access Fund, Stigma Relief Fund, Clinic Access Support Network, Lilith Fund, SYS (Support your Sistah), The Bridge Collective, Jane’s Due Process
West Virginia: Women’s Health Center of West Virginia’s Choice Fund, Holler Health Justice
Kentucky: Kentucky Health Justice Network, A Fund, Inc
Missouri: Missouri Abortion Fund
Arkansas: Arkansas Abortion Support Network
South Dakota: South Dakota Access for Every Woman
Louisiana: New Orleans Abortion Fund
North Dakota: North Dakota Women in Need Abortion Access Fund
Wisconsin: Women’s Medical Fund
Indiana: All-Options Hoosier Abortion Fund
Idaho: Northwest Abortion Access Fund
Utah: Utah Abortion Fund
In addition to the New York article, check the National Network of Abortion Funds for abortion funds near you.
If you’d like to make a single donation that will go to several organizations, you might consider a couple of ActBlue campaigns as well. This one supports a total of 29 abortion funds and pro-choice activist groups; you can choose to have your donation divided evenly among them, or specify which of the 29 groups you’d like your money to go to. And this campaign supports three groups in Arizona, which has a pre-Roe abortion ban that will go back into place when Roe is overturned.
On the political side, Kansas will be holding a referendum August 2, in conjunction with the state’s primary elections, on a constitutional amendment that would declare that nothing in the state’s constitution protects a right to abortion, or a requirement to fund any abortions. If passed, Kansas would join four other states that have passed such amendments to preclude state court challenges to abortion laws, and to prevent paying for abortions under Medicaid. To donate to the campaign opposing the amendment, here’s the ActBlue linky for Kansans for Constitutional Freedom. Defeating the amendment wouldn’t formally protect abortion rights like other states have, but it would at least keep the state constitutional status quo.
[New York / National Network of Abortion Funds / WRRAP / Photo: Hillel Steinberg, Creative Commons License 2.0]
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